Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Arms Deal Saga: Group Attacks Former President Goodluck Jonathan

Updated 26 October, 2016
A civil society organization has lambasted Nigeria’s former president Goodluck Jonathan over comments he made on $2.1 billion arms deal. 

The Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders (CACOL) said the former president was only making effort to prepare his own defense. 

The group said the former president would eventually be called to answer for his own deedsA civil society group, has lambasted the former president of Nigeria Goodluck Jonathan for defending Sambo Dasuki on the arms deal saga. 

The Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders (CACOL) said the former president was only making effort to prepare his own defense. 

While speaking at the Oxford University in United Kingdom on Monday, October 24, Jonathan said it was hard for him to believe the allegations against Dasuki, a former national security adviser of Nigeria.

Dasuki is currently facing criminal charges bordering on abuse of public office, misuse of public funds and money laundering to the tune of $2.1 billion. The funds, the EFCC alleged was transferred from the account of the Office of the National Security adviser through the Central Bank of Nigeria to various individuals for personal and 2015 presidential campaign purposes. 

However, during his speech at the Oxford’s, Jonathan said: “They said the National Security Adviser (Sambo Dasuki) stole $2.2bn. I don’t believe somebody can just steal $2.2bn.” 

‘‘We bought warships, we bought aircraft, we bought lots of weapons for the Army and so on and so forth and you are still saying $2.2bn (was stolen). So, where did we get the money to buy all those things?” the former president had asked. 

But in a statement on Wednesday, October 26, the executive chairman of CACOL Debo Adeniran said he is not surprised at the defence given by Jonathan.

Adeniran said it was not impossible for the former president to make such remarks as he only showcased the level of ignorance of happenings under his command. 

Adeniran said: “He was the chief accounting officer of that regime and believe that all fingers are pointing in his direction, because most of those that have confessed to sharing in the loot have mentioned one way or the other that he (Jonathan) gave approval for the money they expended, the latest of which is Obanikoro and Fani-Kayode.” 

“He knew that eventually, it will get to him, that was why he was saying that it was not possible for Dasuki to steal $2.1bn, even when he saw people moving more than $9m to South Africa under a non-conventional guise for buying arms and he saw the revelations that even some of his ministers went away with more than $20bn,” he said. 

“He was just saying that to prepare the ground for his own defence, maybe, when eventually he is called to answer questions. Basically, it’s just a kind of drowning man clutching to the available straw,” CACOL added. Meanwhile, the federal government has consolidated all the charges against the former national security adviser. He is expected to be re-arraigned before and Abuja High Court in November to take fresh pleas on the charges against him. 

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