Three bank accounts belonging to the Lagos State Government were on Tuesday frozen by the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos.
The court placed a restriction on any transaction from the affected accounts by the state government or any of its agents.
The affected accounts are domiciled in First City Monument Bank, Access Bank and Zenith Bank.
Reason for suspension? Justice Chuka Obiozor gave the order after fraud charges were filed against the Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Chief of Staff to Governor of Lagos State, Adewale Adesanya.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) filed a suit against Adesanya, who was accused of involvement in money laundering last year.
According to the EFCC, an FCMB bank account, which was opened on September 17, 2018 and operated by Adesanya, allegedly received the sum of N9.9 billion from the state accounts.
Supporting their request for the accounts to be frozen, the EFCC’s investigating team led by Kungmi Daniel, said the timing of the transfers showed the attempt by Adesanya and the other signatories to the account to fraudulently transfer funds from the state accounts.
The EFCC took the step after the matter was analysed and found it worthy of investigation. In order to close loopholes and prevent more fraudulent activities through the accounts, the EFCC filed an ex -parte motion to freeze the accounts.
This will also enable the anti-graft agency to temporarily take over the accounts pending conclusion of investigations on the matter.
“The trend is that the there is always huge inflow from Lagos State Government in the above-scheduled accounts managed by the respondent (Adesanya).”
“There have been concerted efforts and attempts to dissipate the contents of the accounts listed in the schedule to this application.
“Without freezing the nominated accounts and temporarily forfeiting the money to the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, there is no way the fraud being perpetrated using the scheduled accounts can be stopped,” the EFCC said.
After granting their request, the court adjourned further proceedings in the matter till August 9.
The affected accounts are – First City Monument Bank (5617984012/ Permanent Secretary, Chief of Staff, Access Bank ( 0060949275/Permanent Secretary, Chief of Staff and Zenith Bank ( 1011691254/ Permanent Secretary, Chief of Staff to Lagos Government, respectively.
NIN registration: 54 million Nigerians have now enrolled – Buhari
12 million Nigerians were enrolled into the National Identity Database in the past 6 months.
President Muhammadu Buhari disclosed that the FG has enrolled 54 million Nigerians into the National Identity Database, citing that 12 million were enrolled in the past 6 months alone and that the final aim of the scheme is to secure Nigeria’s security infrastructure.
President Buhari disclosed this in a statement on Thursday evening.
What the President said about NIN enrollment
“I am pleased with the success we are recording in the enrollment of persons into the National Identification Number (NIN) database. 54 million Nigerians have now enrolled; I am told over 12 million of these within the last six months. Our goal is total coverage.
The National Identification Number (NIN) is the foundational digital ID for the country. It will cover one of the weaknesses in our security structure. We will be able to easily identify all Nigerians, including the crooks in our midst.”
The President added that both legal residents and Nigerians are expected to obtain the NIN as it would be beneficial to government agencies to utilise resources efficiently.
In case you missed it
The Federal Government announced a further extension of the ongoing National Identification Number (NIN) registration and linkage with Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) exercises to a new deadline of June 30, 2021.
Labour set for showdown with FG, rejects plan to reduce salaries
The NLC president demanded an increase in the remunerations and allowances of Nigerian workers.
The Organised Labour appears set for a showdown with the Federal Government as they have condemned and rejected the government’s plan to cut down salaries of Nigerian workers.
This follows the recent statement credited to the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, in which she revealed the Federal Government’s plan to reduce the cost of governance by cutting down workers’ salaries.
This disclosure was contained in a statement issued by the President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Ayuba Waba, on Wednesday in Abuja, in which he expressed shock and noted that the plan was tantamount to a mass suicide wish for Nigerian workers.
What the NLC President is saying
Waba in his statement said, “The minister also allegedly directed the National Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission (NSIWC), to immediately review the salaries of civil servants as well as the number of federal agencies in the country.
It is most unthinkable that the government would be contemplating to unilaterally slash the salaries of Nigerian workers at this time.
He added that “The question to ask is which salary is the government planning to slash? It certainly cannot be the meager national minimum wage of N30, 000, which right now cannot even buy a bag of rice.”
The NLC President said that he believed the proposed salary slash was certainly not targeted at the minimum wage and consequential adjustment in salaries that some state governors were still dragging their feet to pay.
He said that the multiple devaluations of the Naira in a short time, and the prevailing high inflation rate in Nigeria had negatively impacted on the salaries earned by Nigerian workers across the board.
He said, “Nigerian workers are only surviving by hair’s breadth. Indeed, Nigerian workers are miracles strutting on two legs.
“It is, therefore, extremely horrendous for a minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to pronounce salary slash for Nigerian workers currently. This call for salary slash by Mrs Zainab Ahmed is tantamount to a “mass suicide” wish, for Nigerian workers.”
While demanding an immediate retraction and apology by the Minister of Finance, the NLC president, however, said that if there was any salary that needed serious slashing, it was the humongous remuneration and allowances pocketed by political office holders in Nigeria, who did extraordinarily little but collected so much.
Wabba said, “Workers generate surplus value and revenue for the government. We do not constitute any unnecessary cost or burden to governance. It is also important to make the point that salaries are products of contracts governed by laws. They cannot be unilaterally adjusted.”
This move is not only at great odds with global best responses to the COVID-19 pandemic but also in violation of relevant ILO Conventions and Declarations on Wages and Decent Work. We urge the government as a social partner to quickly respond to the demands by Labour for an upward review of salaries of all Nigerian workers.
Nigerian workers have shown sufficient understanding with the government through the tough patches of the pandemic. Now, Nigerian workers demand reciprocity of our understanding. Nigerian workers demand an increase in their remunerations and allowances.”
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