November 16, 2011
An Ikeja High Court, was, Tuesday, told how the former Managing Director of Intercontinental Bank Plc, Dr. Erastus Akingbola, allegedly siphoned N18.6 billion belonging to the bank through three companies, which he was a signatory.
Led in evidence by Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, counsel, Mr. Godwin Obla, star prosecution witness, Mr Abdulraheem Jimoh, gave detailed account of how the former banker used his companies to loot the bank’s treasury.
Jimoh, who is a Chief Inspector with the bank, told the court that the money was transferred from the bank’s vault in trenches through cheque movement at different times.
Though, the prosecution’s evidence was not without intermittent interventions from Akingbola’s counsel, who made several attempts to stop the evidence of the prosecution’s witness.
He said instructions for the payments were usually verbal, an act he described as an abnormal practice in the banking industry.
He said: “It is not the practice for instructions to be carried out verbally. There were instances when Akingbola gave verbal instruction for transfer of funds.”
At a point, he gave verbal instruction for the transfer of £1.3 million from the bank to Royal Bank of England and it was carried out through what is known as ‘swift message.”
He said the transactions were always executed through the Head of Finance Control Department, Mr. Akin Fabunmi, adding that it was also the usual practice of Fabunmi to raise a memo directing that payments be made.
“Fabunmi also raises a form known as ‘Output form’ to process the payment, the form shows which account was supposed to accommodate payments,” he said.