- Top Rivers government officials take cover
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arrested the General Managing Director of Zenith Bank Peter Amangbo.
His arrest is linked to series of transactions his bank carried out on behalf one of Nigeria’s oil-producing state, Rivers.
Mr. Peter Amangbo, according to report, was arrested on Sunday over alleged N117 billion in value, which his bank failed to report as demanded by law.
Report said he will be interrogated why his bank failed to document the withdrawals, allegedly done over a three-year period.
It’d be recalled that Mr. Amangbo was first invited for questioning on August 23, but was freed on administrative bail and asked to return on August 24 for further interrogation.
He honoured the arrangement, turning himself in again at the EFCC headquarters in Abuja.
It’s also learned that at least four other officials are being sought in the investigation, Premium Times report says.
Some top government officials have reportedly taken cover, one of them is Fubara Similari, whom investigators identified as the director of finance and account at the Government House in Port Harcourt.
At the time of filing this report, no further details were given, and EFCC was yet to make an official statement about the arrest, neither Zenith Bank public relations unit.
Peter Amangbo’s rest a political witch-hunt, Rivers governor saysinin
Meanwhile, Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike has berated the anti-corruption agency over the arrest of Peter Amangbo.
It is a “political witch-hunt” Nyesom, a PDP governor and major critic of the Federal APC-led government said.
“No government official will appear before the EFCC,” Mr Wike was quoted as saying in a statement his spokesperson Simeon Nwakaudu sent to PREMIUM TIMES Sunday night.
The governor said an Appeal Court judgement in 2007 prohibited the EFCC from prying into Rivers State coffers, a ruling he claimed had not been appealed.
“They filed for leave to appeal the judgment at the Court of Appeal. Until they set aside the judgment, we will not come,” Mr Wike said, adding that a fresh lawsuit would be filed to stop the EFCC investigation of Rivers accounts.
The investigation comes two weeks after the EFCC froze bank accounts owned by Benue and Akwa Ibom States.
Mr Wike argued Sunday that the EFCC went after Benue and Akwa Ibom to lay the groundwork for similar measures against Rivers.
“But the target is not Benue or Akwa Ibom States,” Mr Wike said. “The real target is Rivers State.”
“The EFCC as a federal agency has no business with state funds. That is the responsibility of the State House of Assembly,” he added.