N179 Million Fraud: Former Ecobank Manager, Husband Arraigned For Theft

A Lagos High Court sitting in Igbosere, Lagos Island, has fixed May 21 for ruling in the bail application filed by a former Ecobank Plc Customer Service Manager, Mrs Tosin Lawal and her husband, Michael, accused of defrauding the bank of the sum of N179.8million.

The defendants were today arraigned on an eleven-count charge bordering on conspiracy and theft before the court presided over by Justice Christopher Balogun.

They both pleaded not guilty.

The duo were accused by the State of having conspired to defraud Ecobank Nigeria Plc of the sum through fraudulent sales of foreign currency.

According to the charges, the offence contravenes Sections 390 and 516 of the Criminal Code, Laws of Lagos State, 2003.

It would be recalled that the couple were arraigned in January 24, 2012  before Justice Samuel Candide-Johnson of the same court, who granted the second defendant bail in the sum of N5million before the case was transferred to the present Judge.

When the matter came up for hearing on Thursday, the prosecuting lawyer, Ola Owodunni informed the judge that the bail application of the second defendant will be left unopposed but urged the court not to grant the first defendant bail.

According to the lawyer, “A counter affidavit has been filed in response to the bail application for the first defendant which explains that the couple are a flight risk and should not be granted bail.

“Another fact I want the court to take into consideration is that they were arrested at the Muritala Muhammed International Airport at 9.00 p.m while trying to escape from the country.”

The prosecuting further submitted that the second defendant already enjoys the discretion of the court having already been granted bail at the first arraignment by Justice Candide-Johnson

He stressed that extending the same privilege to the first defendant bail might lead to their absence for trial.

However, the defence lawyer Mr Oyedipo has assured the court that the defendants would not abscond over a mere case of stealing if granted bail.

“The police had initially granted the defendants bail four months before their arraignment and they did not jump bail so i see no reason why they should be considered a flight risk now.

“It is not peculiar for any applicant to consider running away if granted bail but what the court does is to impose terms to ensure that applicants turn up for trial,” Oyedipo added.

He also submitted that the premises and conclusions of the counter affidavit opposing the bail application is faulty and urged the court to exercise its discretion in favour of the first defendant.

AYC 2013 Qualifiers: Flying Eagles jet out to Tanzania

The delegation of Flying Eagles flew out of the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Ikeja aboard a RwandAir airline flight and the delegation was led by Chris Green who is the Chairman of the NFF Technical Sub-Committee and this was deemed necessary in order to keep the players and the crews of the National Team in check in terms of discipline and keep performance of their duties at the optimum.

Meanwhile, the itinerary of the squad was made known as they leave Nigeria to touch down at Tanzania and by tomorrow (Tuesday July 24, 2012) the Flying Eagles shall lock horns with the Young Amavubi of Rwanda in Kigali in an international friendly before heading to the game proper in Dar Es Salam on Thursday for Sunday’s 2013 African Youth Championship qualifier against the Junior Taifa Stars.

The NFF is determined to inculcate into the teams the important virtues of the development and re-building processes, which is why the ejection of Assistant Coach Abimbola Samuel and Goalkeeper Trainer Suleiman Shuaibu from the squad was something the local football body had to do as they were seen as a cog in the wheel of progress.

18 players were handpicked by the head Coach John Sam Obuh plus his assistants and backroom staff and he also included new Goalkeeper Trainer Aloysius Agu.

Agu, a former Captain of the Super Eagles, replaces Suleiman Shuaibu.

The U-20 Women’s Team, Falconets departed from the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja today for Accra, Ghana where the team will play two friendly matches on Tuesday and Thursday this week, against the U-20 Women’s Team of that country, known as Black Princesses. The team traveled aboard an Arik Air flight.

Airport workers protest against Maevis

 The National Union of Air Transport Employees of the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) on Tuesday staged a peaceful protest at the Muritala Muhammed international airport in Lagos to support the decision of the airport authority to terminate the concession contract with Maevis Nigeria Limited.

The deputy national president of the National Union of Air Transport Employees, Mr Aturu Samuelson said “due process should be followed in the award of contract not only in the aviation industry but in other sector.”

Maevis was engaged by FAAN as a concessionaire for the provision of the Airport Operations Management System (AOMS) platform in the nation’s four international airports in Lagos, Abuja, Kano and Port-Harcourt.

The concession was recently terminated by the Managing Director of FAAN, George Uriesi, who announced the revocation of the concession made to Maevis.

The FAAN/ Maevis AOMS project comprised the acquisition, installation, operation and management of world class Integrated Airport Operations Database (AODB), Common Use Terminal Equipment (CUTE), Computer Based Departure Control System Platform, Common Use Self Service (CUSS) Kiosk, Check-in desk and a fully automated Airport Pricing and Billing System (PBS).