The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, yesterday, questioned the spokesman of Goodluck Jonathan Campaign Organisation for hours, asking him to return the N840 million he allegedly received for the prosecution of the Presidential election last year, Vanguard reports.
Although the former minister had insisted that he got the money to do specific assignments given him by the former President, Vanguard learned that the EFCC asked him to produce the cash or nothing else. The agency is said to have produced evidence that the former Minister of Finance, Senator Esther Nenadi Usman, who also received N2.5 billion out of the N4 billion that was shared to them, had refunded N140 million, in addition to surrendering two palatial homes in Abuja, to secure her freedom.
The former minister, who was confronted with evidence of how he collected the huge sum drawn from the Central Bank of Nigeria, did not, however, deny receiving the money. A source close to him argued that the money was properly utilised for the intended purpose and that he did not see any justification for asking the former minister to refund the money already utilised.
The former minister, who arrived the EFCC headquarters on Formella Street, Wuse 2, at 9:45 am, was still being quizzed at 9 pm yesterday, although sources said he would be granted administrative bail on condition that he returned the money. Some of the conditions already set for the proposed bail included producing two sureties who must be serving directors in the federal civil service and who must be landlords in Abuja.
But there was no indication at the time of filing the report that any of the conditions had been met. It was likely that the commission would keep the former minister in its custody for sometime, going by similar cases in recent time. The former minister had decried the attempt by the agency to take him in earlier than Monday and had defied moves by its operatives to arrest him last weekend. The agency was yet to release any information on the former minister last night.