Niger: Babangida Aliyu paid ghost contractors N1.7bn, Witness tells court

Three contractors who allegedly received N1.7 billion for jobs during the administration of former Niger State governor, Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu, have disappeared.

A key witness, Muhammad Ndawuye, a former Auditor General of the state, told the Minna High Court on Wednesday.

He said the N1.7 billion was given to the Ministry of Environment, which claimed to have shared it among three contractors.

The witness said due to incomplete documentation of the contracts, his office had to send an official to the addresses of the contractors, which were not found.

Aliyu, Umar Nasko and Tanko Beji are on trial for an amended seven-count charge of money laundering and criminal breach of trust to the tune of about N2 billion before Justice Aliyu of the Niger State High Court.

The witness averred that the audit team that examined the state’s accounts observed that payment vouchers were not checked by the Internal Audit and that payments were made to contractors without budgetary provisions.

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