The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arrested Charles Ugwu, a former Minister of Commerce and Industry, on charges of conspiracy and loan fraud amounting to N3.6 billion.

The former minister was appointed minister by late President Umaru Yar’Adua and was sacked after a cabinet reshuffle that affected 19 other ministers.

This was contained in a statement from the Head of Media and Publicity of the commission, Dele Oyewale in Abuja on Monday.

Ugwu along with Chief Geoffrey Ekenma, was arrested on January 11, 2024, at No.2, Musa Yar Adua Way, New Owerri, Imo State.

The arrest of the two suspects was said to have followed “a petition to the commission from a new generation bank on the alleged fraud perpetrated through a company, Ebony Agro Industries Ltd., linked to the ex-minister.

The statement read, “Investigations revealed that Ugwuh and Ekenma, Managing Director, Ebony Agro Industries Ltd., allegedly obtained a loan facility from the bank for the purchase and production of polished rice.

“However, the suspect, according to the petitioner, failed to meet his obligations to the bank, and all efforts to get him to repay the loan facility proved abortive. The suspects would be charged to court as soon as investigations are concluded.”

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