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I gave Fayose $5.37m cash for Ekiti state election - Obanikoro

Embattled former Minister of State for Defence, Musiliu Obanikoro, has told EFCC officials that he gave Ekiti state governor, Ayo Fayose, the $5.37 million (N2.23 billion) he collected from former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki.

Obanikoro has been in EFCC custody since on Monday October 17th for his alleged role in the misappropriation of $2.1 billion arms procurement fund.

The Nation reports that the said amount was wired to Sylva Mcnamara, which has been linked to Obanikoro and his sons. Obanikoro during his interrogation, allegedly claimed to have transferred the money to Fayose for disbursement. According to him, he handed Fayose $5,377,000 in cash and N1.3billion was received by the governor’s associate, Abiodun Agbele.

During their interrogation, EFCC officials confronted Obanikoro with a petition from the Office of the National Security Adviser titled “Payment to companies with no contract awards or approval” and dated November 28th 2015.

Obanikoro said having gone through the petition, he discovered that Sylva Mcnamara was No. 78 on the list of firms being investigated, having “collected the aggregate sum of N4,685,000,000 between April 4, 2014 and November 13, 2014.

An EFCC official who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the money when receivced was trasferred immediately to Fayose.

“N2.2billion was transferred to Sylva Mcnamara for onward transfer to Mr. Ayodele Fayose on the instruction of the National Security Adviser (NSA). The sum of N1.3billion cash was brought in a bullion van by Diamond Bank on the instruction of the NSA.

In addition, the sum of N60million was converted to dollars at the rate of N168 per dollar and altogether the sum of $5,377,000 was handed over in cash by me to Mr. Fayose while the N1.3billion was received by Mr. Fayose’s associate, Mr. Abiodun Agbele, in the presence of my Aide-de-Camp (ADC), Lt. Adewale, who also accompanied them to the bank along with the bank officials. I didn’t interact with the bank officials. I called Fayose before the funds were handed over to Mr. Abiodun Agbele. I spoke to Fayose with my phone at Akure airport.”

On how the cash was transferred to Fayose, the source said Obanikoro told investigators that “two flights were used to convey the money from Lagos”.

The ex-minister said he “took off with the first flight with part of the money. The second flight brought the remaining funds to Akure airport and I directed that it should be handed over to the same person,” he was quoted as saying.

The source added that the former Minister maintained that part of the cash was used to ward off Boko Haram aggression in Lagos and in the Southwest.

“He told us that he is not the owner of the company in question but introduced the owner, Mr. Kareem Taiwo, to the NSA, Mr. Sambo Dasuki, when the threat of Boko Haram became more visible in Lagos. He said the government wanted to “incorporate local input into the intelligence gathering and prevention of terrorist attack on Lagos and the Southwest”.

The EFCC had discovered that Sylvan Mcnamara Limited, allegedly owned by Obanikoro and his sons, was used to launder the N4.745billion. The company, which was incorporated in November 2011, has the following as its directors: the ex-Minister’s aide, Ikenna Ezekwe(700,000 shares) of 51 Simpson Street, Ebute-Metta; Idowu Oshodi(299,000 shares) of 8, Prince Tayo Adesanya Street, Park View Estate, Ikoyi; and Elizabeth Adebiyi(1,000 shares) of 3, Adedoyin Street, Ijeshatedo, Surulere.

Ezekwe has had his accounts defrozen by the EFCC since the slush funds were not traced to him.

Part of a document being used in the investigation reads “To set the stage for the use of the company for money laundering, the board of directors on May 7, 2012 passed a resolution that the company should open an account and appointed Mr. Gbolahan Obanikoro, Ikenna Ezekwe, Ms. Theresa Matuluko (Secretary) and Mr. Babajide Obanikoro as the signatories to the account. The board added that the signing combination be that any of the signatories can sign alone.”

According to EFCC, when it was time to draw the N4.745billion from ONSA as a war chest for the Ekiti governorship poll, ex-Minister Obanikoro made the account of Sylvan Mcnamara Limited available and coordinated the disbursement.

The breakdown of the disbursement is as follows:

N N759, 384, 300 changed into dollars through Bureau de change;
N160million used to purchase cars through Balmoral International Limited;
N1, 219, 490,000 ferried by Obanikoro in two flights to Akure and received by Fayose’s associate, Abiodun; and
balance of about N2billion withdrawn by Obanikoro and his two children in cash.

Some of the bureau de change involved in the transactions and the amounts credited to them include A.A.G.B.S Oil and Gas (N168,000,000.00); Sylvan Mcnamara Ltd (N167,500,000.00); Northline Ltd (N835,000.00); Northline Ltd (N83,750,000.00); Five Star Ltd N(37,600,000.00); A.B.A Trading Ent (N268,301,500.00); Villagolf Bureau De Change (N1,425,000.00); Ahmad &Omar (N350,000.000); Northline Ltd (N1,680,000.00); Northline Limited A (N2,325,300); Rehoboth Homes (20,000,0000); Northline Ltd (N5,932,500.00); Northline Ltd (N842,500); Northline Ltd (N842,500.00).

