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  • Former Minister of Aviation, Stella Oduah, faces 8-count charge including falsification of documents and conspiracy to commit felony.
  • Nigerian Government files charges against ex-minister Oduah, accuses her of falsely claiming loss of NYSC certificate.
  • Charges filed against Stella Oduah include document falsification, conspiracy, and retention of government funds.

The Federal Government has filed an 8-count charge against former Minister of Aviation, Stella Oduah, at a Federal High Court in Abuja, for falsification of documents, conspiracy to commit felony and other allegations.

Oduah, who was a former senator, was accused of falsely claiming to have lost her National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) certificate, among other charges.

According to available court documents, the charges against Oduah, who had also had corruption charges against her, was filed on June 26, 2023.

The Federal Government of Nigeria through the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on filed the charges against the former lawmaker who represented Anambra North Senatorial District in the National Assembly, between 2015 and 2023, for claiming to have completed the mandatory one-year programme, when she was alleged not to have done so.

The suit was filed by Ochugwu Ogbeh W.A. Esq. and Ibrahim Mohammed Esq. of the Legal and Prosecution Department of the EFCC in Benin City, the Edo State capital, with the Federal Government of Nigeria as the Complainant and Oduah as the only Defendant.

The charges against Oduah

One of the counts read, “That you SENATOR STELLA ODUAH AND D.A.O OSHINOWO (at large) sometime in the year, 2017, at Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. Within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, did conspires amongst yourselves to commit felony to wit: make a document titled ‘Re: Request for National Youth Service Confirmation Which you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 3(6) of the miscellaneous offences Act CAF M17 of the revised edition (Laws of the Federation of Nigeria) 2007 and Punishable under section 3 (1) (c) of the same Act.”

In another count, the Federal Government alleged “that you SENATOR STELLA ODUAH sometime in the year, 2011 at Federal Capital Territory, Abuja Within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, did forward your credential to Federal Government of Nigeria among which is an affidavit and Extract from police Crime Diary, that you lost your National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Certificate the representation you know to be false which led to your nomination as a cabinet Minister and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 39 (2) (a) and punishable under Section 39(2)(b) of the same Act.’’

Another count reads, “That you SENATOR STELLA ODUAH sometime in the year, 2011 at Federal Capital Territory, Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, did forward your credential to Federal Government of Nigeria among which is an affidavit and Extract from police Crime Diary, that you lost your National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Certificate the representation you know to be false which led to your nomination as a cabinet Minister and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 157 of the Penal Code Act and punishable under Section 158 (1) of the same Act.

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Count Four reads, “That you SENATOR STELLA ODUAH sometime in the year, 2011 at Federal Capital Territory, Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, did forward your credential to Federal Government of Nigeria among which is an affidavit and Extract from police Crime Diary, that you lost your National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Certificate the representation you know to be false which led to your nomination as a cabinet Minister and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 157 of the Penal Code Act and punishable under Section 158 (1) of the same Act.

Count Five reads, ‘’Oduah in 2014 forwarded her credential to the “Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in the year 2015 among which is an affidavit and police report that you lost your National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Certificate the representation you know to be false which led to your Election as a Senator Representing Anambra North Senatorial District and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 157 of the Penal Code Act and punishable under Section 158 (1) of the same Act”.

He was also accused of forwarding the credential to INEC in 2018 “among which is an affidavit and police report that you lost your National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Certificate the representation you know to be false which led to your RE Election as a Senator for the second term Representing Anambra North Senatorial District and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 157 of the Penal Code Act and punishable under Section 158 (1) of the same Act”.

Count Seven reads, “That you SENATOR STELLA ODUAH sometime in the year 2018 at Federal Capital territory, Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did retain the aggregate sum paid to you as salaries and allowances by Federal Government of Nigeria as a Minister of Aviation and two-term Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria from the Tax Payers Money knowing that same represent proceeds of your unlawful activities to wit: obtaining by false pretense and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 17(a) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (Establishment) Act 2004 and Punishable under the same Section 17[b] of the same Act.”

Count Eight reads, “That you SENATOR STELLA ODUAH sometime in the year. 2011- 2023 at Federal Capital territory, Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, with intent to defraud did obtain the aggregate sum of salaries and allowances as Minister and Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, from Federal Government of Nigeria under the pretence of being qualified with your credentials, the pretence you knew or ought to know to be false and thereby committed an offences contrary to Section 1(1)(a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offence Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act.

Related case

Recall that last year, a senatorial aspirant in Anambra, Mr John Emeka, sued Oduah at the Federal High Court in Abuja, seeking an order invalidating her nomination as a Senatorial Candidate for the Peoples Democratic Party in Anambra State.

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In the originating summons, Emeka prayed the court to declare that the information supplied by Oduah in her INEC Form CF001, with respect to her participation in the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) scheme, was false.

He alleged that the former minister lied under oath in both her expression of interest and nomination forms, including in the INEC Form CF001 which she submitted to the commission for the 2023 Anambra North Senatorial District seat.

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However, the court, in a judgement by Justice Inyang Ekwo on November 22, 2022, dismissed the suit for being status barred.

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