Former Jonathan’s Aide Explains How N1.6 Billion Was Traced To His Account
Waripamo-Owei Dudafa, a former domestic aide to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, says the N1.6 billion traced to his account by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), was money realised for a church building launching.
Dudafa said this on Monday when he opened his defence in his ongoing corruption trial before Justice M.B. Idris of the Federal High Court, Lagos. He was first arraigned in 2016 alongside one Iwejuo Joseph Nna, a bank official, and Sombre Omeibi, who was said to be at large.
Also, three companies were included in the charge, namely: Pluto Property and Investment Company Limited, Seagate Property Development and Investment Company Limited, and Trans Ocean Property and Investment Company Limited.
Dudafa, on Monday, narrated that the N1.6 billion traced to him was part of a total sum of N6 billion raised for the building St. Stephen’s Youth Development Centre, a project that was being undertaken by the Anglican Church of Otuoke community, Jonathan’s hometown. He said the launching was organised by Jonathan who is a grand patron of the Anglican church in his hometown.
“From my interactions with former president Goodluck Jonathan, I know that the funds were proceeds of a launching that was conducted by the Anglican Communion of Otuoke community for the building of St. Stephen’s Youth Development Centre, Otuoke,” Dudafa was quoted by Premium Times as saying at the court on Monday.
“About N6 billion was realised from the event. Several persons made various donations in cash and in pledges at the event while the chief launcher, Prince Arthur Eze, donated $10 million (about N1.8 billion).
“When Prince Eze started redeeming his pledge in piece-meal, the former president directed that I should get somebody in the private sector that will be able to keep the fund.
“I then brought in a friend, Somprie Omiebi, who later opened an account with a bank in Bayelsa. The naira denominated account was opened to receive Prince Eze’s money.
“Anytime Prince Eze brought any money, the former president will direct that I link up with a Bureau De Change (BDC) operator who will remit the money directly to the account opened by Somprie Omiebi.”
Dudafa denied having anything to do with the companies that were included as defendants in the suit, saying he was not a director in any of the companies and was not a signatory to their accounts.
“I know Somprie Omiebi as someone in the private sector that brought those accounts and the companies to the former president and his wife for the safekeeping of their money. Omiebi is the only person that knows the details of the various accounts.”
Dudafais also facing another N5.1 billion corruption charge before Justice Mohammaed Idris of the same Federal High Court, Lagos.
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