Former Minister of Commerce and Industry, Charles Chukwuemeka Ugwuh, and Chief Geoffrey Ekenma have been apprehended by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for alleged conspiracy and fraud amounting to N3.6 billion.

The Minister and Ekenma were taken into custody by EFCC operatives from the Lagos Zonal Command on January 11, 2024, at No.2, Musa Yar Adua way, New Owerri, Imo State.

The arrests of Charles Ugwuh and Ekenma were prompted by a petition to the EFCC from a new generation bank concerning the alleged fraud conducted through a company, Ebony Agro Industries Ltd., associated with the ex-Minister, as stated by Dele Oyewale, the spokesperson for the anti-graft agency in a statement on Monday.

“Investigations revealed that Ugwuh and Ekenma, Managing Director, Ebony Agro Industries Ltd., allegedly obtained a loan facility from the bank for the purchase and production of polished rice.

“However, the suspect, according to the petitioner, failed to meet up his obligations to the bank and all efforts to get him to repay the loan facility proved abortive,” he said.

EFCC said the suspects would be charged to court as soon as investigations are concluded.

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