Following their failure to answer to the fraud charges filed against them, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has declared a former Director General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Ambassador Ayodele Oke and his wife, Folasade, wanted.
The anti-graft agency had made a request through its counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo for an arrest warrant, and Justice Chukwujeku Aneke of a Federal High Court in Lagos granted the application on February 7, 2019.
The couple is facing a four-count charge bordering on money laundering offence to the tune of N13 billion.
One of the counts reads thus:
“That you, Amb. Ayodele Oke and Mrs. Folasade Ayodele Oke between 25th day of August 2015 and 2nd day of September 2015 in Lagos, with in the jurisdiction of this court directly converted $160,777,136.85 property of the Federal Government of Nigeria to your own use which sum you reasonably ought to have known formed part of proceeds of an unlawful act to wit: criminal breach of trust and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15 (2) (d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act 2012 and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same Act.”
Prior to this time
The EFCC had in April 2017, stormed an apartment on Osborne road, Ikoyi where $43 million, N23.2 million and £27,800) was recovered. Investigations revealed that the apartment belonged to Folashade Oke, wife of Ambassador Ayodele Oke, the former DG of the NIA. The NIA then claimed the funds recovered where for a covert operation.
It was reported that the funds were misapplied, and the withdrawal a breach of due process. The funds in question were paid directly to the then NIA DG Ayodele Oke, rather than the agency’s accounts.
Meanwhile, Union Bank had previously claimed ownership
After news broke about the cash hidden in the Osbourne building, Union Bank Plc claimed ownership of the property. According to the lender, the property was earlier presented as collateral for a loan granted to Tripple A Ltd. It was revealed that Union bank had sold the building to Chobe Ventures Limited to liquidate the loan.
However, EFCC argued that the funds used by Chobe Ventures Limited to purchase the property belonged to the Federal Government. It was also disclosed that the property documents found in the building revealed that directors to Chobe Ventures were Folashade Oke and Ayodele Oke.