Sagem scandal sees five in court

4 Jun 2004

Nigerian prosecutors yesterday revived charges against two of the country’s former cabinet ministers and three others accused of receiving bribes totalling more than USD1 million from French vendor Sagem. Former labour minister Husseini Akwanga and former internal affairs minister Mahmud Shata were joined in the Abuja court by two other ex-officials and a former government secretary, where all five pleaded not guilty to 15 counts of conspiracy. The alleged bribes came from Sagem in return for a USD214 million contract in 2001. The defendants were freed on bond and the case adjourned until 20 July.