Saturday 13 April 2024

From Cubana Brothers To Ned Nwoko’s Wife, How EFCC Ignored Nigerian Elites


From Cubana brothers to Ned Nwoko’s wife, how EFCC ignored Nigerian elite’s misuse of naira to unleash nightmare on Bobrisky, other everyday citizens

Videos on social media showed Obi Cubana standing in his living room and getting drenched in naira notes days before the burial.

Male Crossdresser Idris ‘Bobrisky’ Okuneye sparked nationwide heated debates when he won the award for Best Dressed Female at a movie premiere on March 24 but because there was no Nigerian law that explicitly banned crossdressing, he was allowed to walk free. 

But the award might have left a bitter taste in the mouth of the authorities of a conservative nation who later singled out the crossdresser for spraying naira notes at the premiere’s afterparty and charged him with naira abuse.

In a hurried prosecution that only lasted a week, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission succeeded in convicting and sentencing crossdresser Bobrisky to six months imprisonment without the option of fine for abusing the naira.

The sentence left Nigerians aghast as it validated claims that the anti-graft commission was selective in its administration of justice and targeted citizens who did not have the financial wherewithal to defend themselves against government-backed repression.

The EFCC filed a four-count charge of naira abuse against Bobrisky and tendered video evidence of the crossdresser “spraying” the naira, a common practice among Nigerians who lavish currency notes at parties as a sign of affection for the celebrant.

Section 21(3) of the CBN Act 2007 states that “spraying of, dancing or matching(sic) on the Naira or any note issued by the Bank during social occasions or otherwise howsoever shall constitute an abuse and defacing of the Naira or such note and shall be punishable under the law by fines or imprisonment or both.”

But it appears that this law only applies to a section of citizens, particularly those financially incapable of putting up a good fight against the government and cannot afford the services of competent lawyers to plead their defence.

With video evidence, Peoples Gazette has compiled a list of Nigerian elites found committing the same crime for which Bobrisky is now languishing in prison.

Minister of Arts and Culture, Hannatu Musanawa
Video footage captured President Bola Tinubu’s Minister of Arts and Culture, Hannatu Musanawa, spraying naira notes on a northern musician who performed at the ministerial inauguration party last August.

Ms Musanawa, draped in gold lace, was seen raining new N1000 notes on the artiste. Majority of her friends on the dance floor also celebrated the minister by showering her with wads of cash.

Against the CBN law, the naira notes fell on the dance floor and were marched.

SSS DG’s son Abba Bichi and Senator Ned Nwoko’s wife, Regina Daniels

While Nigerians grappled with a N20,000-limit on withdrawals due to naira scarcity in the last quarter of 2023, Abba Bichi, son of the directors general of the nation’s secret police, SSS, was seen raining wads of naira notes on Regina Daniels, fifth wife of Senator Ned Nwoko at a nightclub.

Senator Nwoko’s wife, Regina Daniels and mother, Rita Daniels
In another instance, Ms Daniels sprayed and stepped on the naira notes while celebrating her mother’s 47th birthday in 2023.

Ms Daniels donned a white silk long-sleeved blouse, blue jeans and a green Chanel purse as she sprayed the naira notes on her mother.

The Senator’s wife inadvertently marched the naira notes which covered the interlocking tiles of her mother’s compound.

The quantity of the notes was so large, a family member was seen using two hands to gather the money on the floor into a black briefcase.

Wizkid and KWAM 1
Grammy award-winning artiste, Ayo Balogun, who goes by Wizkid, lost his mother, Juliana Morayo Balogun, last year.

Mrs Balogun’s funeral had the who’s who of the Nigerian entertainment industry in attendance as celebrities gathered to commiserate with Wizkid and celebrate the life of his deceased mum.

They all made money rain.

Wizkid himself showered wads of N1000 naira notes on fuji maestro Wasiu Ayinde Marshal as did Tiwa Savage, another Nigerian pop artiste, who lavished naira notes on the fuji musician.

In another instance at the burial, the Grammy winner and his sisters were seen spraying the notes on each other.

Obi Cubana
Business mogul, Obi ‘Cubana’ Iyiegbu, organised a talk-of-the-town funeral for his deceased mother in July 2021 and money rained like a cascade of water.

The week-long funeral had at least 400 cows, 20 rams slaughtered for beef and served to guests in Oba, Anambra state where Mrs Iyiegbo was buried.

Money-spraying was so much that it became a competition among Obi Cubana’s friends to see who could spend the most money.

Videos on social media showed Obi Cubana standing in his living room and getting drenched in naira notes days before the burial.

Cubana Chief Priest
Pascal Chibuike Okechukwu, popularly called Cubana Chief Priest, is known for his lavish display of wealth on social media.

For every party he attends, Cubana Chief Priest must spray money and toss it in the air. It’s become his signature.

At the funeral of the late Mrs Iyiegbu, Cubana Chiefpriest held a stash of currency notes which he sprayed on his former boss, Obi Cubana.

The spraying got so intense that he switched from notes to bundles, placing them on Obi Cubana’s shoulders as he danced to an Igbo live band performance.

Still, EFCC operatives did not unleash nightmare on the celebrity barman as they did on Bobrisky.

Ms Pelumi Nubi
Pelumi Nubi, UK-Nigerian travel content creator who successfully drove from London to Lagos on a road trip that lasted 68 days, was welcomed amid pomp and circumstance by the Lagos state government including Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu and Commissioner for Arts and Tourism was appointed the tourism ambassador for Lagos state despite glaring evidence that she abused the naira at a party, showering currency notes on musician and hype man, Segun Johnson.

While Ms Nubi was given a heroic welcome with no mention of naira abuse charge, Bobrisky was sentenced to six months imprisonment without the option of a fine by Justice Abimbola Awogboro of the Lagos Division of the Federal High Court on Friday.

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