EFCC to arraign Fayose on 11-count charge
By Olisemeka Obeche
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is set to arraign the immediate past Governor of Ekiti state, Ayodele Fayose, at the Federal High Court in Lagos on Monday.
Fayose would be arraigned before Justice Mojisola Olatoregun on 11 counts bordering on financial fraud and embezzlement.
The former governor has been in the custody of the EFCC where he is being grilled. He is accused of receiving about N1.3bn when he “ought to have known that the said fund formed part of the proceeds of an unlawful activity of Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.), the then National Security Adviser, and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 18(a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended in 2012) and punishable under Section 15 (3) of the same Act.”
Meanwhile, the EFCC has listed 22 witnesses who will testify in the trial. According to the charge sheet, Musiliu Obanikoro, a former minister is one of those listed as witnesses. Five other operatives of the EFCC would also testify about their findings during the investigation.
Listed as number one is Mr. Ayotunde Owope, an accounts officer of the embattled Governor Ayodele Fayose, who opened an account with the bank and is expected to give evidence on how funds were transferred from one account to another account.
Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, who was a minister of defence during and before the Ekiti governorship election in 2014 around June 2014 and allegedly played principal role in collection of the funds from the former NSA, (Col. Sambo Dasuki rtd). Also set to testify against Fayose is Salisu Shuaibu, the director of finance in the office of national security adviser. Alex Otti, then group managing director of Diamond Bank Plc. and Jamilu Uba, the proprietor and director of Kofar Naisa Investment Nigeria Limited and a Bureau De Change operator.
According to the charge, Fayose and Mr. Abiodun Agbele on or about 17th June, 2014 in Lagos, without going through the financial institution received cash payment in the sum of $5,000,000 from Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, the then minister of state for defence. Fayose was equally accused of retaining in his fixed deposit account No: 9013074033 with Zenith Bank Plc, the sum of N300,000,000.00 which formed part of proceeds of an unlawful act.