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Nigeria: OMS – As Ayeni, Okunbo Battle Over Possession – NEWPAPER24

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Nigeria: OMS – As Ayeni, Okunbo Battle Over Possession

2021-01-18 11:53:35

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Abuja — The unfolding battle for the possession of Ocean Marine Safety (OMS) Restricted has been insightful.

All of it got here to mild when a former chairman of the defunct Skye Financial institution (now Polaris Financial institution), Mr Tunde Ayeni, dragged his enterprise accomplice, Edo State-born oil magnate Captain Hosa Okunbo, to the Financial and Monetary Crimes Fee (EFCC) on allegations of mismanagement, stealing and diversion of funds from OMS Restricted.

Ayeni, it was learnt, offered his shares in OMS in 2018. After cost, he resigned his appointment as director and shareholder of the corporate, it was gathered.

However a twist was to emerge as he claims that he stays a shareholder within the firm.

Based on a petition written by his counsel, Mr Femi Fálànà (SAN), Ayeni alleged that Okunbo tried to scheme him out of the corporate, upon his discovery of “a number of stealing and diversion in addition to gross mismanagement of huge sums of cash belonging to the corporate.”

He additionally alleged that Okunbo took over management of the corporate whereas he (Ayeni) was distracted by a court docket trial.

Ayeni who acknowledged Okubo as being his enterprise accomplice since 2003, recounted that they each invested within the Ibadan Electrical energy Distribution Firm (IBEDC). He nonetheless mentioned his accomplice moved the corporate’s account to a different financial institution and deserted compensation of a $100 million mortgage used to fund the acquisition of the ability agency.

“Subsequently, Capt. Hosa Okunbo instructed our consumer that each one accounts of the companies that he was concerned in for which he was a signatory, was being rumoured to be closed due to the trial our consumer was dealing with, and it was essential for him to step apart from the Ocean Marine and its subsidiaries construction and hand over to him, in order that he might defend the earnings sources as that was the one supply of earnings with which to fund the trustworthy compensation of the gross liabilities, which had been effectively over $150 million owed to a consortium of banks led by Polaris Financial institution over the acquisition of the IBEDC and the YEDC DisCos as on the time,” the petition reads.

“Our consumer agreed to the recommendation and didn’t doubt Capt. Hosa Okunbo’s sincerity and intention to behave in good religion, based mostly on the belief our consumer had in him as they’d each been working and partnering collectively since July 2003.

“At no level was an precise sale of his curiosity in Ocean Marine Options Ltd or any of its subsidiaries or associates ever mentioned, however Capt. Hosa Okunbo is making an attempt to make use of the gents’s association to forcefully take over his holdings of the Firm whose month-to-month earnings is about $9 million,” Ayeni alleged in his petition.

Nonetheless, paperwork sighted by our correspondent revealed that Ayeni offered off his shares and stop to be a director of OMS.

It was additionally learnt that Ayeni approached Okunbo – who had invited him on board of OMS – to promote his 35 per cent stake within the firm, following his exit from Skye Financial institution.

Based on the paperwork, in August 2018, Ayeni, utilizing his firm, Prime Union Funding Restricted, agreed to promote his shares together with the 175, 000, 000 abnormal shares in GYRO (and the 50, 000, 000 shares held by Mrs Ayeni) to Wells Property Growth Firm Restricted for the whole sum of N2bn (Two billion naira).

The sale was confirmed by a particular decision of the board of Prime Union Funding Restricted, signed by Ayeni and his spouse, Biola in identical month.

The doc additional revealed that Okunbo, following the sale settlement, authorised the switch of N1 billion to Ayeni’s Olutoyl Property Growth and Companies Ltd’s Sterling Checking account, on November 26, 2018.

Whereas it was mutually agreed that the stability shall be paid on month-to-month instalment foundation, the OMS Board, it was learnt, notified the Central Financial institution of Nigeria (CBN), and the Workplace of the Vice President about Ayeni’s resignation of his membership of the board of the OMS and its affiliate firms.

In January 2019, the CBN acknowledged the transaction, when it said, “Please, be told that the resignation of Dr Ayeni from the board of your organization doesn’t in any approach have an effect on his legal responsibility, or that of Ocean Marine Options Restricted or any of its subsidiaries/group members, to Skye Financial institution Plc (now Polaris Financial institution Restricted) and, certainly, some other financial institution in Nigeria.”

