By Chibiko Ikenna Offor
The Economic and Financial Crime Commission EFCC did not know that the luxury apartment located in the Osborne Tower belonged to Rotimi Amaechi until after the raid and making the news public. What it did next was a shocking stunt by a body like EFCC that portray itself as an anti-corruption agency.
The Economic and Financial Crime Commission, EFCC, discovered a shocking sum of cash money in a luxury residential complex in Ikoyi, Lagos.
Facts have emerged to ascertain the true owner of the said luxury apartment in Ikoyi, Lagos. The Osborne Towers, a luxury residential complex in Ikoyi, Lagos where EFCC said it found $43,449,947, £27,800 and N23, 218,000 on Wednesday is owned by the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi.
The EFCC was completely unaware of the owner of the targeted address for their intrusive search, so did not do much research to ascertain that it belonged to Hon. Rotimi Amaechi.
Though with resources at their disposal, they were unable proper investigation before the successful search, that will now open can of worms for the federal government.
The house was built by Alhaji Adamu Muazu, the former Chairman of PDP
through a loan from GTBank. Alhaji Muazu was unable to service the said loan so, GT bank repossessed the entire building but gave him the pent house and two flats.
Rotimi Amaechi bought TWO of the flats (7A and 7B). He reportedly gave 7A to Mo Abudu, the TV presenter, who is suspected to be his girlfriend.
The said massive stash of mostly dollar currency was found in flat 7B belongs to Rotimi Amaechi.
A very reliable source categorically told The Republican News that the money belongs to Rotimi Amaechi. So, when EFCC found out that they have created a new problem which could create unforeseen circumstances for both EFCC, FG and especially for president Muhammadu Buhari, it had to find ways to correct the blunder. The EFCC contacted the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) to do covert operation for them and rescue them from the mess. National Intelligence Agency did confirm that it has been on several contacts with EFCC over the discovered massive stash of cash.
Last night, National Intelligence Agency (NIA) came out to make suspicious claim that money belongs to it. But the claim raises few questions, which need answers. Some of the question are, how could such safe house owned by NIA not earmarked for FG authorities to be aware of its existence?
Another question, which raises suspicion about the quality of service delivery by EFCC is how could they also not know the actual owner of the house and contact such person before heading for a search? It appears all EFCC needs to know is an information from a whistleblower and their officers march to the target and search everywhere.
Further, who is the whistleblower that had access to this flat and had information about such mass stash of cash in the apartment? If this appartment is a safe house to NIA and it is a top-secret, who was the whistleblower who is aware of its existence and what is in it?
EFCC should have solved this problem if they had tried to ascertain the owner of the apartment before heading to the said address to search. But now that the cat has been let out of the bag, they scrambled for ways to cover it up. It remains to be seen how far this coverup is going to go before more facts make it to the public domain.
Meanwhile the Federal High Court in Lagos has ordered the temporary forfeiture of the sums of $43,449,947, £27,800 and N23,218,000 recovered by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission from an apartment in the Ikoyi area of Lagos on Wednesday.
The court, in a ruling on Thursday afternoon by Justice Muslim Hassan, ordered that the funds be temporarily forfeited to the Federal Government.
The judge adjourned till May 5, 2017, for owner of the funds to show up before him to show cause why the money should not be permanently forfeited to the Federal Government.
So, it is now clear that the National Intelligence Agency will be used to retrieve the money and hand it over to Rotimi Amaechi. This is going to cause a serious embarrassment for the Federal Government and for president Muhammadu Buhari.
Another sources from EFCC have revealed to the former minister of Aviation, Mr Femi Fani-Kayode, that the said recovered money and flat belong to the Minister Of Transport, Hon. Rotimi Amaechi.
So, this could be a messy stunts for the FG, Amaechi and National Intelligence Agency and Muhammadu Buhari.
Nigerians are going to watch keenly to see how this ends