In recent times, the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa has been in the eye of the storm over ownership of multiple bank accounts through his BVN. Unraveling this mystery might lead to Nigeria’s biggest political fraud saga, writes Kazeem Ade. Excerpts
When news blogs became awash with reports linking the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa with about 64 bank accounts linked to a particular Bank Verification Number (BVN) 2296663231, many thought anti-graft agencies would have picked up the whistle blowing act of the report and dig deep to unravel its veracity.
According to reports, the various bank accounts were registered with various names, and are being used to siphon public funds in Lagos. The BVN: 2296663231, reveals that Obasa operates accounts with multiple names in Polaris Bank, Zenith Bank, Access Bank, Ecobank Nigeria, Stanbic IBTC Bank, Guaranty Trust Bank, United Bank for Africa, First City Monument Bank and Wema Bank. However, to conceal his identity, the Speaker changed his name and date of birth in some of the accounts.
Aside from using Ajayi Mudashiru Obasa, he also used Obasa Abdulrahman Gbadunola and Gabriel Adedoyin Savage to register some of the bank accounts.
Some of the companies linked to the BVN include Adesav International Ventures, Fabric Splash Ventures, Swifthill international Ventures, Quick Solution International, Quick solution International Ventures, White Honey Enterprises, Cream on Ice Services, A.B DELCO Nigeria Company, and Fabric Splash Ventures, Skye-Macosh Company, Swifthill International Ventures, Silver Section Global, Davedab Global Ventures and Jose-Macosh Company and De Kingrun.
However, despite the reports trending on social media and even unsettling the three time Lagos Lawmaker into publicly denying the allegation, Lagosians remain perplexed that anti-graft agencies like the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) or the Independent Corrupt Practises Commission (ICPC) have kept sealed lips over the matter, and it seems the issue is being swept under the carpet.
In an exclusive chat with Global Village Extra, Spokesman of the EFCC, Dele Oyewale said he has not been briefed on the Mudashiru Obasa matter. He however promised to get back to Global Village Extra as soon as he gets any information with regards to the allegations.
For many in Lagos, the response of the EFCC remains unsatisfactory, given past reactions to allegations as grave as this. Speaking to Global Village Extra, a medical doctor, Afeez Salami wondered what else the anti-graft agencies need to pick up the trail of such report and expose the truth or falsehood in it. According to Doctor Salami, “I read the report linking the Lagos State Speaker with 64 bank accounts, and it’s surprising that the anti-graft agencies have kept sealed lips over such grave findings.
“The report indicated a particular BVN which was stated publicly, and attached to that BVN were multiple bank accounts with different names, what else does the EFCC or ICPC need? With the powers setting up these anti-graft agencies, they can write the banks to demand the list of accounts attached to this particular BVN without even informing the owner of the bank account.
“But since the report came out, we have heard nothing from both the EFCC and the ICPC, fuelling speculation that these anti-graft agencies are errand boys who only go after political enemies of the ruling party, All Progressive Congress (APC).”
Also speaking with Global Village Extra, a banker with one of Nigeria’s commercial banks, Jude Osas stated that the 64 bank account report is encompassing and enough to nail anybody if the powers that be allow it.
In his words, “Everybody knows that the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa is an errand boy to APC National Leader and former Governor of Lagos State, Bola Ahmed Tinubu. So the whole silence adopted by the anti-graft agencies is understandable.
“With a report that publicly quotes a BVN and names of about 64 bank accounts attached to it, even the banking system have been bought. Ordinarily, once a name attached to a BVN does not tally in all the bank accounts associated with it, the owner is called by the banks to rectify the anomaly. How this escaped the BVN banking regulation policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) remains a mystery because all the 64 bank account associated with the Obasa BVN 2296663231 have different names. As a banker, I know that this can only happen if the owner has internal backing within the banking industry because the BVN will expose the disparity in the names. If it is one BVN, the names has to tally. The number of accounts is not an issue, the man can operate 100 bank accounts if he so wishes, but the names and dates of birth on the bank account associated with that single BVN has to tally, that is CBN rule. So why didn’t it tally in all the 64 banks and nobody raised an alarm until now? Definitely, something is fishy. Somebody within the banking system where the BVN is domiciled is conniving with the owner of that bank account to conceal the truth.
“In the report which I read online, the Speaker was alleged to have used names like Ajayi Mudashiru Obasa, Obasa Abdulrahman Gbadunola and Gabriel Adedoyin Savage to register some of the 64 bank accounts, which are all tied to that single BVN 2296663231. I am a banker, and under BVN banking rules, it’s not possible except there is internal connivance.
“The anti-graft agencies need to wake up from their slumber and dig deep to unravel the truth. Lagosians demand to know the truth because we are talking of public funds being misapropriated here. This is a report that said that the Lagos House of Assembly Speaker awarded contracts to himself using different companies owned by him and also got the Assembly to approve N258m for printing of invitation cards for the inauguration of lawmakers two months after the event held. Such report shouldn’t be swept under the rug. Lagosians have a right to know the truth, irrespective of whose ox is gored.