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Donald Trump Agrees to meet Kim Jong Un

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Donald Trump Agrees to meet Kim Jong Un

Donald Trump Agrees to meet Kim Jong Un

The United States President Donald Trump has agreed to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the White House announced, setting the scene for a historic, unprecedented encounter.

The meeting, which would be the first between a sitting US president and a North Korean leader, will happen by May, according to South Korea’s national security adviser, Chung Eui-yong, who delivered the invitation to Trump after a visit by his delegation to Pyongyang earlier this week.
The stunning announcement is the culmination of a diplomatic whirlwind that began with the invitation of a North Korean delegation to the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang. Trump’s decision to meet Kim, after a year in which the two have repeatedly traded insults, is a remarkable breakthrough — albeit one with uncertain consequences.

The South Korean delegation, which landed in Washington, D.C. for a debriefing Thursday on the North-South talks, was careful to praise Trump’s influence over the developments. Chung said the US President’s “leadership” and his administration’s pressure on the North Korean regime had “brought us to this juncture.”

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement that Trump “greatly appreciates the nice words” of the delegation and South Korean President Moon Jae-in.
“He will accept the invitation to meet with Kim Jong Un at a place and time to be determined. We look forward to the denuclearization of North Korea. In the meantime, all sanctions and maximum pressure must remain.”

There are many details to be ironed out before the meeting could take place, including the location. The Panmunjom truce village in the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), one possible venue, hosted meetings between North and South Korea in the run-up to the Winter Olympics.

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Nokia 7 Plus Sold Out In 5 Minutes In China

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Nokia 7 Plus Sold Out In 5 Minutes In China

Nokia 7 Plus Sold Out In 5 Minutes In China

The first batch of Nokia 7 Plus  releases in China has reportedly sold out in 5 minutes. Can I imagine ?

As soon as the virtual shop doors opened at 10:07am, it took only 5 minutes for all available units of the new Nokia phone to be sold out.

The phone sold for CNY 2,300 for the 4GB/64GB version and CNY 2,500 for the 6GB/64GB version (that’s €239 and €318 respectively).

There will be another batch available in about a week – on March 15 at 10:07am. Chances are that the new batch will be gone just as quickly. Of course, neither HMD nor the stores will say how many phones are in a batch.

As for people not in China, we’ll have to wait until April. The Nokia 7 plus is set to cost €400 in Europe (and it doesn’t look like the Old Continent will get the 6GB RAM version).

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King Mohammed VI of Morocco undergoes Successful Heart Surgery in France

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 King Mohammed VI of Morocco undergoes Successful Heart Surgery in France

King Mohammed VI of Morocco undergoes Successful Heart Surgery in France

King Mohammed VI of Morocco yesterday underwent a successful heart surgery in France, state news agency MAP reports.

The 54-year old monarch was treated at a Ambroise Paré Clinic in Paris after he had been diagnosed with an “atrial flutter”. The surgery normalised the heart rhythm, and the king would be able to resume his duties without any restrictions.

The photo of King Mohammed VI on the hospital bed, surrounded by relations has since leaked on the internet. A full statement from MAP read:

“HM the king had on Saturday 20th January 2018 a heart rhythm disorder. The doctors of HM the King said that medical examinations carried out for this purpose revealed an atrial flutter. The ablation by radio frequency of this arrhythmia, performed today at the Ambroise Paré clinic in Paris, allowed the normalization of the heart rhythm. At the end of a rest period as prescribed by his treating physicians, HM the King will resume his normal activities without any restriction.”

King Mohammed VI of Morocco undergoes Successful Heart Surgery in France

Statement by the medical team composed of: Dr Abdelaziz Maouni, Dr Olivier Thomas, Dr Sébastien Bloc, Dr Olivier Dubourg, Dr Ali Chaib, Dr Lahcen Belyamani. The king, who heads the Muslim world’s longest-serving dynasty, took office in 1999 after his father, Hassan II, died of a heart attack.

The political and social stability of Morocco is closely watched by Western governments as it is the only country in North Africa where jihadist groups have failed to gain a foothold, and is an important partner against Islamist militancy in terms of intelligence-sharing.

The kingdom has escaped mass uprisings such as in Egypt, Libya or other Arab countries, but protests have erupted since 2016 in some rural areas against poverty and unemployment. Morocco has averted previous protests with a combination of limited constitutional reforms, heavy policing and hefty public spending.

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