A banker with the Zenith Bank Akure Branch in Ondo state, Sunday Alade, on Monday told the court how cash was delivered to the Ekiti state Governor, Ayodele Fayose’s aides, by former Minister of State for defence, Musiliu Obanikoro and how they took turns to count the cash which amounted to N1.22billion.
The banker disclosed this to a Federal High Court in Abuja, in the ongoing trial of Fayose’s aide, Mr Abiodun Agbele, on money laundering charges in connection with the Dasuki arms fund.
According to Sunday, the money was counted by him and his colleagues, and it was in the denominations of N1000 and N500 bills with a total amount of N1,219,490,000.
The banker said, under cross examination, by the defense counsel, Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN), that his team evacuated the money and it was allegedly airlifted to Akure airport twice by the Minister, Obanikoro, after which they began counting between 8am to 3pm daily for ten days.
The witness said, “It took us 10 whole days to count the money after we brought it from the Akure Airport. It took us from 8am to 3pm daily to count the money. Some time, the officials counting it would take time off.”
Fayose’s aide, Agbele is being prosecuted along with three companies – Sylvan Mcnamara Ltd., De Privateer and Spotless – on 11 counts of money laundering involving about N4,685,723,000,000 allegedly taken by former National Security Adviser from the account of the Office of the NSA domiciled in the Central Bank of Nigeria.
The prosecution alledged that Agbele, Obanikoro and other suspects (said to be at large) knew that the money formed part of the proceeds of alleged unlawful activities of Dasuki.
They argued that the sum of N1,219,000,000 from a total of N4,685,723,000,000 was taken by them on June 17, 2014.
Earlier on Monday, Ozekhome withdrew his appearance for the second defendant, Sylvan Mcnamara Ltd. (a firm believed to be owned by Obanikoro).
Sunday also told the court that the balance of N230million, was taken by Agbele, after he had given directives on how the money was to be disbursed.
The witness, also in his evidence-in-chief, identified documents, account opening packages for the account of false and investment and deprivateer and statements of transactions in the accounts.