The Centre for Anti-Corruption and Open Leadership, CACOL, has petitioned the office of the Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Abdulrasheed Bawa asking him to institute a probe and possible prosecution of some banks over their alleged involvement in the money laundering case of the former chairman of now-defunct Pension Reforms Task Team, Abdulrasheed Maina.
According to CACOL’s Chairman, Comrade Debo Adeniran, in the letter he personally signed and sent to the media, “from the EFCC’s investigations as revealed during the court processes, some banks were said to have been found culpable for aiding fraud and were allegedly used by Maina as ‘conduits’ to defraud pensioners and they ought to have been charged alongside Maina”.
Adeniran stated further that the banks, “provided the channels with which the convict (Abdulrasheed Maina) used in defrauding the Federal Government, and for this reason, the licence of the bank ought to have been withdrawn as the bank benefitted from the proceeds of illegal transactions”.
He stressed that even the judge, Justice Okon Abang, had declared that the convict, through the assistance of the fingered banks, deprived the pensioners that gave their all to the country in their youthful age, their legitimate earnings.
“Whereas the convict was feeding fat on their sweat in faraway Dubai, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), buying choice properties, driving bulletproof cars, living in affluence beyond his legitimate earnings”, Adeniran quoted Justice Abang to have stated in his ruling.
The letter reads, “CACOL, as you are aware, is an aggregate of human rights, community-based and civil society organisations and individuals with an anti-corruption and openness in governance agenda across Nigeria. It is a non-political, non-religious, non-sectarian, non-profit organisation.
“Sir, we are encouraged to submit this petition to you based on our resolve to always expose any corrupt act(s) being perpetrated by anyone either in the public or private sphere.
“Moreover, this petition is directed at your good offices, knowing that statutorily, it is the primary responsibility of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate and prosecute this kind of case and we have no doubt that you will do due diligence in carrying out this assignment for the public good.
“We are thanking you for your anticipated cooperation, detailed investigation and diligent prosecution, if need be. We would also urge you to please keep us posted about the progress being made on the case from time to time”.
CACOL added that going by Justice Abang’s ruling and the EFCC’s findings, they were calling for appropriate sanctions to be meted out to these banks which might include the withdrawal of their operating licences, punishment and prosecution of offending bank officials.
It would be recalled that Maina was recently sentenced to eight years imprisonment by Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court, Abuja.
The Centre for Anti-Corruption and Open Leadership, CACOL, is an aggregate of human rights, community based, and civil society organisations with anti-corruption agenda across Nigeria.
It is a non-political, non-religious, non-sectarian, non-profit Coalition.
CACOL sets for itself the tasks of promoting openness in governance and using any available means to cause relevant authorities to probe and bring to book all corrupt leaders both in public and private institutions.