Group petitions EFCC seeking investigation, prosecution of UBA, Fidelity Bank over Maina money laundering case

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An advocacy group, The Centre for Anti-Corruption and Open Leadership (CACOL), on Friday petitioned Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) demanding the investigation and possibly prosecution of the United Bank of Africa (UBA) and Fidelity Bank PLC for their involvement in money laundering case in which former chairman of defunct Pension Reforms Task Team, Abdulrasheed Maina, has been found guilty and sentenced to eight years imprisonment by the court.

CACOL in the “petition Asking EFCC to investigate and possibly prosecute United Bank of Africa and Fidelity Bank for their involvement in Abdulrasheed Maina’s Money Laundering Case”, dated Friday, November 12, 2021, signed by the Chairman, Debo Adeniran, noted that from the investigations of the commission as revealed during the court processes, United Bank of Africa and Fidelity Bank PLC were culpable for aiding fraud and were used by Maina as “conduit” to defraud pensioners, saying, “and they ought to have been charged alongside Maina.”

CACOL, in the petition addressed to the EFCC chairman through the Lagos Office, noted that Fidelity Bank allegedly provided the channels with which the convicted Abdulrasheed Maina used in defrauding the federal government, arguing: “and for this reason, the license of the bank ought to have been withdrawn as the bank benefited from the proceeds of illegal transactions.”

CACOL noted that even the judge, Justice Okon Abang, declared that the convict, through the assistance of Fidelity Bank Plc, deprived the pensioners that gave their all to this country in their youthful age, their legitimate earnings, “Whereas the convict was feeding fat on their sweat in faraway Dubai, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), buying choice properties, driving bulletproof cars, living in affluence beyond his legitimate earnings”.

“To this end, we hereby call for appropriate sanctions to be meted out to these banks, which may include the withdrawal of their operating licenses, punishment and prosecution of offending bank officials,” CACOL declared.

CACOL maintained: “Sir, we are encouraged to submit this petition to you based on our resolve to always expose any corrupt act(s) being perpetrated by anyone either in public or private sphere.

“Moreover, this petition is directed at your good offices, knowing that statutorily, it is the primary responsibility of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate and prosecute this kind of cases and we have no doubt that you will do due diligence in carrying out this assignment for public good.

“We are thanking you for your anticipated cooperation, detailed investigation and diligent prosecution, if need be.

“We would also urge you to please keep us posted about the progress being made on the case from time to time.”

CACOL copied the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in the petition.

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