Nigeria’s anti-corruption watchdog, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has told a court in Lagos that wife of the suspended intelligence chief, bought the apartment where cash amounts of over $43m and other currencies were recently recovered.
According to the EFCC, Ayo Oke’s wife, Folashade Oke through a company, Chobe Ventures Limited bought the property that is located at Flat 7B, 13, Osborne Road, Osbourne Towers in the upscale area of Ikoyi in the commercial capital, Lagos.
The April 13 seizure involved $43m, £27,800 and 23.2m Naira – all in cash, in the Lagos apartment upon a tip from a whistle blower.
The EFCC’s lawyer told the court on Friday May 5 that Oke made a total cash payment of $1.658m for the purchase of the flat between August 25 and September 3, 2015 in the name of a company, which is not into any business but which Mrs. Oke and her son, Ayodele Oke Junior, are said to be directors of.
Oke was said to have made the cash payment in three tranches of $700,000, $650,000 and $353,700 to a Bureau de Change company, Sulah Petroleum and Gas Limited, which later converted the sums into N360,000,000 and subsequently paid it to an estate company for the purchase of the property.
The prosecution counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, tendered as exhibit the receipt issued by the estate agent to Chobe Ventures Limited. The EFCC is demanding for a final forfeiture of the sum to the federal government after no one came forward to claim ownership of the money despite an advert in the newspapers.
Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday, April 19, 2017, suspended two top officials of his administration and ordered a probe headed by his Vice-President, Yemi Osinbajo.
The two officials, Babachir Lawal – Secretary General of the Federation (SGF) and Ambassador Ayo Oke – Director General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) – the country’s spy agency – were both mentioned in corruption related cases.
Ayo was connected to the cash discovery by the EFCC after he said the monies belonged to his outfit and Lawal on allegations that his company misappropriated funds meant for Boko Haram victims. The Vice-President’s committee will present their report to Buhari on Monday.