1:05 AM / Tuesday November 21, 2017

19 May 2017

Tipoff leads SWAT team to upscale Lagos pad with bundles of U. S. cash

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
May 19, 2017 Category: Diaspora Posted by:

Neatly-bound bundles of fresh U.S. dollars, Nigerian naira and British pounds totaling over $50 million were recovered by an anti-graft “swat team” in a raid at the Osborne Towers, a luxury building in an upscale section of Lagos.

The raid was orchestrated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) acting on a new policy targeting corruption and ordered by President Muhammadu Buhari. The policy provides an incentive for whistleblowers who stand to receive between 2.5 percent-5 percent of the recovered amount when ill-gotten gains are found.

Since the policy was put in place, several raids based on whistle-blower tips have resulted in large cash hauls. According to their website, the EFCC recovered unreported funds of $817,000 in a Lagos Market, and $41.5 million at a shopping plaza, for a total of over $180 million since the beginning of the year.

Now, a referee will be required to decide who owns the massive trove as at least two Nigerian officials have claimed rights to it – Gov. Nyesom Wike of Rovers State or the director-general of the National Intelligence Agency, Ayodele Oke, who claims the cash was currency for “covert operations.”

Osborne Towers is one of the posh new highrises built for Nigeria’s pampered elite. Residents include a former governor, a recently retired officer the national oil company, and a TV personality, among others.

Activist lawyer Femi Falana in an open editorial expressed disbelief: “Are Nigerians to believe than an agency of the federal government kept about $50 million in an apartment without adequate security personnel to guard the money? Why was the fund not kept in a safe in the Office of the National Security Adviser?”


But this week, Nigerians weren’t the only ones having to explain the provenance of large sums of cash.  High level executives at Royal Dutch Shell and the Rome-based oil and gas company Eni, according to an investigation by the watchdog groups Global Witness and Finance Uncovered, knowingly took part in a “vast bribery scheme that robbed the Nigerian people of over a billion dollars.”

Entitled “Shell Knew,” the report includes newly-unearthed internal emails showing that the oil companies were aware that a $1 billion payment for “one of Africa’s most valuable oil blocks” would end up in the hands of convicted money launderer and ex-Nigerian oil minister Dan Etete, and from there “would flow onward for bribes.”

“This is one of the worst corruption scandals the oil industry has ever seen, and this is the biggest development so far,” said Simon Taylor, co-founder of Global Witness, which has been investigating the scandal for six years. The oil giants have long-denied that they were aware of any foul playing, saying that they only made payments to the Nigerian government.

“Today’s new evidence shows senior executives at the world’s fifth biggest company knowingly entered into a corrupt deal that deprived the Nigerian people of $1.1 billion,” Taylor continued. “That is more than the country’s entire health budget for 2016.”

Shell is currently facing trial for charges of international corruption; an Italian court will begin hearings on April 20 to determine whether the trial will proceed.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter

Leave a Comment

Recent News

Go With The-Flo

CeCe Winans accepts the Spirit Award at Lisa Collins’ 20th Annual “First Ladies High Tea”

November 16, 2017

ABOVE PHOTO:  CeCe Winans (Photo: Jamie Lamor Thompson / Shutterstock)   By Florence Anthony Lisa Collins’ 20th...


Savvy Senior: Assistance dogs provide help and love

November 16, 2017

Dear Savvy Senior What can you tell me about assistance dogs for people with disabilities? My sister,...

Food And Beverage

A Very Versatile Holiday

November 16, 2017

ABOVE PHOTO:  Cola and Brown Sugar Glazed Ham   Family Features When planning this year’s holiday menu,...


Actress Della Reese dead at 86

November 20, 2017

(LOS ANGELES) — Della Reese, the actress and gospel-influenced singer who in middle age found her greatest...


Simple ways to follow a low-glycemic eating plan for better health

November 16, 2017

BPT Adopting a diet that mainly consists of foods ranking low on the Glycemic Index (GI) can...


God won’t let you be defeated

November 16, 2017

By Dianna Hobbs In my most recent YouTube family vlog (I love that you’re subscribing!), as I...

The Philadelphia Sunday Sun Staff