NIGERIA: Lagos Immediate past governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, has reacted to media reports claiming the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has frozen certain accounts with over N9.9 billion linked to him.
In a statement that was signed by his media aide, Habib Aruna, the former governor said no account of his contained N9.9bn let alone being frozen by the EFCC. He said while he doesn’t want to join issues with the anti-corruption agency at this time especially as there has been no communication between him and the commission on this issue, it is important for him to clarify what he believed was a misleading report of the press statement by the EFCC released on Tuesday August 6th.
According to the former governor, the controversial accounts that were frozen by the Federal High Court, belong to the Lagos State Government and not him or any individual.
“Those accounts were opened in the course of normal operations by the Lagos State Government for its administrative purposes and not for the former Governor’s personal transactions as was being wrongly insinuated and have been operated to ensure smooth operations of government activities by previous and present administrations. The former Governor was not and will never be involved in any unauthorized use of government property and resources.
We strongly believe that after four demanding years as Chief Executive of Lagos State, Mr. Ambode is entitled to some deserved rest with his family and loved ones without the unwarranted attacks on his well-earned reputation.” the statement read
A Federal High Court in Lagos on Tuesday August 6th, ordered the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, to freeze three bank accounts said to belong to the Lagos State Government over an alleged fraud of N9.9 billion. The three bank accounts, domiciled in First City Monument Bank, Access Bank, and Zenith Bank, are numbered 5617984012, 0060949275 and 1011691254, respectively.
The EFCC had approached the court for an order for the accounts to be frozen pending the conclusion of investigation and possible prosecution of the Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Chief of Staff to former Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, Adewale Adesanya. According to an ex-parte application, a member of the EFCC investigating team, Kungmi Daniel, said the commission discovered “a huge inflow of N9,927,714,443.29” from the state accounts into an FCMB bank account opened on September 17, 2018 during the administration of former governor Akinwunmi Ambode and operated by Adesanya.