A former governor of Plateau state, Jonah Jang, has denied ownership of the mansions the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) said it traced to him.
In a statement on Monday by Clinton Garuba, his media consultant, the former governor accused the commission of conducting a media trial to tarnish his name.
Concise News reports that the anti-graft agency had traced properties worth N500 million to the former governor. The commission said he purchased the properties from New Capital Properties Limited, a subsidiary of Northern Nigerian Development Company (NNDC), Kaduna.
But the former governor dismissed the EFCC claim, saying he would not honour an invitation sent to him by the commission over the matter.
Jang said his decision not to honour the invitation was based on the fact that the matter was already before the court.
His words: “The decision to turn down the invitation was an easy one because the Senator is under trial in Jos the Plateau State Capital having been charged to court by the same commission, and the matter is expected to commence definite hearing around the date of the invitation,” the statement read.
“To be sure, it is baffling how the EFCC expects the serving Senator to be in two places at the same time since he does not possess any psychic abilities.
“To be exact, the invitation is not unconnected with the story in the news alleging that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has traced a mansion worth N500million to Senator Jonah Jang. The property located at No. 8 and 9 Gobarau Road, Unguwan Rimi GRA, Kaduna State does not belong to Senator Jang, and this is not the first time the commission would investigate its ownership.
“The property formerly belonging to Northern Nigerian Development Company, Kaduna, was allocated to the Senator while he was the executive Governor of Plateau State but eventually lost interest and did not continue with the acquisition.
“EFCC has this information and it knows the actual owners of the said property. Unfortunately, but deliberately EFCC continues to harass the Senator in its usual media trials aimed at tarnishing his glowing name and reputation.
“To his numerous friends, supporters, and admirers of his transformational work in Plateau State, the Senator wishes to admonish them to be calm and steadfast no matter the odds, as the recent allegation is nothing new, but one of the endless attempts at dealing with him by the powers that be. The Senator is in high spirit, and fervently ready to face his accusers in court, and not in the pages of newspapers.”
The former governor is standing trial on a 12-count charge bothering on diversion of public funds.