N60bn Budget Padding: Omisore Under Pressure To Name Senators, Reps Who Shared Cash
Detained Senator Iyiola Omisore is under pressure to name the beneficiaries of the N60 billion “budget padding” in the Sixth Assembly.
He has refused to name the Senators and House members, an Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) source said yesterday.
The former Osun State deputy governor, who is on “bed rest” at the EFCC clinic in Abuja, is said to be in a stable condition.
“He is in a stable condition, chatting and comparing notes freely with our investigating officers from the clinic,” the source added.
Another source said: “Instead of giving the details of budget padding in the 6th National Assembly between 2007 and 2011, Omisore told our operatives that ‘I will help you with the list of those behind 2016 budget padding.’ We said we are only working on the document on budget padding which we retrieved from his residence in Abuja.
“This, however, does not prevent us from going ahead with the ongoing probe of the padding as seen from the evidence in the document. We will crack this dimension to his case.”
Omisore was the chairman of the Appropriation Committee. The EFCC found in his Abuja home a document showing a N60 billion “strange” vote in the budget. Besides, he was reportedly paid N2.5 billion by the National Assembly’s management for undisclosed reasons.
Omisore was arrested in Abuja on July 3, for the N4.745 billion allegedly allocated to him and others by the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA).
Of the slush funds, about N1.310 billion was allegedly traced to Omisore and three companies.
Also yesterday, it was learnt that detectives will tomorrow question former Defence Minister (state) Mr. Musiliu Obanikoro’s Aide-de-Camp (ADC) over the N1.299billion flown to the Akure Airport for Ekiti State Governor Ayodele Fayose.
The EFCC has invited Lt. A.O Adewale of the Nigerian Navy for interrogation at its headquarters. He reportedly accompanied Obanikoro to deliver the cash, which was meant for the prosecution of the 2014 governorship election. The cash is believed to be from the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA), meant for the purchase of arms to fight Boko Haram.
Fayose’s associate, Abiodun Agbele, who allegedly collected the slush funds from the ex-minister, was said to have “cringed” when presented with some evidence.
The officer was on board a chartered aircraft with Registration No: HS125-800 5N-BMT belonging to Gyro Air Limited, which ferried the N1.299billion to Akure on June 17 and 18, 2014.
The EFCC invited Lt. Adewale last week but he asked to report tomorrow after getting clearance from the Navy.
A source said: “We are expecting him on Wednesday. Our team of investigators is on standby to interact with the naval officer who was the ADC to Obanikoro.
“We took time to invite him because investigation has not reached his own curve. Now, as a star witness to the movement and the modus operandi of the ex-minister, we need to hear from him.
“We are interested in his role in the movement of the cash to Fayose’s associate.”
Agbele, who is detained, was said to be worried after being shown some damning bank tellers, which he personally signed.
He was just “cringing”, the source added.
An EFCC Investigating Officer, Tosin Owobo, has told the Federal High Court sitting in Ado-Ekiti of how the N1, 299,490,000.00 was wired into Fayose’s accounts by Agbele.
Owobo, who swore to an affidavit, said: “That N1, 219,490,000 was conveyed to Akure Airport by Senator Obanikoro through a chartered aircraft with Registration No: HS125-800 5N-BMT belonging to Gyro Air Limited.”
“That on the 17th day of June, 2014 Mr. Alade Oluseye in the company of one Abiodun Agbele, a front of the Applicant(Fayose), went to the Akure Airport wherein they took cash delivery of the N724,500,000.00 from Senator Musiliu Obanikoro and his acclaimed Aide-de-Camp Lieutenant Colonel A.O. Adewale.
“That on the 18th day of June, 2014 N494, 990,000 was also delivered to Mr. Alade Oluseye by the said minister in the same manner.
“That N1, 219,490,000 was conveyed to Akure Airport by Senator Obanikoro through a chartered aircraft with Registration No: HS125-800 5N-BMT belonging to Gyro Air Limited.”