The President of Masters Energy Oil and Gas Limited, Mr. Uche Ogah was on Monday arrested by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission just as he stepped out of the courtroom where a forgery charge filed against him by the Police were withdrawn.
Ogah was arrested around the Lagos State Magistrates’ Court in Tinubu, Lagos Island.
Recall that Ogah was declared winner of the last governorship election in Abia State by Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court in Abuja on June 27. He was then arraigned on June 16 by the Police for alleged forgery.
The Police prosecutor, Henry Obiazi, told the presiding magistrate, Mrs. Kikelomo Ayeye, when the case was called upon that he had the instruction of the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, to withdraw the charges against Ogah, his company, Masters Energy Oil and Gas Limited and an ex-employee of United Bank for Africa, Deji Somoye.
“I am instructed by the IGP to withdraw this case, as the issue is pending with the SFU,” Obiazi said.
The charges were consequently struck out by the court. However, as soon as Ogah stepped out of the court room, he was arrested by the waiting EFCC operatives who drove him away in their van.
An EFCC source said the commission had received a petition against Ogah hence, his arrest. He said Ogah was being interrogated.
In the suit filed against them, Ogah and his co-defendants were accused of conspiring with some persons still at large to forge a Memorandum of Understanding between Masters Energy Oil and Gas Limited and Mut-Hass Petroleum Limited sometime in March 2011. Ogah and some other persons still at large were alleged to have forged the signature of one Mrs. Bridget Adeosun.
The charges read, “That you, Masters Energy Oil and Gas Limited, Uche Ogah, and others at large sometime in March 2011 at Ikeja, in the Lagos Magisterial District, did conspire among yourselves to wit: forgery.”
“That you, Masters Energy Oil and Gas Limited, Uche Ogah, and others at large, on the same date, time, place and in the aforementioned magisterial district, did forge the signature of one Mrs. Bridget Adeosun and a document known as MoU between Mut-Hass Petroleum Limited and Masters Energy Oil and Gas Limited, with an intent that it may be in any way used or acted upon as genuine.”
“That you, Deji Somoye, United Bank for Africa and others still at large, sometime in August 2011, at UBA regional office, Palmgrove, in the Lagos Magisterial District, did knowing that Masters Energy Oil and Gas Limited designed to commit an offence, failed to use all reasonable means to prevent the commission or the completion of the crime.”
But they pleaded not guilty; after which they were admitted to bail in the sum of N200,000 each, with one surety each in like sum.