Top banker, Nnamdi Okonkwo, is gradually adorning the toga of one of Nigeria’s most arrested and detained bank executives, our investigation has uncovered.
“His incessant invitation, interrogation and detention by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission”, lamented a source, “is becoming worrisome.”
The former MD of Fidelity Bank and incoming MD, First Bank of Nigeria Holdings Plc, it would be recalled, has continued to be quizzed and detained in the last few years by EFCC.
His ‘ordeal’, of course, stems from his alleged financial dealings with wanted Minister of Petroleum, under ex President Goodluck Jonathan, Mrs Diezani Allison-Madueke.
Accused of assisting Mrs Allison-Madueke, a former staff of Shell Petroleum Development Corporation, to launder millions of dollars, Okonkwo has not been able to extricate himself from the monumental allegation and scandal ever since.
First was an alleged $153m. Then, another $151m. And now $72.870m, which the anti graft agency said it just unearthed.
Unique Hitz findings further revealed that so far, the EFCC has arrested and detained Okonkwo on a number of occasions. He was allegedly detained first in April 2015, then April 2016, November 2021 and December 2021.
Already charged with alleged fraud, his case keeps resurrecting.
Born over 50 years ago in Otukpo, Benue State, John Nnamdi Okonkwo is, however, from Anambra State. An Actuarial Science graduate of the University of Benin, with an MBA in Banking and Finance, from Enugu State University of Science and Technology, he is married to Uche and their union is blessed with children.
The embattled Okonkwo began his banking career with the defunct Merchant Bank of Africa, Nigeria, in 1990. He crossed over to Guaranty Trust Bank in 1993. From there, he joined UBA, rising to become the MD/CEO of UBA Ghana. In 2012, he pitched his banking tent with Fidelity Bank, first as an Executive Director and in 2014, he became the MD. He quit the position on December 31, 2020. And now, he’s waiting to take over as the MD of First Bank of Nigeria Holdings Plc.