All is set for the arraignment of Government Ekpemupolo, otherwise known as Tompolo and Patrick Akpobolokemi, a former Director General of the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC),Thursday, January 13.
They are expected to be arraigned before a Federal High Court, Lagos, on a 40-count charge of alleged money laundering , conspiracy, stealing and diversion of funds, the EFCC said.
Four other persons, four companies are also to be arraigned alongside the duo.
They are Kime Engozu, Rex Elem, Gregory Mbonu and Captain Warredi Enisuoh.
The companies are Global West Vessel Specialist Limited, Odimiri Electricals Limited Boloboere Property and Estate Limited, Destre Consult Limited.
The suspects allegedly diverted N34 billion which accrued from the public private partnership agreement between NIMASA and Global West Vessel Specialist Limited for personal use.
The EFCC said it had secured an order of the Federal High Court to serve the summon and charge on Tompolo by substituted means as the former Niger Delta militant leader has continuously evaded service.
The order by Justice Ibrahim Buba allows the EFCC to serve the defendant through substituted means by affixing the summons and charge on a conspicuous part of his known address situated at No. 1 Chief Agbanu Street, DDPA Extension Warri, Delta State.
Several invitations extended to the former warlord to appear before EFCC were said to be ignored, stating the EFCC had also disobeyed Court orders and that he has already sued the agency for freezing his account without reason.
Meanwhile, the Federal High Court has threatened to order the arrest of repentant Niger-Delta warlord, High Chief, if he does not show up before the court on Thursday.
A court document dated January 12 warned the ex-militant commander to turn himself in or be compelled to do so.
The court document reads, “An order issuing a summons to compel the appearance of GOVERNMENT EKPEMUPOLO (A.K.A. TOMPOLO) before this honuorable court having being alleged to have committed the offences as contained in the body of the charge.
“An order of this honourable court granting leave to serve the summons and Charge NO: FHC/L/553C/2015 on the defendant.
“An order granting leave to the applicant to serve the summons and charge No: FHC/L/553C/2015 on GOVERNMENT EKPEMUPOLO (A.K.A. TOMPOLO) by substituted means to wit: By affixing same on the conspicuous part of his known address situated at No. 1 Chief Agbanu DDPA Extention Warri Delta State.
“And for such further order and other orders as the Honourable Court may deem fit to make in the circumstances. That the case is adjourned to 14/1/2016.”
This is as leaders and people of Okerenkoko, Gbaramatu Kingdom, in Warri South-West LGA of Delta State backed moves by the anti graft body to probe Tompolo over an alleged N13bn paid by the Federal Government for the acquisition of the Maritime University land in the community.
The ex-militant leader’s kinsmen, who spoke in Warri through Chief Michael Johnny, said now that Tompolo had admitted that the alleged N13bn was approved by the Federal Executive Council, FEC, Bureau of Public Procurement, BPP, Federal Ministry of Lands and Survey, Federal Ministry of Transport, NIMASA, the EFCC should ask Tompolo why Okerenkoko was paid only N360m for the land he got from them.
They said Tompolo was not above the law and he should tell Nigerians the whereabouts of the balance of over N12billion, urging the EFCC to invite Tompolo and also the immediate former ministers of the aforementioned ministries and agency to explain their respective roles in the transaction.