The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has quizzed the Director of Finance of the Goodluck Jonathan Organisation, Senator Nenadi Usman, for her alleged role in the N23bn ($115m) allegedly shared by the then Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke, during the build-up to the 2015 presidential election.
The commission also traced the payment of N1.85bn to two former governors and three senators from the Diezani funds.
According to the EFCC, Usman was quizzed at the Gombe zonal office on August 1, 2016, over the billions of naira that was shared in all the states across the North-East through her for the re-election of former President Jonathan.
Usman was quoted as telling the EFCC during interrogation that she met Diezani shortly before the election and the ex-minister gave her a paper containing a specific amount of money to be given to each states of the federation and directed her as the director of finance to contact and send all the representatives of every state to go to Fidelity Bank and collect the campaign slush funds so as to deliver victory for the Peoples Democratic Party across the country.
The anti-graft agency added, “The former DG, Nenadi, told the zonal office of the commission that Bauchi State got N500m through Senator Babayo Garba; Gombe State got N450m through Senator Saidu Kumo; Adamawa State got N450m through former governor James Ngilari while Taraba State collected the same N450m through the former acting governor of the state, Sani Danladi; and Senator Joel Ikenya.
“Usman admitted to the EFCC that she did not know the source of the funds as she claimed that Diezani collected the paper that contained the details of the amount but said she had reported to the head office of the EFCC in Abuja, Kano, Lagos and Gombe zonal offices of the commission to clarify how the multi-billion naira campaign bribe money was shared to the bigwigs of the PDP across the country.”
Usman has since been granted administrative bail by the Gombe zonal office of the commission pending the full investigation of the matter.
All attempts to speak with Usman proved abortive as calls placed to her phone were rejected while a text message was not responded to as of press time
Apart from the fresh scandal, the EFCC had last month arraigned Usman and a former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, on 17 counts of unlawful retention, unlawful use and unlawful payment of money to the tune of N4.9bn.
Usman, as the director of Jonathan’s campaign finances, allegedly received over N4bn from the imprest account of the Office of the National Security Adviser under the leadership of the then NSA, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.)
Authorities of the anti-graft commission said out of the money, the Director of Publicity of the organisation, Fani-Kayode, received N840m through his Zenith Bank account, Maitama branch with number 1004735721 on February 19, 2015.
The detectives said a former Secretary to the Government of the Federation and the National Chairman of the Social Democratic Party, Chief Olu Falae, received N100m through a company, Marreco Limited, where he is Chairman. The money was credited into the company’s United Bank for Africa Plc account No. 1000627022 on March 25, 2014.
A former Governor of Imo State, Achike Udenwa, and a former Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Viola Onwuliri, according to the documents, got N350m in two tranches. The first tranche of N150m was paid into their joint account with Zenith Bank on January 13, 2015. The second tranche of N200m was credited into their account with Diamond bank.