Captain Idahosa Wells -Okunbo has been vindicated in the case between him and former Skye Band PLC Chairman, Mr Tunde Ayeni.
It will be recalled that Ayeni had laid down accusations of corruption against the Edo Billionaire .
After due diligence and investigations, the Nigerian Police Force have cleared Captain Hosa of all the allegations describing them as malicious, baseless and false.
Rather, in an interesting twist to the tale, Ayeni has found himself in hot soup for on allegations of blackmail and attempting to influence the report.
Captain Hosa who was once a business ally and benefactor of Ayeni has in turn, written to the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami Abdulrasheed Bawa of the EFCC, briefing them on the report of the police investigations and urging them to act on it.
The report generated from the office of the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu reads in part: “Upon the receipt of the petition and in compliance with the directive of the Inspector General of Police that, the matter under reference should be investigated, on the 7th January 2021, the suspect (Captain Idahosa Wells-Okunbo) volunteered a statement under word of caution and denied all the allegations levelled against him and presented all the documentary evidence to support his claims and transactions that took place between him (Captain Idahosa Wells-Okunbo) and the complainant (Dr Tunde Ayeni).
“All the documents submitted by the suspect (Captain Idahosa Wells-Okunbo) were perused, scrutinised and forensically investigated and were found to be genuine and they were all endorsed by the parties (Dr Tunde Ayeni and Captain Idahosa Wells-Okunbo) to the transactions.”
In the report, the police stated that during the investigations, all the requisite documents were copied and distributed by the parties to all stakeholders and relevant agencies, and thereafter Ayeni was invited for his statements.
In their findings, the Police Investigating team informed that they established that both men had been friends since 2003, which graduated into a strong business relationship and dealings over the years, one of which was Ocean Marine Security Limited, which later rebranded as Ocean Marine Solutions Limited.
The police report stated that tracing the ownership structure of the company, it was noted: “That Ocean Marine Solutions Limited, then, has the following shareholders, Captain Idahosa Wells-Okunbo – 46%; Dr Tunde Ayeni – 35%; Garth Dooley – 14%; Admiral Augustus Aikhomu originally has 5%, which was subsequently re-acquired by Captain Idahosa Wells-Okunbo and Dr Tunde Ayeni, who also became chairman and vice-chairman respectively.
“That the complainant, Dr Tunde Ayeni, voluntarily and legally transferred his shares and that of his wife from Ocean Marine Solutions Limited (OMS) and its subsidiaries to Capt Idahosa Wells-Okunbo in consideration of the total sum of N2billion, which the complainant (Dr Tunde Ayeni) acknowledged receipt of same and resigned his membership from the board of Ocean Marine Solutions Limited (OMS) and its subsidiaries.”
The police report concluded thus: “That the allegations of stealing and criminal diversion of company funds as alleged by the complainant, Dr Tunde Ayeni against the suspect, Captain Idahosa Wells-Okunbo could not be established as there was documentary evidence provided by the suspect – Captain Idahosa Wells-Okunbo, which clearly shows that Captain Idahosa Okunbo, has lawfully acquired Dr Tunde Ayeni’s interest in Ocean Marine Solutions Limited (OMS) for a valuable consideration of N2, 000, 000, 000 (Two Billion Naira only).
“So, also, the allegation of criminal diversion of company funds is baseless, malicious and false as it hasn’t been proven by the complainant.”
The police report has been forwarded to the EFCC and the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, ending a bizarre tale of one man’s betrayal against a friend and benefactor whose company he wanted to aquire when down with an ailment.
Whereas a good friend would hold the forte for a friend who helped so much in raising him from the dust when he was down and exposing him to businesses through which he made billions of Naira, Ayeni not only tried to possess a company he had clearly relinquished but also released a media onslaught against his erstwhile benefactor.
Sources close to the former Skye Bank PLC have reportedly vowed to continue the media war and falsehood in an attempt to change the narrative, hinted a police source.
Nevertheless, in his separate letters to the AGF and the EFCC, Okunbo through his lawyer, Augustine Alegeh of Alegeh and Co., expressed the appreciation of his client to Malami for intervening when Ayeni attempted to duplicate the investigation by sending same petition to the police and the EFCC.
“We respectfully request the Honourable Attorney General and Minister of Justice to notify the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission of the outcome of the investigation by the officers of the Inspector General of police so that the matter can be put to rest and treated as closed,” the letter stated.
In yet another letter to the EFCC chairman, Okunbo’s lawyers, while reiterating the content of the letter they sent to Malami, also emphasised to Bawa: “We trust you will now treat the matter as closed.”
Interestingly, the IG’s investigation report seems to have confirmed and validated an earlier EFCC report of 2019, which also stated that Ayeni had actually sold his shares in OMSL.
According to the EFCC report with reference number EFCC/EC/GC/31/2538, dated June 25, 2019 and signed by the Director of Operations, Mohammed Umar Abba, “…Investigation was extended to Corporate Affairs Commission, where it was discovered that Dr. Ayeni had on the 8th August, 2018, actually sold his 35 million ordinary shares in Ocean Marine Solutions Limited and 37.2 million ordinary shares in PPP Fluid Mechanics Limited to Wells Property Development Company Limited, a subsidiary of Ocean Marine Solutions Limited.
“Consequent upon the following, the Commission’s investigation so far did not indict the Chairman of Ocean Marine Solutions and its subsidiary companies, Capt. Idahosa Wells Okunbo on the alleged diversion of 29.5 billion naira from the defunct Skye bank Plc., by Dr. Tunde Ayeni.”
It will be recalled that in a baffling development, despite the EFCC report, Ayeni, a few weeks ago, petitioned the EFCC again through his lawyer, Femi Falana, SAN, and alleged that he sold his shares at the OMS under duress while also accusing Okunbo of stealing and criminally diverting company funds.
However, three months after the petition became public, investigations carried out by the Inspector General of Police Monitoring Unit, have absolved Okunbo of any wrongdoing.