On March 1, the workplace of the Vice President, in an acknowledgement letter titled ‘Re: Notification of Resignation and Share Divestment of Dr Olatunde John Ayeni’, applauded Capt. Okunbo’s renewed dedication to service within the agricultural, aviation and hospitality sectors of the financial system.

The letter signed by the deputy chief of workers to the President, Ade Ipaye added, “Your Firm’s disclaimer as regards the mentioned Dr. Ayeni’s actions as chairman of Skye Financial institution has been duly famous and delivered to the eye of His Excellency, the Vice President.”

In the meantime, the Financial and Monetary Crimes Fee (EFCC) in a letter to the chairman and Board of Administrators of OMS on June 25, 2019, confirmed with the Company Affairs Fee (CAC) that Ayeni had offered his whole shares and resigned as director and shareholders of the corporate.

The letter signed by EFCC’s director of Operations, Mohammed Umar Abba, was tilted: “Re: Investigation Actions”.

It learn partially: “We confer with your letters dated twentieth December 2018, fifteenth April 2019, twenty second Might, 2019 and NNPC letter dated twenty eighth December 2018 on the above topic.

“We want to state that in June 2017, a petition relating to infractions by the earlier Board and Administration of Skye Financial institution was forwarded from the Workplace of the Vice President, Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“In the middle of investigation, Dr Tunde Ayeni was invited and he volunteered a press release confirming the withdrawal of 29.5 billion naira money from the Skye Financial institution. He, nonetheless, promised to refund the mentioned funds to the financial institution and additional claimed to have some curiosity in Ocean Marine and its subsidiary firms.

“Primarily based on the above, investigation was prolonged to the Company Affairs Fee the place it was found that Dr Tunde Ayeni had on the eighth August, 2018 really offered his 35 million abnormal shares in Ocean Marine Options Restricted and 37.2 million abnormal shares in PPP Fluid Mechanics Restricted to Wells Property Growth Firm Restricted, a subsidiary of Ocean Marine Options Ltd.”

The EFCC had mentioned that its investigation thus far didn’t indict the chairman of OMS and its subsidiary firms, Capt Okunbo.

Dispelling Ayeni’s declare, the administration of OMS said that he ceased being part of both OMS or its related firms since 2018 when he resigned after promoting all his shares.

The OMS administration additionally said that Ayeni signed validly-executed firm resolutions and different paperwork, transferring his shares in OMS and its different related firms to Wells Property Restricted.

The administration mentioned, “The eye of the Board of Ocean Marine Options Restricted (OMS) has been drawn to a number of petitions written to numerous Authorities Businesses and extensively circulated on-line, written, authored and orchestrated by Dr. Olatunde John Ayeni, a former Director and shareholder of OMS.

“Dr Olatunde John Ayeni is now not a director of OMS and any of its related firms having resigned from OMS since August 2018,” the signees posited.

Stressing that he offered and transferred all his shares and pursuits to Wells Property Growth Firm Restricted for invaluable consideration since 2018, the administration famous that when Ayeni grew to become conscious in September 2020 that Captain Okunbo had well being points and was present process remedy in London, he “has since then began making false claims that he’s nonetheless part of OMS.”

However there was extra. Ayeni had additionally alleged in his petition that businessman and politician, Prince Ned Nwoko acquired the sum of $6,000,000 (Six Million {Dollars}) from him and Captain Idahosa Okunbo, in a enterprise take care of Ocean Marine Options (OMS) Restricted, over which he allegedly promised to pay the corporate the sum of $30,000,000 (Thirty Million {Dollars}).

He alleged that Nwoko had approached OMS Restricted, requesting it to fund the method for the Paris Membership refunds to the Native Governments of Nigeria, and in addition that he (Nwoko) had charged 20 per cent of the refund as his price, and that upon success, he would pay OMS the sum of $30,000,000 as return for the funding.

Nonetheless, in a letter addressed to the Inspector Common of Police, Mohammed Adamu, Nwoko said that at no time limit “have I had any dealings with Ayeni or Ocean Marine Options in no matter capability.”

Describing Ayeni’s assertion as “a malicious and devoid of fact”, Nwoko mentioned he “by no means acquired any sum from Ayeni which he purported in his petition and has by no means performed any position in any respect because it pertains to this transaction.

“All transactions on the subject material had been achieved instantly with Capt. (Dr.) Idahosa Wells Okunbo in his private capability to the exclusion of some other social gathering together with Ocean Marine Options Restricted. To counsel in any other case as contained within the mentioned petition is merely a malicious assertion devoid of fact.”

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