A Federal High Court sitting in Kaduna has sentenced a banker to thirty-four years imprisonment for granting loans contrary to laid down procedure. The banker, Mr. Ojo Bankole Ezekiel was an Accountant and Operation Officer with Cooperative Savings and Loans Limited, a primary mortgage institution in Abuja .
He was arraigned alongside a former branch manager of the bank, Mr. Adesiyan Adeniyi Adeyinka, now deceased, on a seventeen count charge of granting advances to staff of the bank contrary to laid down procedures. Specifically, the convict and the deceased manager were alleged to have criminally granted a loan of N20million (twenty million naira) to themselves and two other staff of the bank though they only admitted granting a loan of N13millon (thirteen million naira).
The convict pleaded not guilty to the seventeen charges imputed to him and this necessitated his full trial. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, that prosecuted him called three witnesses in the course of the trial and tendered several documents. At the close of the prosecution’s case, the convict’s counsel filed a no-case submission which was overruled by the court. Consequently, the convict was called to proceed with his defence but he opted not to proceed and rested his case with the EFCC.
In his ruling, the presiding judge, Justice M. I. Cuiaba convicted the banker on all seventeen counts and sentenced him to two years on each count, adding up to thirty-four years imprisonment .
The judgment is however, to run concurrently.
Media & Publicity Unit
23rd February, 2012.