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N19bn Paris Club scam: EFCC report indicts Saraki, aides, ex-bank MD

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has submitted a report to President Muhammadu Buhari linking Senate President, Bukola Saraki, and some of his aides to the diversion of about N19bn from the N522bn Paris Club refund.

 

The report also fingered Mr. Robert Mbonu of Melrose General Services Limited.

 

Mbonu is a former Managing Director of Societe Generale Bank of Nigeria, the commercial bank owned by the Saraki family which was later liquidated.

 

The Federal Government had, in December 2016, approved the sum of N522.74bn to be paid to the 36 states of the federation as part of the reimbursement of the over-deduction on the Paris Club loan from 1995 to 2002.

 

The EFCC had sometimes in January discovered that the loan refunds were illegally routed through the account of the Nigeria Governors Forum by the Central Bank of Nigeria.

 

Upon receiving the funds, the NGF, in an alleged connivance with Saraki, began remitting huge sums to private consultants who then laundered about N19bn.

 

According to the report, apart from the NGF, others under investigation include the Relationship Manager to the Senate President in Access Bank, Kathleen Erhimu.

 

Some others under probe and identified as Saraki’s aides include Obiora Amobi, Gbenga Makanjuola, Kolawole Shittu and Oladapo Idowu.

 

The report alleges that sometimes in December, Saraki introduced the ex-bank MD, Mbonu, to Erhimu.

 

Others at the meeting were Saraki’s aforementioned aides.

 

It added that sequel to the meeting, the sum of N3.5bn was lodged into Melrose General Services Company account number 0005892453, domiciled in Access Bank from the Nigeria Governors Forum on December 14.

 

The report stated that two of Saraki’s aides, Obiora Amobi and Gbenga Makanjuola, were introduced to Access Bank as representatives of Melrose General Services Limited by Mbonu to enable them to make cash withdrawals from the account.

 

It added that Amobi and Makanjuola made cash withdrawals in various tranches of N5m and N10m.

 

The report reads in part, “Based on the foregoing findings, it is clear that Robert Mbonu, the Managing Director of Melrose General Services Company and his company were used to help divert proceeds of unlawful activities under the guise of payment for contractual obligations with the Nigeria Governors Forum.

 

“Suffice to apprise that all payments received by Melrose General Services Company from the NGF have hitherto been diverted directly via cash withdrawals and indirectly through transfers by Gbenga Peter Makanjuola, Kolawole Shittu and Oladapo Joseph Idowu, who are principal aides to the Senate President.

 

“Furthermore, other payments from Melrose General Services Company have also been linked to companies that Dr. Bukola Saraki has interest in and carries out transactions with.

 

“This includes the sum of $183,000, which was transferred to Bhaska Devji Jewellers, Dubai, a company Dr. Bukola Saraki had repeatedly made payments to.

 

“Also, the sum of N200m was transferred to Wasp Networks Limited that subsequently transferred the sum of N170m to Xtract Energy Services Limited, a company that routinely made deposits into Dr. Saraki’s Access Bank US Dollar Domiciliary account.”

 

The report concludes that a prima facie case of conspiracy to retain the proceeds of unlawful activities  and money laundering, contrary to sections 15(3) and 18(9) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2004, could be established against the aforementioned suspects.

 

“Additionally, investigation into their personal accounts is ongoing,” it adds.

 

When contacted, the Special Adviser to the Senate President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Yusuph Olaniyonu, who spoke on behalf of Saraki, said he would not react except he sighted the report.

 

“Send the report to me and I will be able to read it and contact the necessary people. If I don’t see the report, I cannot react to it in abstract. Send me the report if you want our reaction,” he said.

 

The spokesman for the EFCC, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren, confirmed that investigations were ongoing into the Paris Club scam.

 

He, however, said he did not know the specifics of the investigations.

 

“I can only confirm that there are investigations but I don’t have details,” Uwujaren said.

 

Source: The Punch

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Kano Ward Executive Council Suspends APC Chairman Abdullahi Ganduje Over Corruption Allegations..

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Says He Must Clear His Name Of Corruption Allegations

Abdullahi Ganduje, the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), has been suspended by members of his ward, the Ganduje Ward in the Dawakin Tofa Local Government Area of Kano State.

