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How we evacuated N1.2 billion for Fayose, by witness

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Ayo Fayose

[FILE PHOTO] Fayose.

The trial of former Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State over alleged N6.9 billion fraud continued yesterday with a top official of a bank narrating to the court how the bank took a bullion van to the airport to evacuate N1.219 billion from an aircraft.

The official said the bank rendered the service at the request of Abiodun Agbele, an aide to Fayose.

He told the court that a former Minister of State for Defence, Musiliu Obanikoro, was present during the operation at the airport “but we did not interact.”

The official said on taking the N1.219 billion to the bank, Agbele supplied three bank accounts into which the money was to be lodged.

He listed the three accounts as those of Privateer Nigeria Limited, Spotless Investment Limited and “a personal account of His Excellency (Fayose).”

The official, who was led in evidence by the prosecuting counsel for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), also listed “Ayodele Fayose and Mrs. Olayemi Fayose” as the signatories to the account of Spotless Investment Limited.

When asked under cross-examination by Fayose’s counsel, Mr. Ola Olanipekun (SAN), whether “seeing such volume of money being paid into your bank,” the bank reported the N1.219 billion cash lodgment to the authorities as “illicit or suspicious,” the official said: “It was reported.”

He explained that it was the standard practice that banks must report cash transactions above N1 million for an individual and N5 million for a corporate body.

When Olanipekun asked that “pursuant to the report, did you get any instruction to stop the transaction?” the official said: “No.”

When the defence counsel asked whether the official would agree with him that “the transaction was not stopped because it was deemed appropriate,” the banker said he agreed.

“You also agree that the defendant invited your bank because they too believed the transaction was appropriate?” Olanipekun asked and responding, the official said: “Yes.”

When the second defence counsel, Mr. Olalekan Ojo (SAN), told the bank official that “at no time did you see the first defendant (Fayose) filling any teller at any branch of your bank, either in Ekiti or Akure,” the banker said, “Excellency will not do that.”

Justice C. J. Aneke adjourned further proceedings till today.


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