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Lawyers Write Anti-graft Agency, ICPC To Probe NEXIM Bank Director, Okotete Over Alleged Corruption, Drag Buhari Government To Court

December 8, 2022

It was gathered that the All Progressives Congress chieftain did not have the 18 years of post-graduation experience required to occupy such high office as specified by the Central Bank of Nigeria circular of 15th October 2015.

A group of legal practitioners, Lawyers For Reform Group, has petitioned the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) to probe Stella Okotete, Executive Director (Business Development) at the Nigeria Export-Import (NEXIM) Bank over alleged fraud.

SaharaReporters had reported how Okotete was appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari despite issues regarding her qualification.

It was gathered that the All Progressives Congress chieftain did not have the 18 years of post-graduation experience required to occupy such high office as specified by the Central Bank of Nigeria circular of 15th October 2015.

It was also revealed that Okotete did not have any experience in the banking industry as required by the law.

In a petition to ICPC, Lawyers for Reform Group called on the commission to diligently investigate Okotete.

The statement read, “Lawyers for Reform Group (LRG) being a group of legal practitioners with commitments in human rights and public interest matters of urgent national importance, most importantly in view of our untainted integrity, unprecedented posture and fight against corruption in Nigeria, while ensuring due diligence, constructive engagement and building an enabling environment for the positive reformation of our laws.

“Having patiently waited after our 7 days ultimatum petition submitted to the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha to swiftly act on our petition which we equally submitted same to President Muhammadu Buhari, 9th National Assembly Senate President, Senator Ahmad Lawan, EU, UK, US Embassies, IGP, NBA President, regrettably we are completely embarrassed and cautiously displeased with the profuse lack of remorse by the principal culprit, alongside penchants of lies raised by the management of NEXIM Bank in a widely circulated publication, while also using some irresponsible proxies and sponsored pseudo groups to launch spiral mudslides led by one Barr. Fashe Olakunle of Dinju, Fashe & Co.

“We have therefore reiterated through Mr Myson Nejo, Esq filed a law suit against President Muhammadu Buhari led Federal Government in a suit filed before the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court, marked FHC/ABJ/CS/2233 between, Incorporated Trustees of Ilaje Global Think Thank Initiative and Stella Okotete as First Defendant, President Muhammadu Buhari as Second Defendant and Attorney General of the Federation, Mal. Abubakar Malami SAN as Third Defendant, our mandate is to test the legal waters beyond protestation, the case before the court is pursuant to Section 6.1.1 of the CBN circular on revised and assessment criteria for approved persons regime for financing institutions 2015.

“We prayed the court to ask President Buhari if the appointment of Stella Okotete as the Executive Director of the NEXIM bank was in line with the CBN Act, stressing the need for the court to declare the appointment as null, avoid, illegal and unconstitutional.

“Sir, we urgently reiterate our stance for a proper investigation of STELLA OKOTETE by the Independent and Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) over the unimplemented Senate Report based on the resolved Petition  submitted by Myson Law Practice led by Mr Myson Nejo, Esq. on behalf of the Ilaje Global Think Thank Initiative, aftermath of rain which due diligence and fair hearing was granted to both parties and eventually resolved AGAINST Stella Erhuvwuoghene Okotete recommending her immediate REMOVAL as Executive Director of the NEXIM BANK, and in compliance with the Order 41(3) of the Senate Rule; which culminated into a well investigated statutory report for onward implementation by President Muhammadu Buhari-  dated since April, 2019 via the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petition's Resolution signed by the Committee’s Chairman, Senator Samuel N. Anyawu, with Freedom Osolo as  Clerk of the Committee alongside twelve other distinguished other Senators  recommending Stella Erhuvwuoghene Okotete's immediate removal as the Executive Director of the Nigerian Export-Import Bank (NEXIM BANK), while using this medium to draw the general public's attention to the  massive corruption allegations: spiral approval of huge loans to unqualified and unverified companies, fraudulent round-tripping and  recycling of different unpaid loans, and use of various  front-companies as proxy to defraud NEXIM BANK of Billions of Naira and Dollars to mention a few, consequently we demand for the immediate replacement of STELLA OKOTETE as  EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF NEXIM BANK.

“In compliance with the Central Bank of Nigeria Act Regulations and Order 41(3) of the Senate Rule consequently we reaffirm our fundamental demands by the reason of her lack of capacity not to have met the CBN's  Statutory requirements and served in the banking service for 18 years and must have risen to the level of a  General Manager for at least two years, hence she is not fit and merit to continue to hold the Executive Director of the NEXIM BANK, we therefore call on President Muhammadu Buhari to act decisively accordingly.

“We wish to inform the management of NEXIM Bank and specifically advise Mr Fashe Olakunle to desist from dishonest and dishonorable acts much better defined as a freelancer-lawyer window shopping for notorious criminal cases like Oketete and her likes, while aiding and abetting crime and illegality.

“This is in absolute violation of the laws of the Federation, and the Legal Practitioners Act, capable of prosecution at a court of competent jurisdiction. It is expected of legal practitioners to be circumspect of the law, as well as guide citizens such as Stella Okotete to resign honorably with open sober apology for fraudulently misleading the entire Nigerians and false misrepresentation of her real academic status.

“Take Notice: we shall join Mr Fashe Olakunle and his likes as co-defendants alongside Stella Okotete's ongoing investigation cases  before IGP, ICPC, EFCC for intentionally aiding and abetting illegality, and as well petition him to the Legal Practitioners Desciplinary Committee(LPDC) for shielding and promoting criminality as accessories with common intentions to deliberately commit further crimes.

“It is extremely ridiculous to read NEXIM Bank statement and Mr Olakunle's submissions with total disappoinment that Stella Okotete's CBN's regulations and Senate resolution is a political witch-hunt and sponsored, when it is on record that the suspect herself is aware of the crime committed and she refused to resign honourably.

“Also, it is important to correct Mr Olakunle's vexatious impression that anyone can be appointed on prerogative of the President; meaning Mr President can jokingly appoint a carpenter to be a Chief Judge of the Federation, however not in such circumstances of making a hairdresser spa Operator the Executive Director of NEXIM BANK, when she has no prerequisite knowledge of financial accounting and 18 years cumulative cum 13 years cognate banking experience and must have attained the position and spent 2 years as the General Manager of any financial institution.”