N115b loot: ex-Air chiefs, politicians top refund list

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Barely 24 hours after the confirmation of the recovery of about N115billion, According to thenationonlline, yesterday glimpsed a likely list of some of those behind the huge refund. They include some politically exposed persons, ex-military chiefs and some of those involved in the $115million poll bribery scandal.

Besides, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is said to be tracking about $3.9billion believed to have been stolen.

A Presidency source however said the government was not yet aware of the said $3.9billion.

The recovered cash includes the following: $3.1b from Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) accounts (the money was paid to the oil giant by the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Limited); $1m seized from a former Chief of Air Staff; National Broadcasting Commission (N10,061,172,600); another Chief of Air Staff(N2.3b); an ex-presidential aide (N900m); a businessman (N750m); an ex-governor of Delta State ($15m); an ex-Chief of Staff and others (N420m); and an ex-Minister (N140m); an ex-Military Administrator (N100m).

Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) officials in Oyo and Ogun (N359millon); a former Minister (N2m); a former state Speaker N1m and N580 million (£2 million) in jewelry, allegedly from a former minister.

An EFCC source said: “We cannot release the names of those affected because some of them are already on trial before the court. We do not want to take any prejudicial action. We have been advised against doing so.

“As soon as it is legally convenient, we will release the full list.”

Also yesterday, It was learnt that the EFCC was probing a former governor of Akwa Ibom State in connection with N450million which was allocated to the state out of the N23.29billion allegedly provided by former Minister of Petroleum Resources Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke. The cash is believed to have been for INEC officials as bribe to change the results of the 2015 presidential election.

The anti-graft agency had questioned a former Military Administrator of the state and others in connection with the bribe.

But during one of the interrogation sessions, one of the suspects said the ex-governor allegedly “deducted N150million out of the bribe sum for personal use”.

“We are likely to invite the ex-governor for interaction,” the EFCC source added.

But there were indications yesterday that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) was tracking about $3.9billion.

The said amount was allegedly not yet captured in the fact-sheet which was released to the public on Saturday by the Federal Government due to an outstanding reconciliation process.

The $3.9billion includes the $15million seized from former Delta State Governor James Ibori, who is serving term in the United Kingdom.

Other components are about $3.1billion intercepted in the accounts of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the Nigerian Liquified Natural Gas (NLNG), which was yet to be moved to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in line with the Treasury Single Account (TSA) policy.

A reliable source in the anti-graft commission, who spoke in confidence with our correspondent, said the list of recoveries issued out on Saturday might not be the final.

The source said: “The EFCC has also intercepted over $3.9billion, including those in the NNPC and NLNG accounts and put in the TSA account.

“This has not been captured yet. So, what we have on Saturday was certainly not the final list of recoveries.”

“Following a judgment of the Court of Appeal, a $15million recovered from ex-Governor James Ibori has been paid into the treasury too.

“We will soon make the breakdown available to Nigerians accordingly. This process is a continuous one .”

A top Presidency source said: “The affected $3.9billion is unknown to this government. The list of recoveries released to Nigerians on Saturday by the Minister of Information and Culture, Alh. Lai Mohammed, went through vetting and other checks before the announcement.

“Do you know the value of $3.2billion? If there is such money in the system, do you think we will go to AFDB for a loan of $1billion?

“I only hope you will get the figures right from whoever is giving the information. Some people have sent an online link to the government but the source only quoted a member of the House of Representatives.”

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