Supreme Court has ordered Ex-Federal Director of Pensions, John Yusuf to refund N22.9 billion to the federal government.
Wothappen reports that the Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered John Yakubu Yusuf, the former Federal Director of Pensions (FDP,) to refund the sum of N22.9 billion police pension fund to the Federal Government of Nigeria.
Mr Yusuf is being prosecuted alongside 5 others by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission over allegedly stealing N32.8 billion from the Police Pension Fund.
The apex court in its judgement today affirmed the decision of the Court of Appeal which sentenced Mr Yusuf to six years in prison.
- In 2016, Mr Yusuf was arraigned before the FCT High Court where he admitted the offence and subsequently entered into a plea bargain with the anti-graft agency.
- The trial judge, Justice Abubakar Talba of the FCT high court then sentenced Mr Yusuf to two years imprisonment with an option of a N750.000 fine upon entering the plea bargain.
- Not satisfied with the ruling of the FCT court, the EFCC approached the court of appeal in Abuja seeking to overturn the judgement of the lower court.
- In 2018, the appellate court quashed the plea bargain and sentenced Mr Yusuf to six years imprisonment ordering him to refund the sum of N22.9 billion naira to the federal government.
- Mr Yusuf who was also not satisfied with the decision of the appellate court, approached the Supreme Court, challenging the decision of the appellate court on the ground of gross miscarriage of justice.
- He prayed the court to set aside his conviction and the order to refund the said money.
What you should know
- Rather than overturn the decision of the appellate court, the supreme court affirmed the decision of the court of appeal.
- The apex court held that the victims of the convicted Director deserved restitution which can only be achieved through justice.
- Justice Abubakar said that the appeal of the former federal pension Director seeking to set aside the six years jail term against him was frivolous, vexatious and devoid of merit.
- The apex court also held that the 2016 judgment of the Federal Capital Territory High Court which sentenced Mr Yusuf to two years imprisonment with an option of N750, 000 was a slap on the wrist.
- The court adopted the judgment of the Court of Appeal which imposed a six years jail term on Mr Yusuf and also ordered him to make a refund of N22.9B to the federal government.
- “I have carefully perused the case of the appellant (Yusuf). I found it to be frivolous, vexatious and devoid of merit. I make an order dismissing the appeal and affirming the findings and conclusion of the lower Court” the supreme court held.