Abia didn’t have N7.65bn I could steal Orji Kalu tells Court
A former governor of Abia State, Orji Uzor Kalu, has denied the allegation by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission that he diverted a total of N7.65bn from the state coffers while in office.
The former governor said he could not have diverted the money because Abia State didn’t have such funds when he was in office.
Justice Mohammed Idris adjourned till Wednesday for the second defendant to enter his defense.
He spoke at the Federal High Court in Lagos where the EFCC is prosecuting him alongside his company, Slok Nigeria Limited, and Jones Udeogu, who was the
Director of Finance and Accounts at the Abia State Government House when Kalu was in office.
The EFCC had closed its case in the 12-year-old case and Kalu, on Tuesday, testified in his own defence.
He said, “Abia State doesn’t have such amount. Even the day I was leaving, we borrowed money to pay salaries.
“The monthly allocation of Abia State when I took over in June 1999 was N168m. It averaged between N168m and N172m monthly.
“In the year 2000, monthly allocation was between N170m and N189m. In 2001, it came to about N302m to about N380m. I can recollect in 2002 – it was almost
the same and in 2003 when the revenue allocation was changed – we were having about N400m.
“The highest money I got as governor came from 2004 when we had about N1bn and from that time up till May 2007 before I left, what we had was N1.6bn.”
The ex-governor said he was a successful and wealthy businessman before venturing into politics.