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ICPC arraign court official over corrupt practices

The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has arraigned one Nkem Apollonia Mba, deputy chief registrar of the federal high court in Port Harcourt, Rivers state.

In a statement  on Monday, Azuka Ogugua, ICPC spokesperson, said the accused was arraigned on July 19, over her “involvement in fraudulent activities”.

“Mrs Mba was docked on a three-count charge before Justice Leteem Nyordee, of the Federal High Court 12, Port Harcourt, for offences bordering on abuse of office and corrupt demand of gratification by a public officer,” the statement reads.

“One of the counts revealed that the Deputy Chief Registrar received a kickback of N500,000 through her bank account from the purchase of Automotive Gas Oil popularly known as diesel and other products. She however argued that the money was her two percent entitlement according to Order 16 of the Admiralty Jurisdiction (Procedure Rule) 2011.

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The court heard that her offence contravened Section 10 and 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000, and is punishable under relevant sections of the same Act.

“The accused pleaded “Not Guilty” when the charge was read to her. Consequently, her counsel, S. Somiari applied for bail praying the court to grant her bail on liberal terms.”

The anti-graft agency said the bail application was not opposed by Agada Akogwu, the prosecuting counsel.

ICPC said Mba was admitted to bail in the sum of N500,000 with a surety who must have landed property in Port Harcourt.

The ICPC spokesperson added that the accused was required to deposit her international passport with the court registrar.

The case was adjourned to July 26 for the continuation of the trial.

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