The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has urged former president Goodluck Jonathan to speak out on the controversial $2.1bn meant for the purchase of arms to fight the Boko Haram sect but which was allegedly shared by some influential politicians.
According to the party, the controversy surrounding the sharing of the money by Sambo Dasuki, the former national security adviser (NSA), should have attracted Jonathan’s attention by now.
The Punch reports that Alhaji Abdulahi Jalo, the deputy national publicity secretary of the PDP, appealed to the ex-president at a press briefing on Monday, January 11, in Abuja.
Jalo said that Jonathan should clear the air and tell Nigerians whether he authorized the sharing of the money meant to fight insurgency in the country. He also stressed that those who took part in the sharing of the money should refund it.
“As all of you know, no single kobo can be spent by the federal government without an act of the National Assembly.
“Money earmarked for arms purchase, some people diverted it to something else. So many people that you cannot even expect were involved. Now, darkness has come to light.
“Jonathan is alive, he should clarify whether he asked the National Security Adviser to divert money meant to fight Boko Haram into his campaign.
“I’m from the North-East and I know the terrible security situation our people are facing there. The money was meant to fight Boko Haram, and we all know that you can’t rule without peace. Now darkness has given way for the light.”
“It was not only members of the PDP that shared the money; members of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, Accord Party and the Social Democratic Party, among others, also shared. At least, Chief Olu Falae is not a member of the PDP.
“All of them should return the money. Then, (former) President Jonathan must speak on it. He is still alive. Has he ever said anything like this to Dasuki, ‘go and take from the money meant for the war against Boko Haram and share for my campaign’? It is time for him to speak up,” he said.
The deputy national publicity secretary further recalled that the PDP held a fundraising dinner for Jonathan’s presidential campaign during which more than N20bn was realized. He challenged the beneficiaries of the money from Dasuki to explain how the party benefitted from such money.
“We are not fools. Money meant for the party’s campaign was given to the chairman of our party. We had a dinner, where billions of money was realised and this money was for the campaign. We said so and Nigerians were aware.
“We thank God that all those who took money used their private accounts and companies to get that. What has this got to do with the PDP?
“Haliru Bello did a contract with the office of Sambo Dasuki to the tune of N600m with his company’s name, not PDP,” he noted.
Speaking about Olisa Metuh, the national publicity secretary of the PDP, who has been recently taken to the custody by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Jalo said:
“His company allegedly had transactions with the office of National Security Adviser. So, what is PDP’s business with that?
“We want those people that have been accused to shed more light, whether they were given the money to campaign for Jonathan.
“Did they bring the money to the party national secretariat? PDP has nothing to do with individuals that used their companies to do contracts with National Security Adviser.
“Those who have been accused to have collected money from the office of the NSA should come and tell Nigerians how they used the money for the party.
“PDP has no company. It is not a private company. It is a political party. Was this money paid into the party account? No. So, these people are ‘on their own’.”
Jalo noted that all the recipients of the money from the office of the NSA must have asked where the money was coming from. Because of their ignorance all Nigerians are looking at every member of the PDP as criminals, he added.
He also wondered why some prominent members of the party still remain quiet since the scandal broke out.
Ibrahim Magu, the chairman of the EFCC, has recently explained why Goodluck Jonathan has not been arrested over $2.1 billion arms deal.
He said that no document has been traced to the former president giving any approval for the disbursement of the money for any other purpose than arms purchase.