Monday, 15 April 2013
ECO BANK IN TROUBLE OVER NNPC ACCOUNT FRAUD,MAY LOSE LICENCE
The management of Jibril Aku-led Eco Bank is presently running from pillar to post from an impending trouble over an unprofessional conducts, fraud and financial malpractice on an account belonging to one of the institutions` biggest customers, Francis Ogaree who`s one of the senior managers with the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) of NNPC Towers, Abuja.
Aside suing the bank for a N100m damages, Francis Ogaree has vowed to make sure Eco bank loses its banking licence as a result of what he termed as unprofessional, unethical and sharp banking practices by falsifying his account statements thereby ridiculing his person before credit bureau and other financial institutions.
According to the statement of claims made available to National Enquirer by Ogaree`s counsel, Dr. Yemi Oke of MJS Partners suing the bank for a N100m and directing the apex bank, the central bank of Nigeria to revoke Eco bank`s licence, Eco bank was said to have been in the habit of illegally deducting monies from Ogaree`s domiciliary account without his consent.
We gathered reliably that, Ogaree who operates three different domiciliary accounts with details as follow: 0012510100651801 (now 0012047436) and 0015010100651801 (0012068781) and one other at the bank`s headquarters on Ahmadu Bello Way, Victoria Island, Lagos was stunned when sometimes in 2007/2008 he experienced unauthorized deductions in his account and informed the bank`s management which put up a lackadaisical attitude until he threatened a law suit before it was reversed .
And as if that was not enough, the bank has since continued and repeatedly making illegal deductions by cloning a separate credit card (ATM) attached to his domiciliary account simply because he (Ogaree) is a very busy executive who have no time to cross-check details of his spending until the recent one which was the last straw that broke the camel`s back.
Bubble burst when Ogaree who`s involved in a business transaction with a mega company required the approval of Credit Bureaus to clear him of any indebtedness with any company in Nigeria, a process which necessitates his banker`s clearance via the issuance of a Letter of Non-Indebtedness, and to his chagrin, his hope to get the said letter from Eco Bank was dashed as his Banker turned him down through an email from its representatives: Akaegbu Victoria (firstname.lastname@example.org) copying another Eco Bank top Staff, Alarapon Fadake (email@example.com) on March 1st, 2012 at 2.49pm stating that he is seriously indebted to the bank and cannot be issued with the letter.
Though very mad at this, the top NNPC staff, Ogaree had behaved wisely and responsibly by calling the attention of the affected branches to investigate, reconcile and rectify his account, all we learnt were to no avail as the bank`s management forwarded and widely circulated the falsified account statements and purported indebtedness to the Credit Bureaus and other financial institutions thereby portraying Ogaree a debtor, reckless and irresponsible human being who`s incapable of managing a business and paying his debts whereas after thorough checking, it was discovered that, Eco Bank had actually had outstanding payments in respect of a MasterCard account, the opening of which was neither authorized nor consented to by Ogaree.
We shall bring more from the legal tussle with suit No.: FHC/L/CS/410/2012 as events unfold. In our facts finding mission, National Enquirer got in touch with the head, corporate communications of EcoBank, Austin Osokpor but efforts were abortive as at the time of going to press.