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Alleged Criminal Conspiracy: Why government intensifies prosecution of First Bank Nigeria –British School

*The Management of Whiteplains British School, Abuja, insist the facts of the matter are available, commend the Federal Government for dragging First Bank Nigeria Limited, its Managing Director and three others to court over the financial institution’s purported forgery, criminal conspiracy

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

Despite reported denial of any wrong doing, ‘the elephant’ of the Nigerian banking sector is yet to slip through the net for purportedly forging a tripartite legal mortgage without the consent of the proprietor of the Whiteplains British School, Abuja, FCT.

ConsumerConnect reports the Management of the school have commended the Federal Government for dragging First Bank Limited, its Managing Director and three others to court in Abuja, FCT, over the financial institution’s alleged criminal conspiracy.

Dr. Francis Chukwuma Nwufoh, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Whitepains British Schools Limited, at a recent media briefing in Abuja, remarked: “The forgery by First Bank I believe is fraud done with the intent and purpose to disposes me of my property.”

Dr. Nwufoh urged the  office of the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister for Justice to continue the ‘good work’ by allowing the matter to continue in the court, so that First Bank could be brought to book.

The Chief Executive of the school also noted: “Whiteplains British School is happy with the steps taken by the Justice Ministry by charging all the accused to the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), before Justice Jude Onwuegbuzie.

“They were to be arraigned on  April 27, but they didn’t turn up.

“Due to their absence, the court fixed May 8 for their arraignment, while we were expecting the defendants to be docked the Director for Public Prosecution (DPP) applied that his office had asked for further investigation, that the matter should be discontinued.”

Nwufoh stated: “While I applaud that move by the Ministry, I would like to inform the Ministry and the general public that I  have first-hand knowledge of the entire exercise, and I proudly volunteer to provide relevant information to the DPP or any panel set up to further investigate the heinous crimes committed by the First Bank against the Whiteplains British school.”

He, therefore, urged the Federal Ministry of Justice not to discontinue the suit, but take an adjournment for a period as the facts of the matter are handy and can be provided at all times.

What regulators have uncovered, by Dr. Nwufoh

The CEO of Whitepains British Schools Limited further explained: “Gentlemen of the press permit me to provide you with the outcome of some of the investigations carried out by some bodies.

“The House of Representatives committee held a robust investigation of the matter and found the First Bank guilty of forging a document to take over our main campus.

“The police report also indicted the first bank of intention to take our property.”

Nwufoh as well insisted that he has the full information of the in-depth forgery and crimes committed by First Bank Nigeria and their Executive Officers.

“l will make them available to the Ministries, parastatals, courts of law and the entire world as the matter progresses.

“We, the Board and Management of Whitepains British School Ltd, will stop at nothing in making sure that we recover our stolen property from First Bank Nigeria,” stated he.

The school also said: “Mind you, this matter has been investigated fully by the  Inspector-General of Police IG (IRT) and found First Bank culpable; the National Assembly Committee on Public Hearing.

Again, after carefully hearing from concerned groups found First Bank Nigeria culpable.”

Nwufoh, however, assured that “a copy of the Report of the Committee on Public Petitions shall be made available in our subsequent media briefing.

First Bank’s attempt to block hearing by House Committee on Public Petitions

The Management of Whitepains British School Limited also alleged that “First Bank in their shameless attitude tried to block the Committee from hearing this heinous crime committed by them, saying that the matter has been determined by the Federal Court of Justice by Hon. Justice Binta Nyako.

“At this juncture, these bold, fearless and incorruptible members of the Committee under the Headship of Hon. Abonta hushed them by telling them that after every investigation, if anyone is found wanted in anyway the next correct thing to do is arraignment and prosecution.”

Nwufoh said: “They reminded them that the matter in Federal High Court was civil and not criminal in nature.

“They, in the Committee, also reminded them that they are also lawyers and that was how the matter was heard and all these revelations came out.

“The First Bank also refused to comply rather decided to employ the services of close 50 thugs, and invaded the school in a commando style forcefully took the keys from our security men and chased them and all our in-house staff away using self help.

He stated: “They went further and hired carpenters to climb the  two stories hostel of our boarding students and started removing the long span aluminum sheets thereby allowing rain to be entering our ultra modern purposed built facilities for close to 5 years now .

“The last and final body that investigated this forgery matter is IG -FIB Federal Investigation Bureau .

“Here again the investigation officers met their waterloo when  they told the First Bank Officers to bring the original Tripartite Legal Documents for forensic analysis they refused vehemently .

“They were also asked to identify their Directors who signed the documents they said the signatures were alien to them.”

According to him, “while all of us from Whiteplain’s side officially submitted our signatures for forensic analysis, First Bank for more than two years refused to sign anything or bring the original documents for the forensic.”

It is recalled the Federal Government recently requested an FCT High Court for more time to conduct further investigation into the allegations of forgery against the First Bank Limited and two lawyers.

Thus, the office of the Department of Public Prosecutions (DPP) applied for discontinuation of the case pending the investigation.

Ndidi Ukoha, Counsel to the DPP, reportedly informed the court that the office had written to it in line with the rules of the court and Section 107 of the ACJA.

The DPP, March 2023, filed a three-count charge of criminal conspiracy to forge a tripartite legal mortgage of the Whiteplains British School, Abuja, without the consent of the proprietor of the school, Francis Chukwuma Nwufor in 2016.

The alleged offences are contrary to Sections 96, 363 and 311 of the Penal Code Law.

Justice Onwuegbuzie has fixed June 7 for the hearing of the application, report said.

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