Stella Oduah sued for felony, others – FG

The Federal Government has slammed an eight-count charge against former Minister of Aviation, Stella Oduah at the Federal High Court in Abuja.

Listed as the sole defendant in the suit filed by the FG through the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the former lawmaker is being accused of falsely claiming to have lost her National Youth Service Corps certificate, among other alleged offences.

According to court documents, the charge was filed on June 26, 2023, at the Federal High Court, Abuja Judicial Division by Ochugwu Ogbeh Esq. and Ibrahim Mohammed Esq. of the Legal and Prosecution Department of the EFCC in Benin, Edo state.

One of the counts read, “That you Senator Stella Oduah and D.A.O Oshinowo (at large) sometime in the year, 2017, at Federal Capital Territory, Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, did conspire amongst yourselves to commit felony to wit: Make a document titled ‘Re: Request for National Youth Service Confirmation which you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 3(6) of the miscellaneous offences Act CAF M17 of the revised edition (Laws of the Federation of Nigeria) 2007 and Punishable under section 3 (1) (c) of the same Act.

“That you Senator Stella Oduah and D. A. O. Oshinowo (at large) sometime in the year 2017 at Federal Capital Territory, Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did fabricate an incorrect document with intent to cause injury to wit titled Re: Request for National Youth Service confirmation with intend that it may be acted upon as genuine, the representation you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 156 of the Penal Code Act and Punishable under section 158(1) of the same Act.

“That you, Senator Stella Oduah sometime in the year, 2011 at Federal Capital Territory, Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, did forward your credential to the Federal Government of Nigeria among which is an affidavit and extract from police crime diary, that you lost your National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Certificate, the representation you know to be false which led to your nomination as a Cabinet Minister and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 39 (2) (a) and punishable under Section 39(2)(b) of the same Act.

“That you Senator Stella Oduah sometime in the year 2018, at Federal Capital Territory, Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did retain the aggregate sum paid to you as salaries and allowances by the Federal Government of Nigeria as a Minister of Aviation and two-term Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria from the Taxpayers Money knowing that same represent proceeds of your unlawful activities to wit: obtaining by false pretense and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 17(a) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (Establishment) Act 2004 and Punishable under the same Section 17[b] of the same Act.

“That you Senator Stella Oduah sometime in the year, 2011- 2023 at Federal Capital Territory, Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, with intent to defraud did obtain the aggregate sum of salaries and allowances as Minister and Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, from Federal Government of Nigeria under the pretence of being qualified with your credentials, the pretence you knew or ought to know to be false and thereby committed offences contrary to Section 1(1)(a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offence Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act.”

In May 2022, the NYSC, in a letter, marked NYSC/DHQ/PPRU/783/Vol III, disclosed that Oduah did not complete the mandatory one-year NYSC programme in response to an inquiry made by a group known as the Concerned Anambra North PDP Stakeholders.

The agency said Oduah commenced her NYSC programme in 1982 but absconded and denied conspiring with the former aviation minister to hide the truth.