The former governor of Anambra State, Willie Maduabuchi Obiano, has moved into Courtroom 5 of the Federal High Court in Abuja for arraignment.

The former governor is under the investigation of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, over alleged N4bn fraud.

CANDIDREPORTERS.COM gathered that on Wednesday, Obiano, dressed in a navy blue suit with a black cap, was escorted into the courtroom by more than 10 operatives of the anti-graft agency.

He was driven into the court premises around 8am in an 18-seater Toyota Bus marked ABC 573 KQ and kept inside the vehicle for some minutes before being moved into the courtroom.

He was sandwiched in between four EFCC operatives who are preventing his followers and sympathizers from accessing him.

At the time of this report, the identity of lawyers likely to defend him could not be ascertained.

However, more than 50 lawyers are already inside the courtroom as at the time of filing this report.

Justice Inyang Edem Ekwo who is billed to take his plea in the criminal charges is being awaited but officials of the court are already on standby.

The development comes over a week after the EFCC Chairman, Ola Olukoyede vowed to review all abandoned high-profile cases, especially those involving former Governors and Ministers.

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An impeccable source revealed, “We found that Obiano moved N4,008,573,350 from security votes into different accounts. The money at various times was changed into dollars and returned to Obiano by cash.”

EFCC’s lead counsel, Slyvanus Tahir, SAN, will lead eight other lawyers in the trial of the former governor

Some of the charges against Obiano include, “That you, Chief Willie Maduabuchi Obiano, whilst being the executive governor of Anambra State of Nigeria between March 2014 – March 2022, sometime between 7th February, 2018 to 18th February, 2019 in Abuja, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, indirectly transferred through Mr Willie Nwokoye, your then principal private secretary, the sum of N156,800.00 only from the Anambra State Government Security Vote Account No: 5030050875 domiciled in Fidelity Bank Pic into the Fidelity Bank Ple Account No: 6060018819 belonging to C.I. Patty Ventures Nigeria Limited (an entity that had no business relationship with the Anambra State Government), which funds were dissipated for purposes unrelated / unconnected with the security affairs of Anambra State, which you reasonably ought to have known that such funds formed part of the proceeds of your unlawful act, to wit: (Stealing and Corruption) and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15 (2) (b) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended) in 2012 and punishable under Section 15 (3) of the same Act.

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“That you, Chief Willie Maduabuchi Obiano, whilst being the executive governor of Anambra State of Nigeria between March 2014 — March 2022, sometime between 9th August, 2017 to 4th March, 2020 in Abuja, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, indirectly transferred through Mr Willie Nwokoye, your then principal private secretary, the sum of N261,268,585.00 only from the Anambra State Government Security Vote Account No: 5030050875 domiciled in Fidelity Bank Plc into the Fidelity Bank Plc Account No: 5600062873 belonging to Easy Diamond Integrated Link (an entity that had no business relationship with the Anambra State Government), which funds were dissipated for purposes unrelated / unconnected with the security affairs of Anambra State, which you reasonably ought to have known that such funds formed part of the proceeds of your unlawful act, to wit: (Stealing and Corruption) and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15 (2) (b) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended) in 2012 and punishable under Section 15 (3) of the same Act.”

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