Magu probe: FCMB CEO admits N573 million wrongly posted to prophet Omale’s account

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The Ayo Salami-led panel probing allegations of corruption against suspended EFCC chairman, Ibrahim Magu, was stunned during the investigation when the MD/CEO of FCMB, Adam Nuru, told the panel that there was an error over the reported posting of N573 million into the church account of Emmanuel Omale, founder of the Divine Hand of God Prophetic Ministries, Account No 1486743019.

The bank CEO was invited by the panel following the alleged report that the cleric laundered money for Magu and used the proceeds of the said N573 million to purchase property for the suspended EFCC chairman in Dubai.

Nuru, while giving evidence on the funds traced to the account, narrated that on January 16, 2016, the bank made a return to NFIU which indicated that there was a transaction of an inflow of well over N573 million.

 “This return was said to be in favour of Divine Hand of God Prophetic Ministries Account No 1486743019,” Nuru said.

“After that report, we conducted an investigation and discovered that the lodgement which we reported to NFIU was an error.

“The error was as a result of the fact that we were using a bank application called Pinnacle-7. However, we migrated from that application to a newer version called Pinnacle-10.

“Usually, when the bank intends to migrate from one application to another, we utilise weekends to carry out the exercise. The migration involves moving all the balances of customers from the previous application to the new application. The account of the Divine Hand Ministries was moved during that migration.

“In that branch, we have 983 accounts (Banex). The credit balance in all the 983 accounts domiciled came to the aforesaid amount. It was that balance of N573 million that was wrongly posted as an inflow into Divine Hand Ministries as reported to NFIU,” he said.

Nuru said the error was not peculiar to Divine Hand of God Prophetic Ministries alone but was also ascribed to 27 other accounts.

When asked why it took the bank about four years to discover the error, the CEO responded that the bank just realised the blunder upon invitation by the panel.

The Presidential Committee on Audit of Recovered Assets (PCARA), in its report, had disclosed that one Prophet Emmanuel Omale, a pastor at Divine Hand of God Prophetic Ministry, was said to have been used by Magu to launder funds.

Omale’s name was reportedly uncovered during an investigation on EFCC’s activities by the Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU).

It should be recalled that Prophet Emmanuel Omale, in his prophecies for 2020, said that President Muhammadu Buhari will reappoint, Ibrahim Magu as EFCC Chairman in spite of massive gang up. He also said that the war on corruption will jail two ex-governors who are currently serving as Senators.

Prophet Omale’s name was reportedly uncovered during an investigation on EFCC’s activities by the Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU).

According to the report, the cleric bought a landed property worth N573 million in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on behalf of Magu.

“Another individual who is helping in laundering funds for the Acting Chairman and who has been referred to in several petitions is one Pastor Emmanuel Omale (Hand of God Prophetic Ministry).

“As an unknown pastor, the NFIU’s report showed the huge movement of funds ranging from N573,228,040.41.

“He is reported to have travelled to Dubai with Magu and his name was used in purchasing a property in Dubai for Magu,” the report read.

President Buhari had in July ordered a Judicial Commission of Enquiry under the Tribunals of Inquiry Act (Cap T21, LFN, 2004) to investigate the alleged financial impropriety and mismanagement of recovered assets levelled against the suspended acting chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu.

Recall that Magu was accosted on July 6, 2020, in front of the Wuse office of the EFCC and directed to appear before the Salami-led panel.

The Justice Salami committee had summoned several witnesses to testify at the probe.

BusinessDay gathered that Magu was served with the allegations and terms of reference on Saturday, August 8, 2020.

Multiple sources close to the Presidency also disclosed that the panel was given 45 days to submit its report.

The panel, headed by Ayo Salami, also has Anthony Michael, a retired deputy inspector general of police as deputy chairman, Muhammad Babadoko, Hassan Abdullahi, Muhammad Shamsuddeen, and  Douglas Egweme as members, and Kazeem Attitebi as secretary.

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