EFCC: No evidence that N1.6b was transferred to Jonathan’s church

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Tuesday said there was no evidence that ex-President Gooluck Jonathan’s former aide Dr Waripamo-Owei Dudafa transferred part of the N1.6billion he was accused of concealing to a church.
It said contrary to Dudafa’s claim, the money was actually transferred to his company.
Dudafa had claimed on Monday in his evidence-in-chief that the money was raised for a church courtesy of former President Jonathan.
He had said: “From my interactions with former President Goodluck Jonathan, I know that the funds were proceeds of a launching by the Anglican Communion of Otuoke community for the building of St. Stephens Youth Development Centre, Otuoke.
“The launching, which was done in Lagos on the 16th of March, 2013, was organised by the former president as a member of the Anglican Communion and the grand patron.”
But during cross examination on Tuesday, prosecuting counsel Rotimi Oyedepo dared Dudafa to show evidence that any part of the N1.6billion lodged in the Heritage Bank account of Avalon Global Property Development Company Limited was transferred to the church.
But, Dudafa said only Jonathan could explain.
Oyedepo showed Dudafa the statement of account and asked him indicate if there was any money transferred to the church.
Dudafa said: “From Exhibit B (the account statement), no fund was transferred to the Anglican Communion of Otuoke Community. I can’t see it.
“It couldn’t have been because only the former President could have given directive on what to do.”
Asked to name the Bishop of the Anglican Communion of Otuoke Community, Dudafa said: “I don’t know; I only related with the former President.”
Oyedepo pointed out from the statement of account that N30million was transferred on November 25, 2013 to The Jakes Fast Food and Restaurant, in which Dudafa had the highest share and which he also chaired.
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The EFCC lawyer also showed Dudafa the statement of account of The Jakes Fast Food and Restaurant with the Guarantee Trust Bank.
“It is correct that as of today, the funds that are in the account of The Jakes, paid by a Bureau De Change operator, Murtala Bashir, is in excess of N500millio,” Oyedepo said.
Oyedepo also pointed out that N30million was transferred between December 21 and 22, 2015 to the law firm of Mr Habila Sylvanus, who is an uncle to Dudafa, among others.
Dudafa denied having anything to do with the Office of National Security Adviser or Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
Led in evidence by his lawyer Mr. Gboyega Oyewole (SAN), Dudafa said he never had any interaction with former National Security Adviser Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd).
He said his failure to fill the Assets Declaration form at the EFCC while being detained was due to the commission’s refusal to state the nature of his offence.
He added that he did to fill the Asset Declaration form because he was not a public officer as he was not paid salary from the public accounts.
He said: “I did not conspire to conceal any money, as the sources of the money are clear. I had no intention whatsoever to hide anything,” he said.
Dudafa claimed that he ran De Jakes Fast Food even before his appointment by the former President, and that the company’s daily turnover between 2005 and 2011 was between N5million to N7 million daily.
The EFCC arraigned Dudafa and a banker Iwejuo Joseph Nna on June 11, 2016 on a 23-count charge of conspiracy to conceal proceeds of crime amounting to N1.6 billion.
EFCC said they used different companies to launder the money between June 2013 and June 2015.
Justice Mohammed Idris adjourned until Friday.