The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has accused Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State of standing in the way of its constitutional duty by storming a bank with thugs and his personal security and forcefully securing the release of wife of a former Aviation Minister, Femi Fani-Kayode, following order by the commission for her arrest while attempting withdrawal from flagged account.
EFCC also claimed the governor vowed to close down the branch of the bank, saying the commission had no power to detain anybody in his state.
The anti-graft agency had on Monday alleged that Femi Fani-Kayode, operated at least 15 accounts with GTBank and two with Diamond Bank, an allegation the former minister had touted as witch-hunt and attempt to starve and harass him and his family.
The commission said it was in response to Fani-Kayode’s claim that it tried to arrest his wife and toddler in Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital.
Fani-Kayode admitted that the commission had frozen several accounts belonging to him and his wife, Chikwendu Sonia.
He said his wife had gone to withdraw money from another account when the EFCC allegedly tried to arrest her.
“This was an account that has 200,000 naira in it and that has never had more than 500,000.
“She has operated it since 2005 and she stopped using it in 2013. The account has no connection with me and I did not know it existed till today,” he said, accusing the EFCC of witchunting him for opposing the Muhammadu Buhari administration.
The EFCC, however, disputed that claim, saying the account had a balance of over N2 million.
The EFCC also denied arresting or detaining Mr. Fani-Kayode’s wife or kid.
Explaining events leading to the development, the anti-graft agency stated as follows: “The wife of Femi Fani-Kayode and her child are not in the custody of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, and were never detained by the Commission.
“Contrary to the media spin about the purported arrest of mother and child, a certain Chikwendu Sonia today attempted to withdraw money from an Access Bank account that had been placed on ‘Post No Debit’ Category, following the discovery of illicit cash flows into the account.
“She was intercepted by the bank while the Commission was notified but because it was late, the EFCC advised that the suspect be taken to the police station for processing and release on bail.
“They were arranging to take the suspect to the police station when Governor Ayo Fayose stormed the bank with thugs and his personal security and forcefully secured the release of the suspect, with claims that the EFCC had no power to detain anybody in his state. He also vowed to close down the branch of the bank.
“The said account, which had a balance of N 2,307,712.82 was flagged following investigation into the PDP Joint Trust fund when the Commission traced N1.1billion to the Zenith Bank account of Fani-Kayode.
“It was discovered that the account had two biometric identification numbers, one for Fani-Kayode and the other (with BVN 2205597283)for Sonia Chikwendu. The same BVN is linked to 2 other accounts in Diamond bank and 15 accounts in Guaranty Trust Bank.”