Delta State: The 5 Biggest Scandals of 2017
From Okowa to Nwaoboshi, from swindled $10m to the forfeiture of Guinea House, the Scandals of 2017 were as shocking as they were disgraceful: allegation of fraud, sexual promiscuity and political shenanigans involving Deltans in power and in social life. Indeed Delta, the only State in Nigeria running on a “blank” budget, had its fair share of scandals of 2017. Read on to see the Delta State five (5) Biggest Scandals of 2017.
1. Mistress defrauds Okowa of $10m
The scandal broke in February 2017. Delta state Governor Ifeanyi Okowa had been swindled out of $10 million by an Ika-born Nollywood Actress, Georgina Onuoha. Gov Okowa, nicknamed “ego aria”, had diverted the sum of $10 million from the bailout funds and London-Paris loan refunds allocated to Delta State to his mistress’ US bank account only for her to refuse to remit the money into the slush accounts provided by the governor. Well, Gov. Okowa came out publicly to unconvincingly deny both the love affair and the laundered money. Hear him: “People who know me, know I have a pattern of life. My party the PDP has issued an official statement on the issue. I gave my life to Christ several years ago and I know who I am…If Jesus Christ could be accused, who am I?”
2. Apostle Suleman and Stephanie Otobo’s sex Tango
In March 2017, Warri-born Stephanie Otobo came forward with allegation that Apostle Johnson Suleman, the President and founder of Omega Fire Ministry Worldwide, had an illicit love affair with her and also promised to marry her. 23-year-old Otobo said she met Suleman in 2015 through a friend and got pregnant for him in 2016. The sex scandal got messier when the Canadan-based stripper released a copy of her Bank statement showing huge deposits including a humongous $200,000 by Apostle Suleman. The Auchi-born preacher denied the allegation and filed a one billion Naira lawsuit for defamation of character. The case with suit no: ID/ADR/374/2017 was filed at the Ikeja High Court in Lagos. Stephanie Otobo, in turn, filed a suit for $5 million against Apostle Johnson Suleman in a Canadian court. Both court cases are running simultaneously.
3. Delta State 2017 “Blank” Budget
Governor Okowa again came under fire on 4 October 2017 when the former National vice-chairman, south-south of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Dr Cairo Ojougboh alleged that the Delta State government was running a blank budget. In an open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari, Ojougboh claimed that “the Hon. Speaker of Delta State House of Assembly Rt. Hon. Sherrif Oborevwori signed only the last page of the budget and returned same to the Government; the Government then fills in the blank arbitrarily and apportions appropriation at will”. He then challenged the government or any of the state lawmakers to produce within 24 hours “a copy of the approved budget estimate signed by the Chairman Appropriation Committee, the Clerk and the Speaker.”
4. Nwaoboshi In Guinea House Scam
On 25 April 2017, a Federal High Court in Lagos ordered the temporary forfeiture of a 12-storey building the the senator Peter Nwaoboshi controversially purchased from Delta government. The Ibusa-born Senator, EFCC alleged, had used part of N1.5 billion fraudulently obtained from the Delta state’s treasury to purchase Guinea House, a Delta State Government owned property at 29 Marina Road, Apapa, Lagos. According to the commission, the Senator had no “visible legitimate business venture to generate the amount spent in the purchase of the said property.” The Guinea House is one of the shares of Delta State when Delta was carved out of then Bendel State. Nwaoboshi is still battling the case of Guinea House scam.
5. Igbuya’s Military Style Impeachment
On 11 May 2017, Delta State Speaker Rt. Hon Monday Igbuya was impeached in military fashion. The impeachment notice was signed by 22 out of 29 Lawmakers of the state house of Assembly. It is not about the impeachment per se, but the manner of its execution. Insider source told XCLUSIVE MAGAZINE that it was Governor Okowa that initiated the impeachment plan, and identified Hon. Osenabi as the perfect arrow head to execute it. Like every coup plot, the meeting was held in the wee hours of Thursday morning at the palatial home of chief whip Princess Pat Ajudua in Asaba, and as early as 4am the meeting had ended for the coup plotters to reconvene at the House of Assembly at 6am for the impeachment.
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