On Thursday, March 29, 2018, the Managing Director of Heritage Bank — one of Nigeria’s leading commercial banks — Ifiesimama Sekibo was charged to the Federal High Court, Lagos, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC over an alleged ₦605 million fraud.

Heritage Bank MD, Ifie Sekibo
Heritage Bank MD, Ifie Sekibo

According to the EFCC, Ifiesimama Sekibo, including two other entities (Greame Properties Ltd, a company, and Kolapo Daisi, another individual) has defaulted in a couple of counts, which has summed up to the alleged amount. As alleged by the EFCC prosecutor, Ekene Iheanacho, the Heritage Bank MD illegally acquired the sum of ₦180 million, through his own company, Greame Properties Ltd. and had failed to declare.

While being a bank employee, to wit: Managing Director of Heritage Bank, acquired the sum of ₦180 million beyond your legitimate income through Greame Properties Limited, a company owned by you.”

As reported by Sahara Reporters, Ekene Iheanacho who signed the sheet said:

 The bank chief violated both Section 7(1) of the Heritage Bank Employees’ Declaration of Assets’ Code, and Act, Cap B1, Laws of the Nigerian Federation 2004. As such he is liable to be punished under Section 7(2) of the same Act.”

In the second count, the Heritage Bank MD was indicted for conniving to:

retain in the Diamond Bank Plc account number 0006129214 operated by Greame Properties Limited, the sum of N180m received from the account of Vlamings Professionals Limited when you reasonably ought to know that the said money was direct proceeds of your unlawful activity, to wit: conspiracy and fraud.”

This act, according to the EFCC, contradicts the Section 15(2)(d) of the Money Laundering Act 2011 (as amended by Act No. 1 of 2012) and are liable to punishment under Section 15(3) of the same Act.

The third count was that Sekibo acquired ₦125, 321, 051.05 beyond his income, through the Diamond Bank Plc account of FIFC Development and Management Limited operated by him.

In the fourth count, the EFCC said Sekibo allegedly conspired with Kolapo Daisi to “transfer the sum of ₦300m proceeds of unlawful activity,” into the account of Hiltrans Global Investment Limited “when you reasonably ought to know that the said fund was fraudulently withdrawn from the account of Heritage Bank Company Limited in Access Bank Plc.”

The court is yet to fix a date for the hearing. And none of the parties has issued a statement concerning this scandal.

This is a developing story…