Federal high Court Orders Final Forfeiture of $49m Ikoyi Cash to the Federal Government
The $49 million stash found in an apartment in Ikoyi is to be forfeited to the Federal Government, A Federal High Court in Lagos has ordered.
This follows an application by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) that the funds be remitted to the Federal Government after it froze the accounts of the National Intelligence Agency as part of ongoing investigations in April.
In his ruling, Tuesday, Justice M Hassan held that the money was reasonably suspected proceeds of criminal activity consistent with the claims of the anti-graft agency.
He also pointed to the fact that no one showed up in court to claim the controversial Ikoyi cash, giving credence to the claim by the EFCC.
In Its argument, the EFCC was able to show that the wife of the Director General of the NIA, Ayodele Oke, and her children had created dummy companies with the purpose of laundering the money.
There was wide outrage across the country when the cash – comprising $43.5 million, £27,800 and N23.2 million hidden inside Apartment 7B at Osborne Towers, Ikoyi – was uncovered and seized following a bust by the EFCC on April 12.
This sparked a back and forth between the NIA and Transport Minister Rotimi Amaechi, leading to the setting up of a probe panel by Acting President Yemi Osinbajo to unravel the mystery surrounding the alleged loot.
The EFCC has since taken control of the apartment allegedly purchased by Folashade Oke, wife of the suspended NIA DG.
There are yet to be convictions regarding the case.