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Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace - Business - Nairaland

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Allen Onyema: U.S. Seizes $14 Million In Bank Accounts Linked To Air Peace Boss / Allen Onyema Indicted For Bank Fraud And Money Laundering In America / Meet Allen Onyema, Biography, Net Worth Of CEO Of Air Peace (2) (3) (4)

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Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by Whiteangel1234: 8:06am On Nov 26, 2019
When the news broke over the weekend that Allen Onyema had been indicted in the United States for multi-million dollar fraud, a question that echoed amongst Nigerians was how he moved from relative obscurity to become one of the biggest players in Nigeria’s aviation sector in just about half a decade.

Some commentators said the indictment buttressed their suspicion that Mr Onyema might be a fraudster like many Nigerian businessmen with unexplained wealth; while others rehashed old claims that he has been fronting for unscrupulous politicians who cornered public funds and invested the same through him.

Mr Onyema established Air Peace Limited in 2013, and by the end of 2018, it had gained the largest share in Nigeria’s domestic air travel, according to the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).

The airline also recorded tremendous breakthrough in foreign travels, flying to more countries in Asia, Europe and Africa than any other Nigerian commercial flights operator.

Earlier this year, the company announced it was expanding both its fleet and destinations, which would include Atlanta and Houston, and effectively asserted its place as a blue-chip entity in the Nigerian aviation industry.

A daunting indictment

But all that came raised more suspicion with the allegation Friday that the man behind the thriving airline had been involved in multiple layers of sharp practices spanning several years in the United States.

The U.S. Department of Justice said Mr Onyema was indicted by a grand jury on several counts of criminal charges bordering on identity theft, bank fraud and money laundering. Facing the charges alongside him is Ejiroghene Eghagha, Air Peace’s head of finance and administration.

The full indictment narrated how Mr Onyema, aided by his alleged accomplice Ms Eghagha, allegedly raised several letters of credit to buy the same planes he had already purchased and added to Air Peace’s fleet of commercial airliners in Nigeria.

Based on the dubious letters of credit, American banking giant Wells Fargo transferred more than $21 million to bank accounts of U.S.-based Springfield Aviation, a suspected shell company registered and controlled by Mr Onyema. Wells Fargo paid the money to Mr Onyema in a series of transactions between February 10, 2017 and February 20, 2018, court documents said.

Within hours after the indictment was made public, Mr Onyema released a statement pushing back strongly against the charges. He said he would vigorously defend his honour in court, but did not indicate whether or not he would be heading to the United States soon.

Based on the charges, American prosecutors have secured court warrants for the arrest of Messrs Onyema and Eghagha in the United States. Corresponding warrants have also been issued for Canadian authorities to detain both suspects should either or both of them be found there.

Financing Air Peace

Although a large section of Nigerian social media already expressed doubts about the veracity of American charges against Mr Onyema even before his rebuttal Saturday morning, many others withheld their support for the businessman because they felt the source of his wealth, especially how he acquired Air Peace, had been shrouded in secrecy.

“It is only in Nigeria that someone can become a billionaire overnight and you cannot unravel how he accumulated his wealth no matter how deep you dig,” business analyst, Osahon Ojigbede, told PREMIUM TIMES. “It is one of the reasons I have been very reluctant to go with those who say we should give Mr Onyema the benefit of the doubt.”

Mr Ojigbede said he was particularly gripped by a section of the indictment which said Mr Onyema established several non-profit organisations to move funds around in a manner typical of money laundering.

“Since he has said he would clear his name in court, I look forward to seeing how he plans to address charges of drafting fake purchase documents and using proceeds of non-profits to directly fund commercial businesses,” Mr Ojigbede said.

American authorities said Mr Onyema used about $3 million from his NGOs, including Foundation for Ethnic Harmony, International Centre for Non-Violence and Peace Development, All-Time Peace Media Communications Limited and Every Child Limited, to buy planes for Air Peace.

PREMIUM TIMES reached out repeatedly to Mr Onyema in the wake of the allegations, but he has yet to agree to be interviewed.

However, he briefly addressed how he raised funds to start Air Peace in an April 2017 interview with City People, an entertainment weekly based in Lagos.

In the interview, Mr Onyema expressed his ‘irritation’ about a perennial rumour that he had been fronting for Patience Jonathan in operating Air Peace, saying he had “never met” the former Nigerian First Lady in his life.

He said he grew up in Warri, but moved to Lagos shortly after graduating from the University of Ibadan and becoming a lawyer in 1989. When he moved to Lagos in 1990, he initially joined a law firm, where he worked for a few years before going into real estate.

It was in real estate that he said he became fortunate from selling lands in Lekki and other priced areas in the Nigerian commercial capital.

