Good Governance and Accountability Monitors Group has called for the arrest and prosecution of the Chairman of First City Monument Bank, FCMB, Ladi Balogun.
The group in a statement issued Tuesday in Abuja by its Coordinator, Opeolumi Adeniyi and Secretary, Isaiah Moses, alleged that the chairman allowed his bank to be a platform that is used in aiding and abetting corruption especially in our banking sector.
The group’s demand was necessitated by revelations in the ongoing investigation of the embattled former anti corruption czar, Ibrahim Magu of the Economic And Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), where the bank was caught in the middle of shoddy transaction.
The Executive officer of the First City Monument Bank, Ahmed Nuru, during his appearance before the Justice Ayo Salami Presidential panel, said his bank ‘mistakenly paid the sum of #473m into the account of pastor Omale’.
The group said the fact that somebody of the position of Ibrahim Magu, who before his disgraceful fall, was head of the nation’s anti-corruption agency can be found wanting for financial malfeasance, speaks volumes.
“As Nigerians and stakeholders in the drive to rescue our beloved country from the precipice it is being pushed into, we are worried that Mr. Ladi Balogun would shamelessly and without considerations to the fight against corruption, expose the FCMB to such ridicule and then claim that his bank mistakenly credited an account with such humungous amount of money and, only realized after four years that such an amount was paid into the wrong account.
“We are therefore, compelled to demand from the Nigerian Government; especially the Presidency that it compels Mr. Ahmed Nuru that he provides answers to these questions.
“Who provided the account details that the said #573m (five hundred and seventy three million) was paid into and, who approved the transaction?
“Who was the officer that verified the account?
“Is Ladi Balogun telling Nigerians that his bank did not carry out internal and external audit of its accounts and banks since 2016?
“Why did it take Ladi Balogun and his board, four years to realize that his organization credited a wrong account with such a huge sum?
“Whose bank account was the amount debited and how is it that the owner of the said account failed to notice such a huge withdrawal and transaction?
“Is this not a self-indictment of the management of the capabilities of the Ladi Balogun owned FCMB that it is involved in money laundering and financial crimes?”
The group further called on President Muhammadu Buhari to protect the banking sector by ensuring that funds are protected.
He should immediately direct the EFCC, NFIU, DSS to instigate an immediate probe of Mr. Ahmed Nuru.
“We also call on both Houses of the National Assembly; the Senate and the House of Representatives to immediately, on resumption hold a Public Hearing to look into this criminality against the collective well-being of Nigerians as it affects the sacredness of our financial institutions that have now been turned into a conduit pipe for the laundering of our resources, the Ladi Balogun run FCMB.
“Also, the Minority Leaders in both Houses of the NASS should, as a matter of national emergency, ensure that this financial sleaze by the FCMB, under the eyes of Ladi Balogun is thoroughly investigated and all those involved and found culpable, be prosecuted immediately.”
Agric Minister Shield’s Factional AFAN Leader From Police Invitation
The minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Alhaji Sabo Nanono, on Friday, 17th June, 2021 at the ICC (International Conference Centre), in Abuja prevented policemen on duty from taking factional leader of the All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) Mr Farouk Rabiu for questioning on fraud related matters.
According to reliable sources and eye witnesses at the scene which was the venue of the 2021, Council on Agriculture, the police were there to invite Farouk to Force headquarters following a petition against him for acts that bordered on criminality.
Recently a federal high court sitting in Abuja had cautioned the renegade group led by Farouk through their lawyer, on Wednesday,15/2/2021, against parading themselves as leaders of AFAN until the matter is determined in court.
Farouk had been accused of defrauding investors using the name of AFAN Kano branch which he illegally registered, a matter which had been brought before the Corporate Affairs Commission, who revoked the registration.
However, Farouk has been continuously recognised as the leader of AFAN, by the Minister who hails from the same state with him despite several petitions from the Arc Kabir Ibrahim led executive.
The minister’s actions in siding with Farouk despite a case in court to resolve the leadership tussle of AFAN, has been allegedly linked to the minister’s shameful removal as chairman of AFAN Kano, long before he became appointed minister.
Witnesses at the scene stated that the minister after frantic efforts to get the Inspector General on phone to call off his men failed, resorted to giving an unhindered exit to Farouk in his official car, tantamount to obstruction of justice, much to the chagrin of the police officers.
A reliable source further disclosed that the policemen declined to follow the minister to his office.
Three Soldiers Injured as Troops Kill ISWAP Terrorists in Borno
Troops of the Nigerian Army under the Operation Hadin Kai have killed several ISWAP Terrorists in Dikwa town, Borno State.
According to a statement issued on Wednesday by the Director Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Mohammed Yerima, the gallant troops decisively dealt with the terrorists who were attempting to infiltrate the town on Tuesday.
The terrorist elements were said to have mounted five gun trucks, others mounted motorcycles, while others moved by foot.
They were, however, met with superior fire power by troops in conjunction with air bombardment by Air Task Force.
“The marauding terrorists were thoroughly vanquished forcing them to withdraw in high state of confusion abandoning their truck, guns and ammunition,” the statement read.
“During the encounter, six members of the terrorists groups were neutralized, several others were severely injured while the survivors withdrew in total disarray leaving behind their deceased colleagues”.
Three soldiers, however, sustained various degrees of injuries but have now been stabilised.
Items recovered during the encounter included one gun truck, eight AK 47 rifles, 40 rounds of 7.62mm Special, 39 special ammo, three motorcycles and six magazines.
To mop up the area, troops conducted exploitation in the early hours of Wednesday in conjunction with the Civilian Joint Task Force and hunters along the terrorists’ withdrawal routes and recovered 90 rounds of 7.62 mm x 54 on links belonging to the fleeing terrorists.
Meanwhile, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Major General Faruk Yahaya, has commended the gallant troops over the feat and charged them to remain resolute and steadfast.
He urged them to maintain the tempo in order to ensure total obliteration of terrorist groups within the North East region.
Onion Marketers Threaten to Stop Supply to Southern Nigeria
The Onion Producers and Marketers Association of Nigeria has threatened to stop the supply of onions down to the South from June 7, 2021.
The group said it would carry out the threat if the government fails to compensate its members who have suffered losses in recent times following attacks in some parts of the country.
President of the association, Aliyu Umar, made this known to journalists at a press briefing on Sunday in Sokoto State.
He explained that the government under a committee led by the Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello had promised to compensate their members, many of whom suffered huge losses in Abia, Imo and Oyo States during the #EndSARS and Shasha market crisis.
However, according to him, the promise has not been kept and the members have reportedly lost over 4 billion naira.
“We are calling on the state and Federal Government to restore law and order in the state, and we are calling on the good people of the southern part of Nigeria to live with the Hausa community in peace as we are only there for our lawful businesses,” Umar said.
“We also call on state governments to collaborate with fed govt to set up a committee to investigate the incident that led to the loss of lives and property of the Onion Association members.
“Furthermore, if the government fails to adhere to what we are saying, we are shutting the supply of onion to the entire south by Monday the 7th of June 2021”.
In recent times, the price of Onions skyrocketed from just about ₦20,000 to nearly a hundred thousand, in less than a year – a situation which quickly gave it the reputation of ‘new gold’.
While the price hike could not be understood by many, some traders have attributed the increment to seasonal fluctuations, a general increase in prices of fertilizers among other items, strike actions as well as insecurity arising from the #EndSARS protests.
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