An investment company, PJO Ventures Ltd has explained that it paid insurance claims of 179 dead beneficiaries of the defunct Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) before the intervention of the EFCC.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had in a nine-count charge alleged that PJO and Cecilia Osipitan, who is a director in the firm, took possession of the sum of N6.5bn for the payment of outstanding insurance premiums and claims of deceased and incapacitated staff of PHCN, which they “reasonably ought to have known formed part of the proceeds of an unlawful act.”
But in an affidavit deposed to before the Federal High Court in Abuja by one Afolabi Adetola, a staff, the company said it also verified the next of kins of 283 other beneficiaries of the PHCN out of the 544 affected employees contained in the contract it got from Bestworth Insurance Brokers Nigeria between December 2014 and 2016.
Meanwhile, Justice Inyang Ekwo has granted bail to Osipitan in the sum of N200m with one surety in like sum.
The court held that the surety must be a responsible citizen who must own a landed property which value must not be below the bail sum.
It ordered that the title deed of the property must be deposited and also verified by the Deputy Registrar of the court.
The case has been adjourned to May 24 for hearing.