The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission will on Wednesday (today) arraign Mr. Abiodun Agbele, an ally of Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State, on charges of fraud involving N1.2bn belonging to the Federal Government. The said sum was alleged to be part of the N4.7bn that was mysteriously transferred from the imprest account of the Office of the National Security Adviser to the bank account of Sylvan McNamara, a company allegedly owned by the sons of a former Minister of State for Defence, Senator Musiliu Obanikoro.
Obanikoro allegedly took N1.2bn from the N4.7bn and flew it to Akure during the build-up to the governorship election in Ekiti State and handed the sum to Agbele for onward transfer to Fayose.
It was learnt on Tuesday that the EFCC filed the charges against Agbele before Justice Nnamdi Dimgba of the Federal High Court in Abuja on Monday.
The EFCC had arrested Agbele in Lagos on June 28 and kept him in its custody pending investigations.
The EFCC said the amount was part of the proceeds of economic and financial crime in which Agbele “was found to have allegedly assisted in receiving and concealing in conspiracy with the former Minister of State for Defence, Musiliu Obanikoro, and the Governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose.”
Justice Olukayode Adeniyi of a Federal Capital Territory High Court in Maitama, had on July 21 ordered the EFCC to release Agbele from its custody.
Justice Adeniyi in a ruling on the suspect’s bail application declared the continued detention of the suspect without being charged to court and without the backing of any competent remand order amounted to a “gross violation” of his right.
The judge awarded N5m against the EFCC as compensation to Agbele for his unlawful detention by the anti-graft agency.
Justice Adeniyi in another ruling on Tuesday, dismissed an application by the EFCC seeking an order of stay of execution of the court’s July 21 order.
The anti-graft agency had filed the motion for stay of execution along with its notice of appeal challenging the court’s ruling.