Home » Rising Bank Fraud: HEDA Hails Ex Bank PHB MD Supreme Court Conviction, Wants EFCC to Probe Corruption in Banks

Rising Bank Fraud: HEDA Hails Ex Bank PHB MD Supreme Court Conviction, Wants EFCC to Probe Corruption in Banks

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The Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA Resource Centre) has commended the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), for their steadfastness and resilience in securing justice in the case of Francis Atuche, the former Managing Director of Bank PHB Plc, convicted for a N25.7 billion fraud scheme.

On Friday, 28th June, 2024, the Supreme Court of Nigeria delivered a final verdict, upholding the conviction of Francis Atuche. In a unanimous decision, Justice M.A.A. Adumein ruled that Atuche failed to provide sufficient evidence to overturn his conviction, which was initially handed down by the trial court and subsequently affirmed by the Court of Appeal. This judgment brings to an end a protracted legal battle that spanned over 13 years.

In a statement signed by HEDA Chairman, Olanrewaju Suraju, the anti-corruption group praised the EFCC’s legal team for their diligent prosecution of the case. “Despite the long road to justice, their consistency and resilience have ensured that justice was ultimately served. This victory is a significant milestone in the fight against corruption in Nigeria and serves as a deterrent to those who might consider engaging in financial crimes,” Suraju stated.

HEDA emphasized the importance of the EFCC adopting the same rigorous approach to all its ongoing cases, adding that the commission’s consistent commitment and tenacity are essential in the pursuit of justice.

Suraju further called on the EFCC and other anti-graft agencies to direct their attention to the Nigerian banking sector, urging them to investigate and prosecute instances of financial misappropriation and money laundering to the full extent of the law. “This will restore integrity to the sector and reinforce the message that corruption will not be tolerated,” he said.

In conclusion, HEDA reiterated its support for the EFCC and its efforts in combating corruption. “We remain committed to working alongside all stakeholders to promote transparency, accountability, and good governance in Nigeria,” Suraju affirmed.

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