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Ambode unhappy over allegations of pocketing N9.9bn

Ambode said the frozen accounts were used for the administrative operations of Lagos.

Akinwunmi Ambode was Lagos State governor between 2015 and 2019 [African Examiner]

Justice Chuka Obiozor of the Federal High Court in Lagos ordered the freezing of the accounts belonging to the Lagos State government on Tuesday, August 6, 2019.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had filed an ex-parte application before the court to freeze the accounts pending the conclusion of investigation and possible prosecution of Adewale Adesanya, the Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Chief of Staff to Ambode who was governor between 2015 and 2019.

Many media reports had linked the accounts to Ambode, with suggestions that the current probe is a fallout of his rift with the leaders of his All Progressives Congress (APC).

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However, in a statement signed by his media aide, Habib Aruna, on Friday, August 9, Ambode said the frozen accounts were used for the administrative operations of the Lagos government and never for personal use.

He noted that the accounts have been operated by previous and present administrations to ensure smooth operations of government activities.

"The former governor was not and will never be involved in any unauthorized use of government property and resources," the statement read.

Aruna said the clarification was important to counter the misleading press statement by the EFCC.

He cautioned that Ambode is entitled to some deserved rest without the unwarranted attacks on his well-earned reputation as a former governor.

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In an affidavit deposed to by Kungmi Daniel, an EFCC operative, the N9.9 billion in question is domiciled in three banks: First City Monument Bank (FCMB), Access Bank and Zenith Bank.

The EFCC said there was a huge inflow of a total of N9,927,714,443.29 from the state accounts into the FCMB account opened on September 17, 2018.

Adesanya and other signatories to the FCMB account are accused of making fraudulent transfers from the accounts of the Lagos State Government and dissipating the funds.

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