Court Sends Ex-NIHSA DG To Prison For Diverting N2.8m To Celebrate Sallah

Former NIHSA DG John Shamonda Jailed For Using State Fund To Celebrate Sallah
John Shamonda

The former Director-General of the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency, Mr John Ayoade Shamonda, has been arraigned before a Federal High Court in Abuja by the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission, ICPC.

Shamonda was arraigned on a 10 count charge bordering on knowingly making false statement and virement without approval. The former DG was also accused of buying two Toyota Prado jeeps and two Hiace buses totalling the sum of N49.15m from the N603m from the money he was given by the FG, for the rehabilitation and replacement of damaged hydrological equipment across the country following the devastating incident of flooding in 2012. He has now been jailed.

Justice Adeniyi Ademola in his judgement said:

“During the trial, the prosecution presented seven witnesses while 26 documents were admitted as exhibits. The court was also told that Shamonda, while being the DG of NIHSA, had written to the then Minister of Water Resources, Mrs Sarah Ochekpe, requesting N603m for the rehabilitation and replacement of damaged hydrological equipment across the country following the devastating incident of flooding in 2012.

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“Furthermore, the court was informed that the former DG in disbursing the money did not follow the ‘procurement plan’ for which the money was released. Instead, Shamonda approved that N2, 767, 500.00 be used for “Sallah welfare package” which was paid to all the members of staff of the agency. Also, he spent N25, 749, 390.60 on a national stakeholders’ workshop.

“In his judgment, Justice Ademola found the accused guilty and convicted him on counts five, seven, eight, nine and 10 to one year imprisonment or an option of fine of N50, 000 on each count which sentences are to run concurrently, while he was discharged and acquitted on counts one, two, three, four and six.”

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