The Executive Council of Ganduje Ward led by Haruna Gwanjo made this known during a press briefing in Kano on Monday.

Gwanjo said that the former governor has to clear his name of corruption allegations regarding his long-standing dollar case.

The Kano High Court would arraign Ganduje on Wednesday, April 17, 2024 on charges bordering on allegations of bribery, diversion, and misappropriation of funds, including the purported acceptance of $413,000 and N1.38bn in bribes.

The Kano State Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, Haruna Dederi, had said Ganduje would be arraigned alongside his wife and six others.

The Kano State Government led by Governor Abba Yusuf, which initiated the criminal suit against the eight respondents, had declared its readiness to present 15 witnesses to testify before Justice Usman Na’aba of State High Court.

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WHY IS ODUNMBAKU BABA ETO’S NAME ON EVERY LIP? 

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By Sesan Lamuye – A Political Analyst

 

Cardinal James Omolaja Odunmbaku, the Celestial Church of Christ (CCC) cleric and political engineer, is one of a kind who stands in a unique class of his own.

 

His types don’t happen too commonly. Infact, in our clime, he is a rarity, to have one person clothed in celestial and terrestial robes so fittingly.

Only few of his peers can honestly say they don’t envy his sartorial elegance whenever he appears in his ecumenical garments. And when he sheds that, to adorn the political regalia, he’s also a people’s delight.

 

Few of his type readily come to mind anywhere – in Africa or in any continent. I think of Bishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa and, elegantly speaking, Archbishop Makarios of Cyprus who ruled from both the pulpit and the polity in his life time.

 

Odunmbaku, better known as “Baba Eto”, is a mortal, but given the extraordinary gift of the garb and demonstrable style that is uniquely his own, he’s fast assuming the status of an indispensable human specie.

 

His type acquire larger than life status that is bound to attract positivity and negativity.

Those who are enamoured of him present to the world a cult-like image of him. To them, he can do no wrong. One such person, before the satanic instinct in man, reared its ugly head in him, was so fanatical of the man, Eto, he registered some of his personal vehicles “Aremo”, for which he used to tell those who cared to know, that he was “heir-apparent” to Eto. Today, that person is singing new tunes, as if his new listeners cannot decipher sychophancy and crass opportunism in his new drumbeats.

 

Another was said to have appeared at a political interview panel where, when asked what credentials she had to seek a position, she matter-of-factly told the panelists “Eto”. And when repeatedly asked what qualifications did she have to think she was fit for the job, she retorted: ” Eto ! Eto !! Eto !!!

That secured the job for her !

 

Such a person is bound to attract envy, jealousy and disdain, dislike, or even hatred to himself. That is the fate of Baba Eto !

 

There must be something extra going for the “priestly-politico” that the talent-discoverer, otherwise known as Bola Ahmed Tinubu, identified him to drive his gubernatorial campaign in Lagos State; and has ever since held on to him so fanatically that he has solely led the campaign of other guber candidates like Babatunde Raji Fashola, Akunwunmi Ambode and Babajide Sanwoolu to roaring successes.

 

If beneficiaries of Baba Eto’s gifts turn round to paint scurrilous pictures of the man, such people can only be consigned to the dustbin in which immortal Chief Obafemi Awolowo put those he described as ingrates of his large-ness of heart. As the late sage declared: ” There’s no escape for those who deny benefits”

 

Let the person without any blemish come out and cast the first stone. If we put aside belly-aching, jealousy and such-like vices, you cannot encounter Odunmbaku, Baba Eto, on the pulpit or the political rostrum and not doff your hats for this quintessential orator, mobiliser and professor of political mobilisation.

 

If some see him negatively from the positive binoculars with which Tinubu and many more view Baba Eto, then such minority must be wearing blurry blinkers in their faces.

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Just In: Bobrisky Sentenced To 6-Month Jail Term Without Option Of Fine Over Naira Abuse

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Instagram crossdresser, Idris Okuneye popularly know as Bobrisky has been sentenced to 6-month jail term by Justice A.O Awogboro of the Federal high court, Ikoyi.

 

It was earlier reported that Bobrisky was Arraigned and charged to court by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for abuse of the Naira note.

 

 

 

More details to come …..

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