MKO Abiola’s wife, Doyin, to be arraigned for N500m fraud

Mrs. Abiola and three others are charged with misappropriating over N500million which allegedly affected their bank’s liquidity

A Federal High Court in Lagos, on Tuesday, fixed January 22, 2014, for the arraignment of Managing Director of the defunct Integrated Micro-finance Bank, Akinteye Ademola, and three others which include Doyin Abiola, wife of late MKO Abiola.

They are charged with misappropriating over N500million which allegedly affected the bank’s liquidity.

Mr. Akinteye is charged alongside Doyin Abiola, Jerry Orimovuohoma and Oladapo Bello, who were directors of the bank between 2006 and 2008.

They are standing trial on a five-count charge that borders on misappropriation of the bank’s funds, and granting credit facilities to themselves, without collateral.

Mrs Abiola, who was the former managing director of the defunct Concord Newspapers, was on November 26 arrested by the Financial Malpractices Investigation Unit (FMIU) of Special Fraud Unit (SFU) which alleged that between 2006 and 2008, as a director of the Integrated Microfinance Bank, she granted to herself without collateral and approval from the management, the sum of N26,611,246.48.

The case, which was fixed for arraignment on Tuesday, was stalled owing to the absence of three of the defendants.

At the last adjourned date on November 15, the first defendant; Mr. Ademola, was the only one present in court.

This prompted the trial judge, Justice Okon Abang to adjourn the case to enable the prosecution to produce the remaining defendants in court.

When the case was mentioned on Tuesday, the prosecutor, Ernest Ezebilo from the Federal Ministry of Justice, informed the court that the defendants were still absent from court.

The judge therefore ordered hearing notices to be served on them, while he adjourned the case to January 22 for their arraignment.

The defendants were charged for alleged misappropriation of over N500 million, property of the microfinance bank.

They are alleged to have granted credit facilities to themselves and other related companies to the tune of N327, 566, 000.

It was also alleged that Akinteye, while serving as MD of the bank, caused the sum of N131.176million to be withdrawn by one Adewale Ayoade, head of the bank’s treasury, which he converted to his personal use.

According to the charge, Abiola, Orimovuohoma, and Bello, while being directors of the bank, also recklessly granted credit facilities in the sum of N27 million, N26 million and N3.2 million respectively to themselves.

The offence is said to contravene the provisions of Section 19(1)(d), 20(1)(a), and sections 23(4), of the Failed Banks(Recovery of Debts) and Financial Malpractices in Banks Act (as amended), 2004.

It also contravenes the provisions of Section 516 of the Criminal Code Act, 2004.

If convicted, the bank officials are liable to five years imprisonment, without an option of fine.

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