The Centre for Anti-Corruption and Open Leadership (CACOL) has hailed the conviction of ex-Air Vice Marshal Tony Omenyi, who doubled as former Managing Director of the Aeronautical Engineering and Technical Services Ltd (AETS).
Debo Adeniran, CACOL’s Executive Chairman, in a statement signed by Adegboyega Otunuga, the group’s Coordinator, Media and Publications, noted that the AVM Omenyi had been standing trial alongside his company, Aeronautical Engineering and Technical Services Ltd, for allegedly receiving over N136 million kickback from Syrius Technologies and Sky Experts Ltd., engaged by the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) and had clear evidence tendered against him to that effect.
He recalled that a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, presided over by Justice Nnamdi Dimgba, ordered the forfeiture of N62 million to the Federal Government, being part of the N136 million recovered from the former Air Vice Marshall by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The judge also ordered a compulsory winding up of the said company which was listed as the second defendant in the suit, having been a vehicle of corruption.
He said: “All these were after a painstaking, diligent and commendable investigation, coupled with brilliant prosecution by the EFCC. Tony Omenyi is to also spend the next seven years behind bars for betraying the trust reposed in him by the Nigerian state, through the very system that trained and supported him till he attained the pinnacle of his professional calling.
“We at CACOL, therefore, congratulate the EFCC for its meticulous and diligent prosecution of this high-brow corruption issue. In the past, it used to be a catalog of losses of such cases. We are delighted that, nowadays, the EFCC and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), seem to have learned the rope by employing very competent lawyers and enforcing due diligence in the investigation and prosecutorial departments before arraigning suspects in courts.
“This is a very laudable and cheering development, considering the multiplier and damaging effects of every strand of corruption case(s) lost to those the country reposed so much trust in and the betrayal they used in repaying such trust.”
Adeniran maintained that the EFCC and other anti-corruption agencies deserve the commendation and appreciation of patriotic Nigerians for their resoluteness and doggedness in stamping out corruption from our land.
According to him, “If the previous governments in Nigeria had confronted the ghost of corruption with the same fervor, the entire nation would not have been in such a mess as we found and the kind of impunity and recklessness with which corruption became endemic would not have been the case.
“As much as we enjoin the Muhammadu Buhari’s government to extend this resolve to both the economic and other major spheres of Nigerians’ life, the government deserves our cooperation to make it succeed in its mission of bequeathing a more sanitized and corruption-free social environment to all.”