Soldiers allegedly keep watch as Fayose’s aide receive N1.2bn at airport

Former Ekiti governor Ayodele Fayose.

The N2.2bn money laundering trial of former Governor Ayodele Fayose continued on Monday with Zenith Bank manager, Akure branch, Mr Sunday Alade, testifying as the 11th prosecution witness.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission is prosecuting Fayose, alongside a firm, Spotless Limited, for allegedly receiving N2.2bn from the office of the National Security Adviser in 2014.

The prosecution said Fayose used the money to prosecute his governorship election in Ekiti.

Led in evidence by the prosecuting counsel for the EFCC, Mr Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), Alade narrated to the court how Fayose’s aide, Abiodun Agbele, accompanied by soldiers and mobile policemen, went to Akure Airport to take delivery of N1.2bn transported in two aircraft.

Alade said, “On the 17th of June 2014, I was in my office in Zenith Bank, Akure. I received a call from my head of operations, Abiodun Oshodi, that a customer would be coming to make deposit into his account with the bank.

“He said in order to provide security, we should arrange for a bullion van to go to the airport to pick the cash.

“After an hour, my head of operations, Abiodun Oshodi, came and said the customer had arrived. He introduced Abiodun Agbele as the customer.

“He said we should prepare to go to the airport. I asked for time to arrange for security, but they said that won’t be necessary as they had sufficient security.  They came with MOPOL and some soldiers in a Hilux van.”

The witness said he joined Oshodi and Agbele to the airport, along with the bullion van and the security men.

Alade added, “At the airport, we waited for a few minutes before the arrival of the aircraft. Three individuals came out of the aircraft.

“Two of them walked away. The remaining person introduced himself as O. Adewale. The cash was offloaded into the bullion van and we drove to Zenith Bank Akure.”

He said when they arrived at the bank, the money was counted in his presence. He said Oshodi, Adewale and Agbele were also present.

“The money was counted in our presence. It was N724m. We were informed that there was a balance. We went back to the airport and picked N494m. The total cash amounted to N1.219bn.

“I gathered that the cash was lodged in three bank accounts – those of De-Privateer, Spotless Investment and Ayodele Fayose.

“I also understand some cash was taken away that day by Mr Agbele.”

Asked who Adewale was, he said, “Adewale O. introduced himself as Obanikoro’s ADC (aide-de-camp).”

Asked if he knew those who walked away from the aircraft after it landed, the witness said, “One of them resembled Obanikoro. I never met him in person. But he resembled the person I saw on television and newspapers.”

While being cross-examined by the counsel,  Messrs Ola Olanipekun (SAN) and Olalekan Ojo (SAN), Alade said he did not know where the money came from.

Asked if he knew what the money was meant for, he said, “Not at all.”

After Alade’s testimony, Jacobs asked for an adjournment, saying he could not take more than one witness as he was involved in an accident.

The prosecutor came to court on Monday on crutches with one of his legs in a bandage.

Justice Mojisola Olatoregun adjourned further proceedings till May 10.


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