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General News of Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Source: cameroon-tribune.cm

Nguini Effa’s fate slated for September 9

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The last but one session of the trial took place at the Special Criminal Court on August 26, in Yaounde.

Slowly but steadily, the case pitting the State of Cameroon and the Cameroon Petroleum Depot Company (SCDP) against Jean Baptiste Nguini Effa, Jean Onana Adzi and Jean Atangana will soon come to an end.

The former General Manager of SCDP, Jean Baptiste Nguini Effa and his co-accused, Jean Onana Adzi and Jean Atangana, are charged with embezzling FCFA 70,327,152 belonging to SCDP from 2006 to 2008.

The session before a panel of judges led by Mrs Justice Eloundou Virginie focused on the presentation of submissions by the prosecution and by the defence bench.

In his presentation, Advocate General, Jean Claude Taghim said Jean Baptiste Nguini Effa is accused of having signed three cheques worth over FCFA 70 million as payment for the services rendered to SCDP by the company, Ikram Logistics, which is a partner of SCDP in the domain of logistics.

The problem began when Ikram Logistics realised that SCDP had not paid any money for the petrol wagons rented to SCDP. A complaint against the unknown was submitted in 2011. The case was then sent to the Special Criminal Court on December 27, 2013.

Civil Claimant, Barrister Alain Nguini said the cheques which were signed by SCDP were fraudulently addressed to other companies instead of Ikram Logistics.

For the hiring of wagons to SCDP, the cheques belonging to Ikram Logistics were paid to Cot and Math-Co companies through accounts lodged in different banks across the country.

The prosecution bench said one of the cheques worth FCFA 30 million which was initially addressed to Ikram Logistics was paid to Math-Co.

According to the prosecution, the cheque was later reimbursed to the public treasury by Jean Atangana, the then General Manager of Math-Co. The Ministry of Justice then gave an order for the suit against Jean Atangana to be dropped.

Defense Lawyer, Barrister Abah Fouda argued that SCDP is an anonymous company and according to OHADA law, the crime is not embezzlement but an abuse of social property. Hence, he held, the court should declare itself incompetent.

Also, out of the FCFA 70 million, FCFA 30 million has been paid making the court incompetent to handle the case. Jean Baptiste Nguini Effa said the payments were made in collaboration with Souleymanou Maïgari, Director General of Ikram Logistics.

Jean Onana Adzi said he refused all the accusations against him as he has never carried out any fraudulent practices. Both Nguini Effa and Onana Adzi said they were innocent. The presiding judge adjourned the case to September 9, 2014 for judgment and ruling on the competence of the court.

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