Dokpesi’s Company Paid N6m for Hosting of Ex-counsellors in Abuja – Witness

A prosecuting witness, Johnson Egohwemu, in the ongoing trial of media mogul and former Chairman of Daar Communications PLC, High Chief Raymond Dokpesi, told the court on Wednesday how Dokpesi allegedly lodged some ex-counsellors from across Nigeria in an Abuja hotel with the sum of N6m in the build up to the 2015 elections.
The witness said the bill was paid for with a First Bank cheque
Egohwemu, an accountant with Top Rank Hotel was led in evidence by prosecuting counsel, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN).
The witness told the court that there was a booking for accommodation from Pomatea Standard Investment, a company linked to Dokpesi, for ex-counsellors Forum on February 25, 2015, with First Bank cheque of N6m and issued by Daar Investment Holdings.
He also said that an excess payment of N2.5m was refunded in cash to the company through one madam Mute Olori, after about N3.4m was spent which according to Egohwemu, was a proper thing to do.
In a cross examination by counsel to defendant, Kanu Agabi (SAN), the witness stated that Daar Communication Plc has no criminal records and that he provided accommodation because it is a reputable organisation, adding that the transaction has never been a source of embarrassment to the hotel.
Reacting to a question, the witness also said he didn’t know the reason why the ex-counsellors met; neither did he know the source of the money in question, whether or not it was a part of the alleged diverted money.
On further cross examination, Egohwemu said that the accused person was docked for diverting money meant for arms for political purposes, an information he gathered from the media.
When also asked if the witness was aware that the Goodluck Jonathan’s administration was tagged corrupt and clueless, the witness answered in the negative.
Agabi however frowned at the responses, stressing that the witness does not even know the charge preferred against the defendant.
Agabi further stated that Dear Communications was contracted to launder the image of Jonathan’s administration which was ‘inept, corrupt, and clueless at a time when some girls were kidnapped in Chibok, rise of violence in the North East, and militancy in the South South.
“The government had a bad reputation and employed the media organisation to amend and improve its image” Agabi added.
Justice John Tsoho adjourned to May 25, 2017 for continuation of trial

Author: News Editor

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