In a recent development, the Ibadan Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) brought Obakin Ajibola before Justice Ladiran Akintola of the Oyo State High Court. Ajibola, a former director of Lee Fakino Nigeria Limited, stands accused of misappropriating a staggering N251,685,000 from the firm. This incident, said to have occurred in December 2022, has raised questions about corporate governance and financial transparency. Let’s delve into the details of this intriguing legal battle.
According to a statement from the EFCC’s Head of Media and Publicity, Wilson Uwujaren, Ajibola, who held a directorial position and was a signatory to the company’s account, is alleged to have withdrawn the funds without proper authorization. This act was reportedly carried out without the knowledge or consent of the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Akindele Fajemiyo, who was also a signatory to the account.
A Devious Move:
To further complicate matters, it is claimed that Ajibola removed Fajemiyo’s contact information from the company’s bank records. This maneuver ensured that transaction notifications were sent solely to Ajibola, allowing him to closely monitor the account without arousing suspicion.
The Missing Funds:
The statement reveals that the embezzled sum was payment for services rendered by Lee Fakino Nigeria Limited to the Lagos State Ministry of Agriculture between December 22, 2022, and March 9, 2023. Shockingly, Fajemiyo received no notifications about these transactions.
The Legal Proceedings:
When presented with the charges, Ajibola entered a plea of “not guilty.” The prosecution counsel, Oyelakin Oyediran, subsequently requested a trial date and asked the court to detain the defendant pending the case’s resolution. In response, the defense counsel, Ibrahim Lawal, sought bail for his client.
Justice Ladiran Akintola granted Ajibola bail in the sum of N50 million and required two sureties, preferably his wife and younger brother, to also provide N50 million each. The sureties were mandated to submit affidavits of means and deposit their National Identification Slips with the court. Additionally, they were required to furnish the court with their residential addresses.
The court ordered Ajibola to provide his National Identification Slip and residential address. The case was adjourned until October 23, 2023, for the next phase of proceedings.
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