A man, Muhammad Kulloma has been arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) before Justice Aisha Kumaliya of the Borno State High Court, Maiduguri for alleged fraud of N40.5 million.
Kulloma, who was arraigned on Friday, 6 August, 2021 was said to have committed an offence contrary to Section 1(1) (b) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act.
The defendant, who was charged alongside his firm, Mbuta Criterion Nigeria Limited, allegedly deceived his victim, Modu Tijjani, the Managing Director of Gumalti Nigeria Limited, and obtained N40.5 million in tranches of N27.5million and N13million through his personal and company’s accounts respectively, under the guise of financing a contract awarded to him by a Non-Governmental Organisation, Mercy Corps, for supply of locally made cooking stoves.
The one count charge reads: “That you Muhammad Abdullahi Kulloma being the Chief Executive Officer of Mbuta Criterion Nigeria Ltd and alter ego of Mbuta Criterion Ltd, a company registered in Nigeria, sometimes in 2020 at Maiduguri, Borno State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court with intent to defraud obtained the sum of N40,500,000.00 (Forty Million Five Hundred Thousand Naira) only from Modu Mustapha Tijjani, the Managing Director of Gumalti Nigeria Limited via your personal account No. 0236531326 and your corporate account No. 0458028956 with account name Mbuta Criterion Nigeria Limited both domiciled with GTB Plc under the false pretence that the said sum represent payment for the execution of a purported contract for the supply of locally fabricated cooking stoves made with clay knapsack sprayers awarded by a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) , Mercy Corps, which you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1(1) (b) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and Punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act.”
The defendant pleaded ‘not guilty’ when the charge was read to him.
Consequently, counsel for the prosecution, Mukhtar Ahmed prayed the court for a trial date to present his witnesses.
Justice Kumaliya adjourned the case until September 13, 2021 for commencement of trial and ordered that the defendant be remanded at the Maiduguri Medium Correctional Centre.