If truly a bank is a place where they lend you an umbrella in fair weather and ask for it back when it begins to rain, then Fidelity Bank might be getting drenched in torrential doses of the proverbial bank’s poison.
Barely few weeks after a senior staff at the Allen Avenue branch of Fidelity Bank caused a ruckus by allegedly making away with 250 million Naira of a customer’s money, another huge financial scam scandal has hit the bank squarely in the face, leaving the management to stagger unsteadily like dazed drunkards.
The latest heist is said to have been perpetrated by Wasiu Adegbemi and Kemi Adegboyega, two dare-devil staff of the bank, sometime in March 2017. Along with their accomplices, they carried out a carefully-orchestrated plan to defraud several bank customers of a whooping one hundred and fifty million Naira. They have since been dragged before a federal high court by the aggrieved customers who are hell bent on recovering their money.
The names of their accomplices are given as Ismaeel Salami, Chukwunomso Ifeanyi, Okpetu John, James Idagu, Oyelade Shola, Osuolale Hameed, Akeem Adeshina, and others who have since absconded into thin air to evade justice. Some of them are, shockingly, staff of telecommunications giant MTN. This is according to charge sheet FHC/L248C/!7 at the Federal High Court of Nigeria in Lagos.
Together, they allegedly conspired to steal a grand total of 150 million Naira belonging to Messrs Olusanjo Kazeem Ayofe, Aslan Investment Limited, Idowu Ibironke and Ayodeji Fagbohun who had been maintaining accounts with the bank for a long time.
To aid them in their dastardly plan, they somehow plotted with some unscrupulous staff of MTN to transfer the plaintiffs’ phone numbers to other sim cards under the guise of a SIM swap registration. This ensured the plaintiffs would not get any notification of financial transactions on their accounts during the period of the fraud. Thereafter, the fraudsters proceeded to use illegally-acquired ATM cards to fraudulently siphon money from the plaintiffs’ bank accounts.
At a time when the credit crunch has led to increased competition among the financial institutions, any case like this might be perceived by existing and potential customers as an indication that the bank is not trustworthy.
No wonder senior management of Fidelity have become jittery at the recent spate of fraud by their staff which is beginning to drag the bank’s good name through the mud.