The man who claimed that he purchased President Muhammadu Buhari’s presidential application form and former governor of Bayelsa state, Mr Timipre Sylva, has received back 48 of his property which the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) seized during the administration of Goodluck Jonathan.
As a norms in Buhari’s government, it rewards his loyalists especially those that funded his presidential election campaign not minding their offences. According to EFCC charge papers, some of the properties are located in choice areas like Wuse II and Maitama in the Federal capital territory, Abuja.
The commission during the Goodluck Jonathan tenure had slammed 50 charges against the Bayelsa state former governor and arraigned him before three federal high courts in Abuja.
Sylva, who contested the 2015 governorship election in Bayelsa, had accused the anti-graft agency of witch-hunt and political persecution.
The case was subsequently struck out shortly after President Muhammadu Buhari won the Presidential election in 2015.
A Punch correspondent, who visited some of the houses, observed that the inscription ‘EFCC, Keep Off’, on the gates or fences of the property, had been wiped off the buildings while some had been rented out.
The correspondent, who posed as a prospective tenant, was informed that the rent for the property ranged between N2.5m and N6m per annum.
Sixteen units of service apartments at Plot 1181 Thaba Tseka Crescent, off IBB Way in the Wuse II area of the federal capital territory (FCT), cost N6m per annum including a N1.5m service charge.
The building provides seven hours of power supply from a generator. One wing had been painted while the other was under reconstruction.
“When the EFCC sealed off this property, it was rotting away. However, it was re-opened a few months ago so we started to refurbish the property. We have repainted the property and we have started renting the apartments out,” a guard at the property was quoted to have said.
At a block of flats, which comprises nine units (six one-bedroom and three two-bedroom flats) located at 8, Sefadu Street, Wuse, Zone 2, PUNCH was told that the rent ranged from N1.5m to N3m.
“Immediately the EFCC inscriptions were erased, all the flats were taken. There is no vacant apartment now,” the security guard said.
At one of his properties located at 8 Mistrata Street, Wuse II, Abuja, it was observed that the property was a hotel, which charged between N25,000 and N45,000 per room.