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From grace to grass …INTERPOL arrests Fidelity Bank GM; Frank Onumele



How his entanglement in NDDC fraud became his undoing

His rapid descent to infamy

Beyond the scandal, shame of his arrest

The quickest road to infamy is the ravenous one – the rapid slope, steep underfoot, with sudden turnings, invisible milestones, and no signposts. Ask Frank Onumele. Since the General Manager and Regional Head of Fidelity Bank, South Commercial, Rivers, Bayelsa, was arrested by the INTERPOL for fraud, he has sunk from his exalted image and careened the steep slope to infamy.

Onumele was arrested in London for allowing himself to become a conduit through which officials of the Niger Delta Development Company siphoned billions of Naira in Fidelity Bank. He has since been brought back to Nigeria to answer for his crimes.

There is no gainsaying his travail shows that under a shower of gold and filthy lucre, the iron will becomes penetrable, and even the most upright bastions of integrity may reel in the Augean stable of sludge and putrescent fiber.

Onumele is undoubtedly in the eye of the storm. Following his arrest, three ex-managing directors of the NDDC have been identified for arrest any time soon to equally answer to crimes committed during their tenure.

Recall that the government agency has been fraught with reports of monumental fraud which came to light last year,  perpetrated by the management staff of the agency since its establishment.

Over the years, about N6trillion has been fraudulently taken from the agency. Despite overwhelming evidence from probes, establishing outright theft, and the diversion of huge sums of money meant to transform the lives of the citizens of Niger Delta, no culprit has been prosecuted to date.

Established in 2000 as an interventionist agency to reduce poverty and foster development by providing access to health services, safe water, roads, tackle environmental degradation, among others, the NDDC has instead become a cesspit of fraud and official misconduct.



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