“By 2008, I was receiving about 18 per cent interest on my deposits. I was building estates from interest alone,” he told City People.

He said it was in 2008 that he discussed launching Air Peace with his wife, and getting a licence for the airline took several years with exhaustive efforts.

“I brought my finances into it (Air Peace) while getting support from the banks too,” Mr Onyema told the magazine.

“When I had gone halfway with the acquisition of my aircraft, I discovered that it was more than I thought. So I borrowed money from the banks.

“Fidelity Bank is there for anyone who cares to see. I pay the bank daily from sales. It is automatic,” Mr Onyema said.

Since then, Mr Onyema said Air Peace has become so successful that commercial banks can no longer pass on any opportunity to do business with it, even as he emphasised that the company was whole owned by him.

“I have integrity and every bank that knows my pedigree like Fidelity would readily do business with me,” Mr Onyema said. “I equally borrowed from Zenith but not as much as I did with Fidelity. This is how I set up my airline. For the record, I own Air Peace 100 per cent.”

In another interview with the Vanguard last October, Mr Onyema said Air Peace had a staff strength of 3,000, out of which about 2,000 are women. He spoke glowingly of the dedication of women on his staff, especially top officials like Ms Eghagha whose intelligence and energy he said keep the company flourishing.

Source: https://www.premiumtimesng.com/news/headlines/365090-how-i-made-my-fortune-to-start-air-peace-onyema.html

53 Likes 7 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by Rico96(m): 8:13am On Nov 26, 2019
Ipob
Owning a business as big a that 100% why won't you be question?
How you take make your money no concern us go and answer your case biko

32 Likes 4 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by voltron14: 8:16am On Nov 26, 2019
I sold land and made 18% profit on my deposits.

I own Air peace 100%.

And that is the end of the story.

190 Likes 13 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by popsy2(m): 8:18am On Nov 26, 2019
Okay

1 Like 3 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by Okoroawusa: 8:27am On Nov 26, 2019
Bro, making Nigerians believe you and your source of wealth is not a problem. The real problem is making the Americans believe you because I personally don't want anything to happen to Air Peace. So put your facts together and slug it out with those calling you a thief, a fraudster and an embezzler not just in Nigeria ( Nigerians will always give people names anyway) but most importantly the Americans because so many families's livelihood r tied to you n your business.

Thank you

346 Likes 19 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by voltron14: 8:27am On Nov 26, 2019
Not yet profitable

In the midst of these expansion plans is the simple fact that the airline has yet to become profitable. According to Onyema, Air Peace has lost over N1.2 billion ($3.3 million USD) in the last year just flying to coastal West African countries Africa such as Senegal, Gambia, Ghana, Sierra Leone and Liberia. He blames the loss on exorbitant charges


https://simpleflying.com/air-peace-expansion/

9 Likes 3 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by densiks: 8:31am On Nov 26, 2019
Allen thinks he’s talking to people without functional brains.

Setting up Air peace and running it to the current level is really commendable and is not a mean feat.

However trying to peddle falsehood under the guise of justifying how you raised money to start up the business is really unnecessary and indeed counter productive.

Focus on what needs to be done to keep forging ahead and leave the rest.

76 Likes 7 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by Whiteangel1234: 8:46am On Nov 26, 2019
densiks:
Allen thinks he’s talking to people without functional brains.

Setting up Air peace and running it to the current level is really commendable and is not a mean feat.

However trying to peddle falsehood under the guise of justifying how you raised money to start up the business is really unnecessary and indeed counter productive.

Focus on what needs to be done to keep forging ahead and leave the rest.

That is the Igbo Spirit of Business we can rise form selling pure Water to Billionaire through hard work

166 Likes 15 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by SoNature(m): 9:14am On Nov 26, 2019
Nigerians are some of the most complicated people I have ever come across.

I can't believe that houses can be so expensive in Lekki, a mini-island that is vulnerable to flooding.

From time to time, people's domestic properties float on water. Yet, others keep running to that axis to acquire property just to satisfy their esteem.

SMH

90 Likes 8 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by okeyglm: 9:57am On Nov 26, 2019
front page

1 Like 1 Share

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by nauto: 11:20am On Nov 26, 2019
ok
Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by RamseyBolton: 11:20am On Nov 26, 2019
Allen Onyefraud, go to US and answer your case. If you come out innocent, then I will doff my hat for you and use Air Peace till tomorrow. Untill then you are a fraudster and the pain of the un-alleviated people of Niger Delta will be on you.

31 Likes 6 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by seedsower(m): 11:20am On Nov 26, 2019
Correct
Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by OBAGADAFFI: 11:20am On Nov 26, 2019
“Fidelity Bank is there for anyone who cares to see. I pay the bank daily from sales. It is automatic,” Mr Onyema said

I think we should slow down on the issue.

