Patience Jonathan’s ally Shagaya’s account lawfully frozen, says EFCC - Uju Ayalogu's Blog for News, Reviews, Articles and More

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Monday 11 February 2019

Patience Jonathan’s ally Shagaya’s account lawfully frozen, says EFCC

Patience Jonathan’s ally Shagaya’s account lawfully frozen, says EFCC

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has told the Federal High Court in Lagos that it lawfully froze the account of a businesswoman and socialite, Hajiya Bola Shagaya.

It prayed the court to dismiss her application seeking to unfreeze it.

Besides, EFCC said Shagaya, an ally of ex-First Lady Dame Patience Jonathan, allegedly frustrated its efforts to conclude investigations on a suspicious Unity Bank account with a balance of over N1.9billion.

The commission said it invited the woman but she refused to honour it.

This, EFCC said, made it difficult “to conclude investigation and file a charge against her.”

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An operative, Oghare Ogbole, in a counter-affidavit opposing Shagaya’s suit, justified the No Debit Order placed on the account.

Justice Muslim Hassan made the interim freezing order on December 29, 2016.

The businesswoman filed an application urging the judge to vacate it.

She said she was denied fair hearing.

But, EFCC claimed that the N1.9billion found in the Unity Bank account was the balance of a total of N3,305,150,000, which Shagaya received as “founder fees” on behalf of an organisation, “Women for Change” being spearheaded by Mrs Jonathan.

The EFCC claimed that the N3.3billion was realised through Shagaya’s “fraudulent activities in the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation,” where she allegedly “influenced the fraudulent allocation of Dual Purpose kerosene to Index Petrolube Africa Ltd., with the aid of the former First Lady, Mrs Dame Patience Jonathan.”

According to the EFCC, the N3.3billion was paid by Index Petrolube Africa Ltd and its sister company, Autodex Nigeria Limited.

The two companies, it said, belong to one Honourable Ezeani ThankGod, adding that the reason for the N3.3bn payment was to “fraudulently facilitate Dual Purpose Kerosene to ThankGod’s company, Index Petrolube Africa Ltd.”

The anti-graft agency claimed that out of the N3.3bn, Shagaya had “paid a cumulative sum of N1,212,000,000 to the former First Lady, Mrs Dame Patience Jonathan, through her account, ‘Women for Change Initiative’ account domiciled in Diamond Bank, to which the former First Lady is the sole signatory.”

It said after paying N1.2billion to Patience, Shagaya kept the balance of N1.9bn for herself by “warehousing” same in her personal bank account in Unity Bank.

The EFCC said it was on this basis that it secured an order of Justice Muslim Hassan of the Federal High Court in Lagos on December 29, 2016 to freeze the account.

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