A federal high court sitting in Lagos has sentenced Orji Uzor Kalu, former governor of Abia State to 12 years in prison. The verdict was given Tuesday morning in Lagos. Presiding judge Mohammed Idris found him guilty of the 27 count charges of corruption of over N7 billion being funds of Abia State when he was governor.
The judge also ruled that Slok Nigeria Limited, under which he ran the defunct Slok Airline be wound up and the proceeds forfeited to the federal government. Kalu becomes the third former governor to be jailed for corruption under this dispensation.
Joshua Dariye, former governor of Plateau State and Jolly Nyame, former governor of Taraba State were sent to prison last year on corruption charges too. The two former governors will, however, spend 14 years each in jail.
Kalu who was at the court pleaded with officials not to put him in handcuffs,
as he would freely go with them.
The case of
Kalu, who is also the proprietor of The Sun and New Telegraph newspapers, had
been on long before the Muhammadu Buhari administration took power.
Though he was
elected for two terms as governor of Abia under the opposition Peoples
Democratic Party, PDP, Kalu who later joined the All Progressives Congress, APC,
was elected to the Senate to represent the Abia North senatorial district.