There is now they can charge My Onyema without indicting the banks.

3 Likes

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by SaintHilary(m): 11:20am On Nov 26, 2019
You don't owe anyone an explanation sir!

Only a fool still thinks making legit money in this country is easy..If it is, those clowns claiming to make $5k weekly from forex trading and freelancing wont ask for 2,000 for training

Wealth is in the mouth of the Lion! Can you risk grabbing it

Y'all need to read The 50th Law so you know the world we currently live in!

150 Likes 11 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by NORSYK(m): 11:21am On Nov 26, 2019
Ok
Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by StrikeBack(m): 11:21am On Nov 26, 2019
Nonsense!
Balderdash, absolute garbage from lawma truck.


I also read somewhere on Obi Invictus "How I made money to start my coy"

Thieves

27 Likes 5 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by Dottore: 11:21am On Nov 26, 2019
Bro whether your story is true or not, whether you started from inflated contract figures or amnesty money. The truth is that you carved a niche for yourself by reinvesting in the country, creating thousands of job opportunities directly and indirectly as well as the uncommon charitable feat of saving hundreds of Nigerians from South Africa free of charge.

I am not supporting crime or the proceeds of crime but what can I say where all the governors and lawmakers past and present steal public funds with impunity with nothing to show for it.

As it is now, government owned Nigeria Airways is history known to only those born in the 70s. Air Peace is the only stable airline and recent probes have shown that Arik Air boss Arumimi Ikhide has cases to answer with EFCC so are many other entrepreneurs especially if you are not hobnobbing with the incumbent government.

If the government can grant amnesty to looters simply by joining APC let them find a way to save this guy and our dear Air Peace from sinking.

66 Likes 4 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by sotall(m): 11:22am On Nov 26, 2019
Oj
Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by paradigmshift(m): 11:22am On Nov 26, 2019
i stand with you...
fly airpeace.
nigerians are always quick to kill their own, hypocrites

35 Likes 2 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by chinavs9ja(m): 11:22am On Nov 26, 2019
Okay bro
Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by superior1: 11:23am On Nov 26, 2019
PR

A good place to start but he must look for means of getting the US case sorted out

1 Like

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by paradigmshift(m): 11:23am On Nov 26, 2019
[quote author=SoNature post=84373715]Nigerians are some of the most complicated people I have ever come across.

I can't believe that houses can be so expensive in Lekki, a mini-island that is vulnerable to flooding.

From time to time, people's domestic properties float on water. Yet, others keep running to that axis to acquire property just to satisfy their esteem.

SMH [/quote

u dey mind dem....

2 Likes

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by ainas247: 11:23am On Nov 26, 2019
wink If I am the one and I am 100% sure that I don't have cockroaches in my cupboard
I will sue the US

So sir, go and clear yourself.

If you have a business website
and you are not getting traffic try SEO
chat now

2 Likes 1 Share

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by paradigmshift(m): 11:23am On Nov 26, 2019
RamseyBolton:
Allen Onyefraud, go to US and answer your case. If you come out innocent, then I will doff my heart for you and use Air Peace till tomorrow. Untill then you are a fraudster and the pain of the un-alleviated people of Niger Delta will be on you.

another mad man

23 Likes

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by Bustincole(m): 11:23am On Nov 26, 2019
I tink dis story is not yet complete



#Just tinkin

7 Likes 1 Share

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by Rexnegro(m): 11:24am On Nov 26, 2019
good move but don't think this necessary to share when u are legit

1 Like

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by Esseite: 11:24am On Nov 26, 2019
When he moved to Lagos in 1990, he initially joined a law firm, where he worked for a few years before going into real estate.

It was in real estate that he said he became fortunate from selling lands in Lekki and other priced areas in the Nigerian commercial capital.

By 2008, I was receiving about 18 per cent interest on my deposits. I was building estates from interest alone,” he told City People.

Still some loopholes

A 20years old real estate company is supposed to be well known and grounded..

39 Likes 2 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by BlackfireX: 11:24am On Nov 26, 2019
10months ago innoson was called all sort of names.... Today all those keypad warriors have fizzled out...


Now onyema.



You will overcome.



Mark this post.

37 Likes

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by Nobody: 11:24am On Nov 26, 2019
sad May God bless we Christians and our Muslim brothers sad

3 Likes 1 Share

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by ednut1(m): 11:25am On Nov 26, 2019
Keep lying . Making loss but still buying jets

15 Likes 2 Shares

Re: Allen Onyema: How I Made My Money To Start Air Peace by itsme01: 11:25am On Nov 26, 2019
undecided


typical media hogwash with too much grammer and little sense


.

4 Likes 1 Share

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