Johnson Abidakun, an official of Zenith Bank of Nigeria, has explained how N200 million naira was moved from the residence of Ayodele Fayose, former governor of Ekiti state, to the bank for deposit.
Abidakun testified at a resumed hearing of the N2.2bn fraud trial of Fayose before C.J Aneke at a federal high court in Lagos.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is prosecuting Fayose for allegedly taking N2.2bn from the office of Sambo Dasuki, ex-national security adviser (NSA), for his governorship election in 2014.
Led in evidence by Adebisi Adeniyi, a member of the prosecuting team for the EFCC, Abidakun said the money was moved in April 2016 while he was the head of operations at the Ado-Ekiti branch of the bank.
He said his duty was to oversee three units; funds transfer; cash and teller; and customer service.
He noted that he got a call on the said day from Abiodun Oshode, his zonal head, who told him of the need to move N200m cash from Fayose’s residence down to the bank.
“I received a call from my zonal head, Dr Abiodun Oshode, that there was an assignment to be carried out; that there was a sum of N200m to be moved from the residence of the then governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose; that we had to go and move the cash urgently and I immediately called upon the cash officer to arrange for policemen,” Abidakun said.
“The policemen arrived after 30 minutes. We arranged for their payment and called it police money. We also arranged for the cash driver and the cash movers.
“So, they set out for the assignment. After about one hour, they came back with the money and the money was counted and ascertained to be N199.5m as against N200m. While detailed counting of the money was going on, Mr Abiodun Agbele came in with one other man, Mr Taofeek.
“I know Mr Abiodun Agbele to be close to the governor but I don’t know his position; he gave instructions that the money should be credited into the account of Still Earth Nigeria Limited and that the depositor was Mr Taofeek.
“At the point of posting, I discovered that the deposit slip was filled by my subordinate, Oputu Okeimute. I asked him why he filled the deposit slip and he said the depositor could not read or write. After that, the money was credited into the account of Still Earth.”
During the cross-examination by Ola Olanipekun, Fayose’s lawyer, Abidakun said he did not go to Fayose’s house but delegated Adewale Aladegbola, a former witness who is a bullion van driver with the bank, to lead the team.
“Aladegbola was the only one that knew the destination. I didn’t tell him the amount of money but he led the team. When they came back, they didn’t tell me that they met the first defendant.”
The case was adjourned till Friday for further proceedings.