The controversy surrounding the trial of former Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Pension Affairs, Dr. Abdulrasheed Maina, took an ugly turn on Wednesday when a banker with Fidelity Bank confessed to operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission that she ran five accounts that were used to launder funds to the tune of N2 billion.
The five accounts were used to channel funds through some bureaux de change to an account in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, EFCC investigations revealed.
The bureaux de change were found to be JIEK BDC, West Waves and Alnasara.
Toyin Mesheke, an account officer with the bank, also said that Maina operated a safe deposit box with the bank, a box that had been in existence before she secured employment with the bank.
The five accounts were Cluster Logistics, Nafisatu Aliyu, Abdullahi Faizal, Kangolo and Drew Investment.
Mesheke said she managed the first three three accounts on behalf of Maina after his brother left the bank.
She said: “I managed Nafisatu Aliyu, Cluster Logistics and Abdullahi Faizal for Abdulrasheed Maina as soon as his brother, Khalid Aliyu, left the bank three years ago.
“Though all the three accounts do not carry Abdulrasheed Maina’s name but I carried out instruction on the accounts for him as explained to me by his brother that Abdulrasheed Maina owns all funds in the accounts before he resigned from the bank.
“He is not a signatory to the three accounts mentioned. He usually called me on my phone number -08057465698 – to carry out instruction on all the three accounts.
“And he also sent e-mail instructions through his email [email protected] to my personal email [email protected] to carry out instructions. Thereafter, he would send someone to the bank to give me a form of regularisation on the transactions done on all the three accounts.
“Sometimes when it is getting too late to regularize, I would call to remind him and asked me to come to his house in Kado to receive the regularised cheques.
“Most time, precisely on two occasions, I received the already signed regularised cheques in an enveloped sealed at the gate of his house.
“On 3/10/14, Abdulrasheed sent an instruction to debit Cluster Logistics with the sum of N15, 870, 690 and credit to a Bureau De Change account (JIEK BDC). This amount was converted to US dollars for onward delivery to him. I don’t know, I cannot remember the USD equivalent.
“Also on May 2, 2014, Abdulrasheed Maina sent a mail carrying instruction that the sum of N33, 880,000 be debited from the same Cluster Logistics and transferred to a Bureau De Change (West Waves). This was converted by the BDC customer and delivered to him.
“He scanned and sent another instruction on May 6, 2014 to me to debit Cluster Logistics with N47, 500, 00 and credit to BDC Customer, West Waves BDC who converted and sent to him.
“On the transaction that took place on July 3, 2015 in Abdullahi Faizal, he (Abdulrasheed Maina) sent an e-mail that the account be liquidated and converted to US dollars (USD). So, I got a bureau de change customer to convert the sum of N108million for him.”
In a related development, counsel to Maina, Mrs Esther Uzoma, has faulted the action of the EFCC in declaring her client wanted without filing amendment charges before a competent court.