DSS Continues Siege On Sambo Dasuki’s Home Over $2bn Arms Deal
FOR the second day running, the Department of State Security Service (DSS) continued its siege to the residence of the former National Security Adviser, Mr. Sambo Dasuki.
Dasuki, who remained adamant not to accept DSS invitation, remained under house arrest at his residence for the second day running.
Other than the comfort of his residence, Dasuki cannot move out.
There were however indications that the battle might shift to the court on Monday as both parties were busy discussing with their lawyers yesterday.
Investigation revealed that operatives of DSS were still stationed at the residence of Dasuki to serve him a letter of invitation for an interaction with the Director-General of the agency.
While the operatives kept vigil at the gate of the exquisite mansion, Dasuki refused to come out to receive the letter of invitation.
A top source said: “The drama has continued in Dasuki’s house. Both the DSS and Dasuki are locked in endless vigil. The DSS insisted on Dasuki personally receiving the letter of invitation but the ex-NSA said it should be given to his aides.
“The tension over the letter peaked in Dasuki’s residence when an Assistant Director of DSS added the caveat that the former NSA must personally sign for it. Dasuki was said to be suspicious of appending his signature to any letter.
“It has been a ding-dong affair. The DSS does not want to invade Dasuki’s residence and the former NSA is under compulsory house arrest.
“Although some visitors had been coming to meet with Dasuki, they were usually subjected to thorough screening while leaving.
“The operatives have conducted their activities with decorum. No visitor or member of Dasuki’s household has been molested so far.
“A new dimension also crept into the matter. Dasuki said if he is wanted in connection with $2 billion arms deal, the invitation letter should not read an audience with the DG of SSS.
“He said the letter brought y the DSS and read to his aides indicated that he was wanted by the DSS DG and not the panel probing arms deal.
“Dasuki also said he cannot be isolated for investigation because the mandate given to the probe panel was from 2007 to 2015. He said many ministers, ex-NSAs, DGs of DSS, and military officers are under the scrutiny of the panel.
“Dasuki said he will only honour a letter of invitation by the panel or a warrant of arrest from a court.”
Meanwhile, there were indications at press time yesterday that both parties were seeking legal consultations on the next line of action.
Dasuki, who met with his lawyers yesterday, may return to court on Monday to give status report on the refusal of the DSS to allow him to travel abroad for treatment.
Another source said: “Dasuki’s counsel, Ahmed Raji (SAN), may go to court on Monday on the inability of his client to travel abroad for treatment. Dasuki may apply for a fresh order to enforce his fundamental human rights as a citizen.
“The DSS may also approach a court for an order to arrest Dasuki to compel the ex-NSA to honour the arms deal panel’s invitation.”
The Department of State Security Service (DSS) on Thursday said the former National Security Adviser (NSA), Sambo Dasuki was invited for fresh chat over $2 billion arms deal.
A statement by Mr. Tony Opuiyo for DSS accused Dasuki of refusal to appear before the panel probing the $2 billion arms transaction.
It said instead of Dasuki honouring the summons of the committee, he resorted to “grandstanding and subtle blackmail of the Service.”
The statement said: “The attention of the Department of State Services (DSS) has been brought to the report making the rounds that its operatives illegally blocked the residence of the former National Security Adviser (NSA), Sambo DASUKI (Col/Rtd), in violation of a subsisting court order granting him a relief to travel overseas for medical services.
“This is to say the least that such report is not only unfounded and malicious but aimed at tarnishing the good image of the Service.
“It may be recalled that Sambo was initially arrested and charged to court for unlawful possession of firearms and money laundering, for which reason his international passport was seized and on the order of the court, returned to the registrar for custody.
“What has however brought the seeming standoff between Sambo and the Service, despite the court-ordered release of his international passport on 4th November, 2015, is his refusal to appear before a Committee undertaking the investigation of an entirely different case.
“The public may wish to note that the government set up the Committee to investigate procurement processes relating to a two billion dollar ($2billion) arms transaction by the last administration, under which Sambo was the NSA.
“ It was on this premise that he was invited by the Committee to shed more light on his involvement in the deal. It, therefore, remains surprising and shocking that Sambo has refused to honour invitations of the Committee but instead resorts to grandstanding and subtle blackmail of the Service.
“His refusal to appear before the Committee has left the Service with no option but to adopt legal means to ensure his attendance.
“Therefore, without doubt, Sambo is pulling all strings available to him to evade justice and put the Service in bad light.
“The simple fact is that the DSS is not persecuting him. Nigerians are therefore enjoined to disregard the impression being created by him. This Service wishes to re-emphasise its commitment to the rule of law and strict adherence to democratic ideals.
“However, any person or group, no matter how highly placed, that may wish to test the will of the present democratic dispensation, will definitely be checked through the legal provisions of the law.”