Governor Peter Ayodele Fayose formerly known as Mr. Ayodele Oluwayose alias Spotless must be a genius of some sort.
Prior to 2003, Mr. Ayodele Fayose was a successful businessman (at least going by Nigerian standard). In his base in Ibadan, he was considered a big-boy. A man about town. His Spotless Group was making money.
However, he was not satisfied with the business horizon Spotless offered him. He wanted something bigger. A bigger money making machine. That was how he thought about politics. The ultimate ‘Kalokalo’ to instant wealth and prosperity in Nigeria.
Being a master strategist, Mr. Fayose knew what Ekiti people wanted if he is to occupy the Government house.
Having been burdened with the visionless leadership of Otunba Niyi Adebayo, who, had power for four years but did not understand what to do with it, Ekiti people wanted some action. Hence Ayodele Fayose provided enough.
He gave water to those who were thirsty. He gave energy (Kerosene) to the poor and economically disadvantaged. He provided food for the orphans and lent a helping hand to the unemployed. All these were financed from the initial capital he raised for his ultimate business game, the seat of power in Ado-Ekiti.
Ekiti people were simply hoodwinked. Ayodele Fayose had them under his spell. Election time came and Otunba Niyi Adebayo was booted out. In came the sower. And what we sow, the Holy Book tells us, we shall reap.
This is exactly what Ayodele Fayose set out to do on entering the Government House. To reap the fruits of his investment.
To make the highest returns on his investment, Governor Fayose thought of a perfect sink: Ekiti State Integrated Poultry Project. Being a professional in the business, he already had his contacts, the laundrymen, he would use for his ultimate washing machine.
He knew what was at stake. He must be aware, understand and comprehend the following factors vital to the success of his scheme. These are; the business environment; amount involved; time factor; amount of trust needed; level of law enforcement; long-term planned disposition of funds and level of compliance in the banking and financial industry.
He knew the business environment fairly well. His friend Mr. Gbenga James had a poultry farm in Ibadan, where he used to operate from. He concluded a business plan for the Ekiti State Integrated Poultry Project to be executed by Gbenga James. Total amount to be washed N1.2billion.
He also considered the amount of time he had to perfect his scheme. To the initiated, the technique chosen here will likely reflect whether the operation is a once-and-for all or sporadic event or something to be conducted on an on-going basis. This will ultimately decide the degree of haste that is required.
What did the Governor do? Using various techniques and methods, he put his scheme through the three stages of placement, layering and integration.
He also took trust into consideration. So he put his Personal Assistant Mr. Goke Olatunji and Deputy Governor Chief (Mrs.) Abiodun Olujinmi in charge of the operation. He knew judgment is required on how much potential partners/accomplices have at stake in cooperation or betrayal and where on the fear-greed tradeoff curve they happen to be. So he also co-opted the members of the State House of Assembly. With his immunity and the State House of Assembly already turned into an accomplice he thought he had a foolproof plan.
However, there is never a perfect plan and with time his scheme began to fall into pieces.
President Olusegun Obasanjo on a courtesy visit to Ekiti State went to see the Afao-located Poultry project. Curiosity caught his better side of caution. How come a poultry farm of this size can be sparkling clean of manure and devoid of the bad smell usually associated with such locations?
The President should know better. He is a poultry farmer. Governor Fayose has been beaten at his own game. Petitions began to fly. Were the birds the President saw during his visit rented from a popular farm in Ibadan? How much exactly has been expended on the project?Where did all the money go?
Governor Fayose’s greatest undoing was ignoring the provisions of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act (MLPA) and Economic and Financial Crimes (Establishment) Act (EFCC) both of 2004.
Laundering schemes require time and resources. How much energy and expenditure that will be put into the effort to multiply levels of cover and obscure the paper trail depend on the assessment of how serious and effective investigations are likely to be?
Governor Ayodele Fayose failed in his assessment of Mallam Ribadu and his team to provide the necessary evidence that will puncture his washing machine.
The Governor also ignored the compliance level now prevalent within our banking industry. Lodgments and withdrawals within the banking system can now be traced and audited. The source, origin, destination and beneficiary of funds can now also be determined.All thanks to MLPA and EFCC Acts of 2004.
Finally, Governor Ayodele Fayose has been beaten at his own game. The washing machine in Ekiti has been unmasked. It is now left for the law court to determine how long the operation lasted, who benefited and the total amount involved among other issues.
However, whatever might be the outcome of the Money Laundering charges, Governor Fayose and his associates now face in the law court, Ekiti people will be the ultimate winners.
Join the discussion