Operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Uyo Zonal Office have arrested the Director and Project Manager of Akwa Ibom State Agency for Centre of AIDS, Dr Nkereuwem Etok Akpan for allegedly embezzling N30 Million meant for outreach, sensitization, HIV testing/counselling and purchase of screening and confirmatory test tiebreaker.
The suspect was arrested on Thursday following intelligence gathering on how he allegedly misappropriated the said funds which were paid to the Agency in November 2018 by the office of the Secretary to the State Government, (SSG) Akwa Ibom State.
According to a statement by the anti-graft agency, investigation into the matter revealed that within the same month the money was released to the Agency, Akpan single-handedly instructed that the sum of N24,600,000 be moved into the First City Monument Bank (FCMB) account of a company called Effective Medical Lab belonging to his accomplice (Peter Uduak).
Uduak, in his statement, admitted that he received the said money on the instruction of the suspect, Nkereuwem Etuk Akpan and also withdrew same and handed over to the suspect in cash.
He further stated that he got N100, 000 (One hundred thousand naira) only from the entire transaction.
“It was also discovered that immediately the money hit Uduak’s account, he withdrew the money between November 26 and November 28, 2018, and handed it over to Akpan in cash, who in turn deposited N22million into his private account (Life Link Specialist Laboratory) domiciled in Access bank.
“Further investigation showed that less than N6million was used by the suspect, for the purposes for which the N30million was released.
“During interrogation, the suspect confessed that the essence of instructing the N24,600, 000 to be paid into his friend’s company account and later to his company’s account, was to conceal the source of the money, having originated from the SSG.
“The suspect also confessed to using N7,120,000 (Seven Million, One Hundred And Twenty Thousand Naira) to purchase Christmas rice for people who helped in contacting the authority for the release of the said money,” EFCC said.
Akpan has made a useful confessional statement, according to the EFCC and will be charged to court as soon as investigations are concluded