The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has declared a former Director General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Amb. Ayodele Oke and his wife, Folasade, wanted in connection with alleged N13 billion fraud.
The cash had to do with $43,449,947, £27,800 and N23,218,000 recovered by the anti-graft agency from an apartment on Osborne Road, Ikoyi, Lagos, in April 2017.
But a family source said Oke, who has been away for medical trip abroad, had not been served the charges against him.
He said Oke is not on the run but attending to his fragile health.
A statement by the Acting Head of Media and Publicity of the commission, Mr. Tony Orilade, said the couple were declared wanted after they failed to answer fraud charges filed against them.
The statement reads: “Justice Chukwujeku Aneke of a Federal High Court Lagos, had on February 7, 2019 issued an arrest warrant on them, consequent upon an oral application by counsel for the EFCC, Rotimi Oyedepo.
“Oke and his wife are wanted in connection with the $43,449,947, £27,800 and N23,218,000 cash recovered by the EFCC from an apartment at Osborne Road, Ikoyi, Lagos, in April 2017.
“They are facing a four-count charge bordering on money laundering offence to the tune of N13 billion.”
One of the counts reads: “That you, Amb. Ayodele Oke and Mrs. Folasade Ayodele Oke between 25th day of August 2015 and 2nd day of September 2015 in Lagos, with in the jurisdiction of this court directly converted $160,777,136.85 property of the Federal Government of Nigeria to your own use which sum you reasonably ought to have known formed part of proceeds of an unlawful act to wit: criminal breach of trust and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15 (2) (d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act 2012 and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same Act”.
A top source, who spoke in confidence with our correspondent, said: “Twice, we have been to court but he refused to appear to answer the charges against him. We trailed him to NIA quarters but we avoided barging into the premises.
“But later, the trail signal disappeared which indicated that he had gone underground.
“We explained our dilemma to the court and it gave us the go-ahead to look for him.”
Responding to a question, the source added: “What we have done now is to watch-list him. Wherever he is, whoever sees him at airport, seaport and land borders, should report to any security agency. “ At this stage, what we need to do is to serve him charges.”
A family source, however, said: “As at today, Oke and his wife have not been served any charges. They only arraigned him after he has gone abroad for treatment. Before he left the country, there was no communication from the anti-graft agency.
“How can the EFCC declare the ex-NIA boss wanted after he had appeared before them for questioning? Once he is through with his medical care, Oke and his wife will report to the EFCC accordingly.”