The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has arrested a former Deputy Governor of Osun State, Senator Iyiola Omisore, who was declared wanted about a month ago.
It was learnt that Omisore was arrested at his Abuja home located at 1 Kainji Crescent, Off Lake Chad Street, Maitama, by a team of EFCC operatives on Sunday morning.
“Upon a thorough search of his apartment, we recovered N1m and $21,000 in cash from him,” a source said.
It was learnt that the suspect was apprehended as part of investigations into the N4.7bn that was siphoned from the imprest account of the Office of the National Security Adviser and allegedly handled by the then Minister of State for Defence, Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, and his two sons, Babajide and Gbolahan, in 2014.
The commission had alleged that Omisore received about N1.31bn from the money during the build-up to the August 9, 2014, governorship election in Osun State in which Omisore was the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party.
Omisore had, however, denied the allegations and even sued the EFCC for N10bn, accusing the anti-graft agency of defamation.
The PUNCH had reported last week that the anti-graft agency traced N1.310bn to company accounts allegedly belonging to Omisore.
Omisore was said to have received the money from the Diamond Bank account of Sylvan McNamara, a company in which Obanikoro’s sons are said to be signatories to its bank account.
The ex-deputy governor allegedly received the funds in four tranches from Sylvan McNamara between July and August 2014, a few weeks before the Osun State governorship election which he lost to incumbent Rauf Aregbesola of the All Progressives Congress.
A document detailing the transaction showed that the money was paid into three company accounts allegedly belonging to Omisore.
A detective in the anti-graft agency explained, “On July 9, 2014, N150m was paid into the bank account of Sawanara at First Bank. On August 1, 2014, N300m was paid into Sawanara Limited.
“On August 8, 2014, about N160m was paid into the bank account of Fimex Gilt Limited domiciled at UBA. On the day of the election, August 9, 2014, N350m was paid into the First Bank account of Metropolitan Consortium.”
The former deputy governor had also sued the EFCC for N10bn and prayed a Federal High Court in Abuja to grant him an order of perpetual injunction restraining the “defendants (EFCC) either by themselves, their agents, officers, servants, privies or otherwise however called from making such or similar defamatory publication of and concerning the plaintiff (Omisore) to any person or persons.”
All the bank accounts traced to Omisore have since been frozen by the EFCC.
Meanwhile, the spokesperson for the PDP in Osun State, Mr. Diran Odeyemi, described the arrest of Omisore by the EFCC as a violation of court order, which restrained the agency from arresting the former deputy governor of the state.
Odeyemi, who is also a close ally of Omisore, said this in an interview with one of our correspondents in Osogbo on Sunday following the arrest.
He said, “It is true that the EFCC invaded Otunba’s house in Abuja today and arrested him. This is a gross violation of the order of the court on this matter.
“There is a subsisting court order, restraining the EFCC from arresting him. They ought to have vacated the order before arresting him.”