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EFCC Recovers N6.66b From Alison-Madueke’s Campaign Spending

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Wednesday, May 25th, 2016
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Nigeria’s recovered loot has increased by at least N6.66 billion. The amount is part of the N23.3 billion ($115 million) election campaign bribe allegedly distributed by former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Deziani Alison-Madueke, through Fidelity Bank.

While the chief executives of Sterling Bank and Access Bank reportedly refunded N5 billion and $5 million (N1 billion) respectively, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has recovered N17 million from former Secretary to the Government of Bauchi State, Alhaji Ahmed Ibrahim Dandija, and two others from the state.

It also reportedly recovered N49 million from Fidelity Bank. The amount is said to be the profit the bank made for helping Alison-Madueke to share the $115 million to designated people in the country. The aggregate of these recovered funds is N6.66 billion while N16.64billion is yet to be recovered.

The $115 million which was allegedly used to bribe Independent National Electoral commission (INEC) officials as well as the then ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) members nationwide, was given to Fidelity Bank by the former minister, who is currently being investigated in the United Kingdom on money laundering and corruption charges.

She was said to have sourced $88 million from some oil companies while she contributed N26 million. She was said to have used four companies to deposit the money into the bank, with the mandate that the bank distributes it nationwide.So far, N6.66 billion of the fund has been recovered while the EFCC continues investigation to recover the remaining fund.

Meanwhile, the Senate yesterday uncovered N447.42 billion fraud committed by past administration on import duty waivers, concessions and grants by different Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of government from 2011 to 2015.

Presenting the report, Chairman, Senate Adhoc Committee on Import Duty Waivers, Concessions and Grants, Senator Adamu Aliero (APC, Kebbi Central) said the report was a follow-up to a motion moved on the floor of the Senate in January this year. The Senate had subsequently set up an adhoc committee to investigate the claims in the motion and report back to it within a specified time.

The EFCC said that it released suspended Director General of the Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD), Nelly Mayshak and former aide to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, Warimopei Dudafa, yesterday.

Both were arrested around the same time in April for alleged corruption. While Mayshak was arrested on April 18 for alleged N2.5 billion fraud Dudafa who is connected with N10 billion funds from the Office of the National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki. He was arrested on April 19.

The commission revealed on Monday that former Secretary to Bauchi State Government, Alhaji Ahmed Ibrahim Dandija, and two others have refunded an aggregate of N17 million they allegedly received from the $115 million campaign fund.

Two other personalities who made refunds are former chairman of the PDP in Gombe State, Nuhu Poloma and the Zonal Coordinator of the party in Gombe, Taraba and Adamawa states, Bunu Mulima. While Dandija returned N10 million, Poloma and Mulima refunded N2 million and N5 million respectively.

“Dandija admitted in a written statement that N20 million passed through his hands to some other beneficiaries but accepted liability for the refund of the whole sum. He promised to bring another bank draft for the balance of N10million today,” an operative said on Monday but it is yet to be confirmed if Dandija has made good his promise.

Others who are still being investigated on the Alison-Madueke’s campaign funds are former governor of Zamfara State, Mamuda Aliyu Shinkafi who was arrested last week. He allegedly received N15 million from the N450 million. The sharing of the N450 million was allegedly supervised by former minister of state, Bashir Yuguda.

Aside from Yuguda and Shinkafi, Hassan Muhammed Nasiha, former senator and PDP chairman, Zamfara State, and his executives are also alleged to have benefited N5 million from the N450 million.

Other beneficiaries, as revealed by Shinkafi are 13 Zamfara Local Government Councils, which got N26 million each totalling N338 million, Gusau Local Government Council being the state capital N46 million, House of Representative member Bello Matawalle N10 million, Senator Sahabi Ya’u N5million, Malami Aliyu Yen Doto, the PDP deputy governorship candidate in the 2015 poll N5 million, Biliya Shinkafi N5 million, Sani Birnin Magaji N5 million, party executives N5 million, printing of party tag N6 million and Committee of Party Supervisors N10 million.

Also, a former Secretary to Bauchi State Government, Alhaji Ahmed Ibrahim, former Personal Assistant to ex-governor Isa Yuguda, Alhaji Sanusi Mohammed Isa, and Secretary of PDP in the state, Alhaji Salisu Garba have been arrested and quizzed by the EFCC over the funds. The suspects are alleged to have collected N500 million out of the money.

The list of those who have been grilled in connection with the scam also include former governors Liyel Imoke, Ibrahim Shekarau, Ramalan Yero, Achike Udenwa and Ibrahim Shema. Former ministers have also been quizzed. Former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Bashir Aminu Wali and former Minister of State II for Foreign Affairs, Dr. Nurudeen Muhammad have been quizzed. Others are officials of INEC and officials of the PDP as well as Senator Chris Anyanwu and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Michael Ahamba. The senator and the SAN have denied involvement in sharing of the money. Achike Udenwa also denied receiving the money. It is also not clear if any recoveries have been made from any of the accused persons.

Last Thursday, the immediate past governor of Delta State, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan was implicated in the $115million election fund scandal. He is allegedly involved to the tune of N450 million.

The money was allegedly received by the Delta State Commissioner of Finance, Chief David Edevbie, former PDP Chairman of the State, Chief Edwin Uzor and Chief Ndidi Elumelu, a former member of House of Representatives on the instruction of the former governor.

In connection to the $115million, the commission also interrogated a former Deputy Governor of Edo State, Chief Lucky Imasuen and former Secretary to the State Government of Edo State, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu. They are alleged to have collected N700 million of the fund through the Mission Road branch of Fidelity Bank Plc, in Benin- City. The transaction allegedly took place in March 2015.

Former governor of Katsina State, Ibrahim Shema allegedly received N700 million from the N23.3billion campaign funds. According to the EFCC, Shema allegedly authorised a former Minister of Mines and Steel, Musa Muhammad Sada, to receive the money on his behalf for the state.

The N700 million allegedly got by Shema is likely to be part of the N5 billion allegedly got by the north west from the campaign funds connected to Alison-Deziani.

Also, a former Minister of State for Agriculture, Asabe Asmau Ahmed, from Niger State, revealed how she personally signed and collected the sum of N450 million.

“Ahmed also stated that she kept the sum of N105million for herself,” spokesman Wilson Uwujaren said, adding that Ahmed further alleged that the balance was given to top PDP officials in the state.

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