Two Ex-ministers are detained by the EFCC for suspected N3.6 billion loan fraud.

Charles Ugwu, a former minister of commerce and industry, was detained by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on charges of conspiratorial and N3.6 billion loan fraud.

The late President Umaru Yar’Adua nominated Ugwu as a minister.

Following a reorganization of the government that included 19 other ministers, he was fired.

The former minister was arrested on January 11, 2024, at No. 2, Musa Yar Adua Way, New Owerri, Imo State, together with Chief Geoffrey Ekenma, according to a statement released on Monday by the commission’s Head of Media and Publicity, Dele Oyewale.

The arrest of the two suspects was said to have followed “a petition to the commission from a new generation bank on the alleged fraud perpetrated through a company, Ebony Agro Industries Ltd., linked to the ex-minister.

The statement read, “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 his obligations to the bank, and all efforts to get him to repay the loan facility proved abortive. The suspects would be charged to court as soon as investigations are concluded.”

Ugwu was chosen as the Peoples Democratic Party’s chairman in Imo State in 2020. Other candidates from the Okigwe zone, to which the seat was allotted, stepped aside to make room for him, so he returned without opposition.

He was placed on suspension for alleged misbehavior three years after being elected as the party chairman.

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