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Lagos Court Jails Omatseye, Former NIMASA DG, For Five Years

The Federal High Court Sitting in Lagos has sentenced the former Director General of the Nigerian Maritime and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Raymond Omatseye, to five years in prison.

Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia convicted and sentenced Mr Omatseye after finding him guilty on 24 out of 27 counts charge bordering on bid rigging and contract splitting

The EFCC had charged the former NIMASA DG  with N1.5 billion contract scam.

At the last adjourned date on March 14,counsels representing the prosecution and defence had both adopted their final written addresses in court.

Counsel to the accused, Mr Edoka Onyeke, in his address urged the court to discountenance the arguments of prosecution and dismiss the charge against his client.

He argued that the prosecution had not been able to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.

Onyeke said that out of the 27-count charge preferred against the accused, 25 dealt strictly with the issue of approval of contract above the threshold while the remaining two were on bid rigging.

He maintained that the prosecution did not prove that exhibit PD 16, which it relied on in dealing with the issue of threshold, got to NIMASA at the time the contracts were awarded while he urged the court to discharge his client.

In his argument, the prosecutor, Mr Godwin Obla, urged the court to hold that the case of the prosecution was “as clear as daylight, and had also been proven beyond reasonable doubt”.

He had submitted that the facts of the case spoke volumes, stating that the accused in exhibit PD 1 and 2 clearly articulated his threshold for goods as not exceeding 2.5 million Naira and for works as not exceeding five million Naira.

Obla said that count 25 of the charge, which dealt on threshold was straightforward while he added that sufficient evidence had been adduced to show that the accused awarded contracts above thresholds.

About Charles Igbinidu

Charles Igbinidu is a Public Relations practitioner in Lagos, Nigeria

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36 comments

  1. 5 years is too small.what of poor man that steals Goat? How many years ?

  2. TOO SMALL

  3. WHAT ABOUT THE MONEY THAT HE STOLE I HOPE THEY VE COLLECTED IT FROM HIM IF NT 5 YRS IN PRISON IS A WASTE OF TIME

  4. Why till now has d fed govt not review d cases of corruption, nd send a bill 2 a specific time frame likely 2 duspose cases off. 6 months is enough, lots of pending cases since 1999 till date. Quick dispensation of justice of corruption urgently needed. Dis particulat case is a welcome dev.

  5. Too small. What about PTF misappropriation fund, how many years that’ll be.

  6. I pray dis circulate 2 other corrupt public office holders 2 reduce d level of corruptn in d country. Wh@ about Saraki’s case?

  7. Dat is a wakeup call to other jordges. Common people can only be respect for 9ja lodges if we beginning to hear good news like dis. Pls EFCC help us to get COMD OLABDE JORDGES , applicants fee on sure- p, over #50.000 each on 100,000 applicants

  8. hmmmmm….only five years…for stealing billons of naira…

  9. Mean our jugdes are still corrupt, poor steal a toughlight jail for 8yrs, and rich still billions 5 yrs in jail,, nawaoo

  10. Better for him. Let him enjoy the loot in prison.

  11. It could hv bn witch huntin if this man is pdp,thank God na apc

  12. THAT 5 IS OK IS SMALL SMALL NIGERIA MUST B CHANGE VERY SOON NA HANGIN OR BOOLET

  13. Five years?if it where poor man nw he wll get life sentenc.smbdy gets 45yrs for stealn a politicians phone.God help de poor citizen of our great nation

  14. No jail sentence is small. what the five years jailed means that he is now ex convict carrier is finished by law even at his community position.

  15. 5yrs jail term for stealing Billions. This will not deter others from looting. In the United States, he will go for 25yrs such that the money he looted will never be useful to him. Now after 5yrs he will be out, then becomes Governor of Bayelsa state, and begins another looting all over.

  16. At last the man has been jailed. Kudos to president Jonathan who fired him in 2013 for corruption and that gave the EFCC the platform to press charges the same year. Many thanks to the judiciary. Anybody that dipped his or her hand in our collective resources should be made to face the law of the land as dictated by the law and not by any individaul. Invariably, let the rule of law take its full course. I rest my case.

  17. His illgotten wealth will be forfeited to govt. A convict can’t be employed in public service. He is finished politically.

  18. Justice cannot be sacrificed for speed. That is the time tested solid principle of law.

  19. 5Yrs in jail for stealing billions of Naira too bad for dis country, God wil not allow urs to get peace forever @#NigerianJudges.

  20. Even if Omatseye is to spend a day in jail, am very happy because he will learn a small learn. Shameless father!

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