Health and Safety Politics

Skye Bank collapse: EFCC files charges against Tunde Ayeni

Written by Maritime First

…As Army says ‘We operated within legal boundary’***

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday filed ten charges against the former chairman of Skye Bank Plc, Mr Tunde Ayeni, over alleged laundering of about 21billion naira.

The cash in question was withdrawn from the Suspense Account of the bank by Ayeni and allegedly spent on different types of favour to people.

Ayeni, who has been in custody in the last four weeks, may be formally arraigned on Monday at the Federal High Court, Abuja.

He will face trial with a former Managing Director of Skye Bank, Timothy Ajani Oguntayo; Control Dredging Company and Royaltex Paramount Ventures Limited pursuant to Section 109(d) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015.

Ayeni was said to have transferred N3,000,000,000.00 (three billion naira) from the defunct Skye Bank Plc Suspense Account to the First City Monument Bank Plc account no. 0758662025 of Control Dredging Company Limited.

The anti-graft agency also  charged Ayeni for allegedly transferring another N1,250 000, 000.00 (one billion, two hundred and fifty million naira) from the defunct Skye Bank Plc Suspense Account to the Skye Bank Plc account no. 1770380476 of Royaltex Paramount Ventures Limited.

Some of the charges are as follows:

“That you, Tunde Ayeni, whilst being the chairman, Board of Directors of the defunct Skye Bank Plc and Timothy Ajani Oguntayo, while being the Managing Director (MD) of the defunct Skye Bank Plc, on or about 24th December, 2014 at Abuja within the Abuja Judicial Division of this honourable court did conspire to commit an offence to wit, money laundering by transferring the sum of N3,000,000,000.00 (three billion naira) from the defunct Skye Bank Plc Suspense Account to the First City Monument Bank Plc account no. 0758662025 of Control Dredging Company Limited which money you reasonably ought to have known forms part of the proceeds of an unlawful act, to wit; fraud and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 18(a) and punishable under section 15(2)(b) and (3) of the money laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended).

”That you, Tunde Ayeni, whilst being the Chairman, Board of Directors of the defunct Skye Bank Plc and Timothy Ajani Oguntayo, while being the Managing Director (MD) of the defunct Skye Bank Plc on or about the 24th December, 2014 at Abuja within the jurisdiction of this honourable court did commit an offence to wit,  transferring the sum of N3,000,000,000.00 (three billion naira) from defunct Skye Bank Plc Suspense Account to the First City Monument Bank Plc account no. 0758662025 of Control Dredging Company Limited which money you reasonably ought to have known forms part of the proceeds of an unlawful act, to wit;  fraud and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under section 15(2)(b) and (3) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended).

”That you, Tunde Ayeni, whilst being the Chairman, Board of Directors of the defunct Skye Bank Plc and Control Dredging Company Limited on or about the 24th December, 2014 at Abuja within the jurisdiction of this honourable court did commit an offence to wit, converting the sum of N3,000,000,000.00 (three billion naira) transferred from Skye Bank Plc Suspense Account to the First City Monument Bank Plc account no. 0758662025 of Control Dredging Company Limited which money you reasonably ought to have known forms part of the proceeds of an unlawful act, to  wit; fraud and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under section 15(2)(b)(3) and (4) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended).

”That you, Tunde Ayeni, whilst being the Chairman, Board of Directors of the defunct Skye Bank Plc and Timothy Ajani Oguntayo, while being the Managing Director (MD) of the defunct Skye Bank Plc, on or about 25th March, 2015 at Abuja within the Abuja Judicial Division of this honourable court did conspire to commit an offence to wit, money laundering by transferring the sum of N1,250 000, 000.00 (one billion two hundred and fifty naira) from the defunct Skye bank Plc Suspense Account to the Skye Bank Plc account no. 1770380476 of Royaltex Paramount Ventures Limited which money you reasonably ought to have known forms part of the proceeds of an unlawful act, to wit; fraud and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 18(a) and punishable under section 15(2)(b) (3) and of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended)”.

It would be recalled that the EFCC had quizzed Ayeni for alleged multiple fraud, including a controversial N1billion donation to the campaign funds of ex-President Goodluck Jonathan in 2011 by Aso Savings and Loans Plc.

In the meantime, the Nigerian Army on Saturday said its activities in the just-concluded Presidential and National Assembly polls were within the ambit of the law and rules of engagement.

Reacting to allegations of partisanship, coercion and shooting of voters in some areas across the country during the elections, it said that soldiers deployed on election duty were professional and proactive in their conduct.

According to Spokesman of the army, Col. Sagir Musa, “we acted within the requirements of the law, rules of engagement and code of conduct”.

During the elections, there were widespread allegations of partisanship, brutality of soldiers on some electorate and Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) officials, and partisanship in the process.

Electoral officers in some states, including Rivers, Lagos and Delta, accused the military of interfering in the elections.

The soldiers were fingered in shootings that resulted in deaths of many people, and other unwholesome acts allegedly recorded in some states during the polls.

But, Musa told News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the army made its position clear before, during and after the elections.

He pointed out that monitors of the elections had commended the army for its role while the exercise lasted.

“Our position stands on the verdict given by local and foreign election monitors that commended the Nigerian Army for being professional, proactive, responsive and unbiased,” the spokesman said.

The Nation

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Maritime First