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Update: EFCC denies reported arrest of Access Bank MD, as bank clarifies invitation

The Economic and and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has denied the reported arrest of the Group Managing Director of Access Bank Nigeria Limited, Herbert Wigwe.

Acting Head of Media and Publicity of the EFCC, Tony Orilade, told our correspondent on Saturday that the reported arrest was not true, describing it as the handiwork of purveyors of fake news on social media.

The report had said that the youthful Wigwe was arrested allegedly in connection with the assets of SLOK Nigeria Limited owned by former Governor of Abia State, Orji Uzor Kalu. The former, now a senator, is currently serving a 12-year jail term for embezzling over N7 billion belonging to the Abia State Government, while he was the governor between 1999 and 2007.

The report also alleged that Wigwe was arrested for laundering money for former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Allison Madueke.

However, Access Bank in a statement made available to BusinessDay on Saturday, clarified the position, saying that Wigwe was invited by the anti-graft agency over issues relating to the credit facilities that were made available to SLOK Nigeria Limited by the defunt Diamond Bank.

“Access Bank had inherited SLOK credit following the recent merger between Access and Diamond Bank,” the statement said.

The statement said further that following fruitful engagement between the EFCC and the Bank, issues related to the SLOK credit facilities have been resolved.

Besides jailing Kalu for 12 years, the court also ordered that his companies, including Slok, be forfeited to the Federal Government.

 

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