There is no respite for the five bank chiefs who were sa cked in Nigeria last week over their banks’ troubles, as the anti-graft Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has frozen the ir personal bank accounts.
The local press reported Saturday that the accounts of the Chief Executive Offic ers (CEOs) of the banks as well as those of the managing directors of the banksâ? subsidiaries had been frozen.
The report said an attempt by a former executive director of Union Bank Plc, one of five affected banks, to withdraw 20 million naira from his account on Monday, prompted the decision to freeze the account.
â?We have frozen the accounts of the five bank Executives and 14 Managing Direc tors of their subsidiaries. These accounts are under investigation and it is a routine procedure that we should place embargo on them,” the report quo ted an unidentified EFCC source as saying.
Three of the CEOs – Union Bank’s Bartholomew Ebong, FinBank’s Okey Nwosu and Afr ibank Nigeria Plc’s Sebastian Adigwe – have given themselves up to the EFCC while two others – Cecilia Ibru of Oceanic and Erastus Akingbola of Intercontinental Bank – are still being sought.
On Friday, the private Thisday newspaper reported that Akingbola has fled into s elf-exile to avoid harassment.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) replaced the CEOs and the management of the ba nks and injected 402 billion naira into the financial institutions to save them from possible collapse, after they were found to be withering under the yoke of huge, non-performing loans.
The apex bank has also published the list of supposed debtors of the affected ba nks, including politicians and businessmen, while the EFCC has given them one week to pay up or be prosecuted.