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Bank documents reveal How GTBank Sponsored VP Osinbajo, Campaign In 2015, Violating Campaign Finance Regulations

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Gauranty Trust Bank (GTBank) is accused of contributing N200 million to Muhammadu Buhari and Yemi Osinbajo's presidential campaign in 2015.

According to records obtained by Peoples Gazette, GTBank's Investment One fund management department paid N200 million to Osinbajo's campaign account in three installments of N100 million, N50 million, and N50 million ahead of the 2015 presidential election in three installments of N100 million, N50 million, and N50 million, respectively, read (here)

The donation of more than N1 million to a presidential candidate is prohibited under federal campaign finance law.

Despite its illegality, more documents revealed that the managing partner at Osinbajo’s law firm, SimmonsCooper Partners, Dapo Akinosun, also deposited N50 million naira in two payments of N25 million into the same campaign account for the vice president in 2015.
 
Two other lawyers who also paid money into Osinbajo’s campaign account were Olufemi Atoyebi, the Principal Partner at Femi Atoyebi and Co., and Temitope Lawani, the co-founder and Managing Partner at Helios Investment Partners.
 
It was gathered that the duo paid N10 million each, well above the allowable limit of N1 million.
 
Admitting the transactions, Investment One’s CEO, Ademola Aofoloju, insisted they were not inappropriate.
 
He said, "Any transactions we carry out for our clients are privileged and confidential."
 
Asked why the transaction was not shown in the firm’s financial report against regulatory standards, Aofolaju described the matter as "classified."
 
Also responding to Peoples Gazette, GTBank CEO, Segun Agbaje, said the financial institution had since 2011 divested its interest in Investment One.
 
He, however, refused to state whether or not the divestment was concluded as of 2015 when the illegal transactions were carried out.
 
Two former GTBank officials revealed that the company had not concluded its divestment from Investment One as of the time of the donations to Osinbajo’s campaign.
 
The transactions were a direct violation of the Nigerian Electoral Act 2010, which states in section 91(9) that "No individual or other entity shall donate more than N1,000,000.00 to any candidate." Subsection 11 says: "Any individual who knowingly acts in contravention of subsection (9) shall on conviction be liable to a maximum fine of N500,000.00 or imprisonment for a term of 9 months or both."
 
Meanwhile, Guaranty Trust Holding Company Plc (GTCO Plc) has taken over the affairs of Investment One Pension Managers Limited (IOPM) and Investment One Funds Management Limited (IOFM).
 
Segun Agbaje, Group Chief Executive Officer of GTCO Plc, said in a statement on Monday that the company took over the subsidiaries of Investment One Financial Services Limited after acquiring a 100 percent equity stake.
 
He said the company took over IOPM and IOFM in order to keep driving Africa’s growth by making end-to-end financial services easily accessible to every African and African business by leveraging technology and strategic partnerships.
 
Agbaje said the company has notified the Nigerian Exchange Group (NGX) and the public of both acquisitions, adding that the purchase of the two companies is in line with GTCO Plc’s aspirations to operate across the financial services sector value chain in Africa.
 
He explained that while the group is evolving as an organisation, it remains committed to its founding values, which have endeared its brand to millions of people across Africa and beyond, and which continue to drive its financial success.



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