N23bn Diezani Poll Cash: Umahi In Trouble: THE Governor of Ebonyi State, David Umahi, is in trouble with the Economic and FinancialCrimes Commission.The commission said last night it had discovered that Umahi collected the sum of N400 million allocated to the PDP in the stateto compromise last yearâ€™s Presidential poll but he diverted the cash to two of his companies and used it to build two hotels in Port Harcourt and Abakiiki.The commission has already arrested and questioned many suspects, including bank officials, who have made statements linking the governor and his companies.EFCC sources said, â€śThis case involving some chieftains of the PDP in Ebonyi State and some companies emanated from the alleged N23,2999,705,000, disbursed by the erstwhile Petroleum Resources Minister, MrsDiezani Alison Madueke during the 2015 Presidential election out of which N400million was traced to Ebonyi State.â€śIn the State, Kelechi Igwe (incumbent Deputy Governor ), Fidelis Nwanwko and Ambassador Frank N. Ogbuewu collected themoney to prosecute the 2015 general election.â€śThe duo of Fidelis Nwankwo and Ambassador Frank N. Ogbuewu were invited and they disclosed that they collected the N400million from Fidelity Bank and handed itover to Access Bank on the directive of the then Deputy Governor who is now the incumbent Governor, Engr. David Umahi. â€śThe Operations Manager of Access Bank Abakaliki was invited and he revealed that the money was paid into the accounts of Osborn La-Palm Royal Resort Ltd and Brass Engineering & Construction Nig. Ltd. domiciled in Abakaliki.â€śThe statement of the accounts of the companies that were analysed disclosed thatthe sum of three N300million was paid into the account of Osborn La-Palm Royal Resort Ltd and N100 million into the account of Brass Engineering & Construction Nig. Ltd and subsequently withdrawn by Chinyere Egwuche.â€śThe movement of the fund from one account to another and the subsequent cash withdrawal of N300million in tranches of N50million are clear features of money laundering.â€śThe above companies were discovered to have been incorporated by the incumbent Governor of Eonyi State in 1993 and 2011 respectively.â€śConsequently, letters of invitation were written to the Managing Directors of the companies where the money was paid but the letters were returned undelivered as the addressees refused to collect them.â€śThereafter, Austin Umahi, Maxwell Umahi, Chinyere Egwuche and Mabel Dikibo were arrested. Investigation revealed that ChinyereEgwuchu and Mabel Dikibo were the signatories to the account of the companies.â€śIt was also discovered that one of the suspects, Chinyere withdrew the N300millionpaid into the account of Osborn La-Palm which, according to her was used to further construction of Osborn La-Palm hotels in Abakaliki, Uburu and Port Harcourt, while the N100million paid into the account of Brass Engineering and Construction Nigeria Limited was transferred to a certain David Umahi Faith Foundation. They volunteered statement and were released on bail to reliable sureties.â€śIn furtherance of this investigation, the property belonging to the companies were identified and the Commissionâ€™s stickers â€śUnder Investigationâ€ť were placed on them. However, legal machineries are being set in motion to seal the companies in case the suspects refused to wholly refund the monies that were fraudulently collected by them.â€ťIn the meantime, the sum of N90million has been refunded. Investigation is still in progress,â€ť a top EFCC official confirmed.