$13.9bn Transfer: Senate Hires Forensic Experts to Probe MTN

MTNA customer uses a mobile phone beside an MTN Group Ltd. 'Connect Point' in Lagos, Nigeria. Photographer: George Osodi
  • Senate Hires Forensic Experts to Probe MTN

The Senate on Wednesday said it had engaged the services of foreign forensic experts and lawyers to probe the $13.9bn allegedly transferred from Nigeria by MTN Nigeria illegally.

The Upper Chamber of the National Assembly stated that it would not treat the case lightly.

A public investigative hearing on the matter begins on Thursday (today).

The Upper Chamber of the National Assembly had begun a probe into the $13.9bn MTN allegedly transferred illegally from Nigeria to other countries between 2006 and 2016.

The Senate had last Thursday summoned the Central Bank of Nigeria, the MTN management, the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria, three commercial banks and some businessmen over an alleged violation of the Foreign Exchange (Monitoring and Miscellaneous) Act.

Those expected to appear before the panel also include Dr. Pascal Dozie, Col. Sani Bello (retd.), Dr. Okechukwu Elenemah, Ahmed Dasuki, Gbenga Oyebode, Babatunde Folawiyo and Victor Odili.

Also invited were Stanbic IBTC, Standard Chartered Bank, Citibank and Diamond Bank.

The Chairman, Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and Other Financial Institutions, Senator Rafiu Ibrahim, while briefing journalists on Wednesday, described the allegation as weighty.

He noted that the committee had written to MTN and its promoters as well as other parties allegedly involved in the transactions to appear before it on Thursday.

Ibrahim said, “As you know, the allegation is very weighty. It is a weighty allegation and we are going to deal with a lot of documents; these are documents that are about 16 years old. Based on that, we have got the approval of the leadership (of the Senate) and we have engaged international and local forensic experts – accountancy experts and lawyers. The team has been fully assembled since two days ago and it has started working.

“We are not taking this like a normal, periphery investigation because it will involve a lot of documents – banking transactions of many years. We have engaged them and they are on the ground. We will be starting the investigative hearing tomorrow (Thursday) to listen to each one of them. They (the team) will now take it from there. That is how far we have gone.”

About the Author

Samed Olukoya
Samed Olukoya is the CEO/Founder of investorsking.com, a digital business media, with over 10 years' experience as a foreign exchange research analyst and trader. A graduate of University of East London, U.K. and a vivid financial markets analyst.

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