Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo state has advised the federal government to prosecute former president Goodluck Jonathan and immediate past finance minister, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.
This is coming following the arrest of the former national security adviser Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd) by the Department of State Security (DSS) yesterday, December 1, in the on-going arms deal investigation.
According to Oshiomhole, Jonathan and Okonjo-Iweala should be prosecuted since it had been established that they made approvals for which billions of dollars released for the procurement of arms for counter-terrorism operations under Jonathan, Leadership reports.
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Speaking in an interview with the media organization, Oshiomhole said that both Jonathan and Okonjo-Iweala should be prosecuted after Dasuki’s disclosure of receiving an extra-budgetary allocation of $2.1 billion from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) within nine months following the approval of Jonathan.
The Edo state governor further suggested that the Nigerian constitution does not empower the president to spend money not appropriated by the National Assembly, hence, his demand for Jonathan’s prosecution.
He said: “The issue is whether the Nigerian President under the constitution has the power to approve funds belonging to local, state and federal government- funds that have not been appropriated by the National Assembly. That is a criminal offense for which Okonjo-Iweala ought to face criminal prosecution. These things are just discussed and wished away. For me, I will stick for the truth and don’t care what people will say.”
Citing the Money Laundering Act which states that if one takes cash in excess of N5 million transaction, it is money laundering and it is criminal, Oshiomhole said: “Talking about revelation, look at the letter credited to Dasuki – the immediate past National Security Adviser. In his defence which I read in your paper, he seems to admit that money was spent but it was approved by the President. Does the Nigerian constitution empower the President to spend money which has not been appropriated by the National Assembly? And they took cash from the CBN. The Money Laundering Act says if you take cash in excess of N5 million transaction, it is money laundering and it is criminal.
“So, by Dasuki’s letter, he has also confirmed that Okonjo-Iweala is a privy to spending money never appropriated and therefore criminal, and that cash were being moved contrary to the money laundering act. Just using Dasuki’s own defence, you can see a case of conspiracy has been established between Dasuki, Okonjo-Iweala and all those involved in that transaction.”
Dasuki was reportedly picked up from his home this morning, December 1, by the DSS. Sources told naij.com he was taken to the DSS office in Abuja.
The operatives reportedly ordered the former security chief out of his residence and drove him away amidst tight security cover.
The embattled former National Security Adviser is standing trial on a five-count charge of money laundering and illegal possession of firearms.
His Abuja residence has been under siege by operatives of the DSS who placed him under house arrest despite a court order by the Federal High Court granting the retired colonel a request for his passport to be released, to enable him receive treatment abroad.