The Investigative Committee (IC) set up by President Bola Tinubu to probe the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has uncovered how the former CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele, stole N3 trillion from two projects alone. The projects are the COVID loans and the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme Fund.
According to top sources privy to the findings of the committee, the massive amount was siphoned by Emefiele and his cronies from the two projects, among other atrocities committed as the head of the apex bank.
The committee, headed by the Chief Executive Officer of the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria, Jim Obazee, was appointed by President Tinubu in July to investigate CBN and key Government Business Entities. The committee only reports to the President.
The appointment of Obazee came over a month after Tinubu suspended Emefiele as the CBN governor and ordered his arrest and detention by Nigeria’s secret police, the Department of State Services (DSS).
Sources told SaharaReporters that Obazee’s investigative committee was pushing to have an interim report submitted to President Tinubu soon so that he would understand how grave and massive corruption at the CBN under Emefiele had set Nigeria’s finances back.
“The committee is asking that they should be allowed to submit an interim report so as to stop any attempt by Emefiele and the Attorney General of the Federation’s office to settle his case on the basis of N50 billion refund plea bargain as earlier exposed by SaharaReporters,” one of the sources said.
In his nationwide broadcast on Sunday morning as part of the programme of events to mark Nigeria’s 63rd Independence anniversary celebration, President Tinubu confirmed that findings on past lapses in the apex bank would soon be out.
In his address, Tinubu said, “I pledged a thorough housecleaning of the den of malfeasance the CBN had become. That housecleaning is well underway.”
“A new leadership for the Central Bank has been constituted. Also, my special investigator will soon present his findings on past lapses and how to prevent similar reoccurrences,” he added.
On Friday, SaharaReporters exclusively reported that Emefiele was set to be released from detention by the DSS after his plea bargain with President Tinubu’s administration had been concluded.
However, the AGF and Minister of Justice, Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, on Sunday denied reaching any non-prosecution bargain with Emefiele.
Emefile and some of his associates were expected to be arraigned over N6.9 billion procurement fraud at the Federal Capital Territory High Court in August but the arraignment had stalled.
Newsflash Nigeria had gathered that the non-prosecution plea bargain for Emefiele was being premised upon the former governor’s willingness to return N50 billion which he had corruptly amassed.
Newsflash Nigeria in August reported that Emefiele faced 20 counts of conspiracy and procurement fraud levelled against him by the Nigerian government.
The Nigerian government through the DSS earlier filed two counts bordering on illegal possession of firearms and ammunition against Emefiele.