29 November 2012

Nigeria: Minting Company MD Suspended Over Alleged Misappropriation

The Board of the Nigerian Security Printing and Minting Company (NSPMC) has opened an investigation into alleged misappropriation of funds and newly printed bank notes, just as the firm's managing director, Ehi Okoyomon, has been directed to proceed on an indefinite compulsory leave after seven and half years as the chief executive of the company. He was ordered to go leave on Monday, November 26, 2012 and .

LEADERSHIP reliably learnt yesterday that the board of directors of NSPMC, which is headed by the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, also named an executive director in the company, Ahmed Bamali, as acting chief executive of the printing company.

The CBN owns 77 percent of NSPMC, the Bureau for Public Enterprises (BPE) has a 20.06 percent shares in the company while De Rue of UK owns the remaining 2.94 percent.

Only two month ago, the Lagos Police Command arrested an employee of NSPMC after he was caught in possession of close to N1 million in newly printed but unnumbered bank notes.

Meanwhile, the NSPMC board has set up a team of internal auditors to investigate and determine just how much has been misappropriated over the years.

Sources also informed LEADERSHIP that the team had on Tuesday arrived in both the Lagos and Abuja offices of NSPMC and had begun questioning the four executive directors of the company.

Information provided by sources within the financial sector also suggested that, in an attempt to ward off an official investigation over the increasing incidence of newly printed notes being stolen right from the source, about 39 workers were sacked from the establishment on Friday November 23, 2012.

While it is not clear when the board met and took all these decisions, the acting managing director, Ahmed Bamali, who was executive director for corporate services, reportedly learnt of his appointment on Monday, November 26, 2012, the same day Okoyomon was sent on indefinite leave.

Bamali, the Magajin Gari Zazzau, before joining NSPMC, was an assistant director at Abuja Metropolitan Management Agency, and was once a general manager for human resources at Mtel. He was also a foundation member of First Securities Discount House.

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