THE trial of Mr. Gabriel Suswam, a former governor of Benue State and his commissioner of Finance, Okolobia Okpanachi, continued yesterday, with a prosecution witness, Brijid Shiedie, managing director and chief executive officer, Benue Investment and Property Company Limited, telling Justice A. R. Mohammed of the Federal High Court in Abuja, how the sum of N1 billion was allegedly paid to an investment firm, after a meeting with Okpanachi.
At the resumed hearing on Monday, Shiedu, who was led in evidence by prosecuting counsel, Rotimi Jacobs, (SAN), further told the court that Elixir was invited by the state government to carry out a check of where the state’s shares were domiciled and consolidate them in one stockbroking firm.
She added that the state government consequently needed BIPCL, as the custodian of the shares, to sign, in order to achieve the mandate of consolidating the shares.
She also told the court that both Suswam and Okpanachi directed BIPCL to pay the proceeds of Benue State shares, into two accounts, provided by the ministry of Finance letterhead.
However, she said that no specific amount was indicated in the correspondence. It was communicated on the company’s letter head,’’ Shiedie explained.
The court had earlier admitted in evidence, the certified copy of Certificate of Incorporation of BIPCL from the Corporate Affairs Commission.