The special anti-fraud unit of the Nigerian police today in Lagos arrested the former managing director of InterContinental Bank, Mahmoud Lai Alabi, for fraud related to a questionable loan write-off.
Mr. Alabi’s arrest followed a petition submitted to the unit by the brother of a whistleblower who was allegedly assassinated by hired killers for revealing shady dealings involving Bukola Saraki, the once-powerful governor of Kwara state who is now a senator.
Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, current Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), had appointed Mr. Alabi to run InterContinental Bank at the start of the CBN’s controversial banking reform. The reform began with the CBN’s sacking of several commercial bank chief executives deemed to be linked to corruption, and the appointment of new CEOs by Mr. Sanusi.
However, the appointment of Mr. Alabi raised serious concerns at the time. Mr. Alabi had served as the managing director of Songa Farms which is owned by the Saraki family. Mr. Saraki’s businesses owed some 32 billion naira to InterContinental Bank.