The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has been barred from investigating a private jet loaded with money on February 15, 2019, the eve of the aborted presidential and National Assembly elections, Saturday PUNCH learnt on Friday.
Our correspondent gathered that the plane which turned into billed to fly to Ilorin, Kwara State, from Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos didn’t take off due to the weight of the cash on board.
Multiple sources stated the EFCC operatives thereafter stormed the plane after a tip-off from a few people about the shipment. They demanded the source of the cash, its owner and destination.
The team became stated to have informed the operatives that the money become intended for election charges in Kwara State, but the detectives reportedly insisted on doing away with the cash haul.
Our resources stated, “The EFCC operatives interrogated the group and they claimed they had been a part of the authorities. They additionally gave a code which they assumed the operatives would recognize, but the detectives insisted on eliminating the cash.
“However, a smartphone call got here from the Presidential Villa ordering them to hands off the problem and clean off from the scene. Shortly after, armed infantrymen took over the scene and the money was transferred into every other plane which took off with the aid of 10pm that night time.”
The Public Relations Officer, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, Mrs Henrietta Yakubu, couldn’t be reached for remarks on the plane involved inside the cash movement as she did no longer reply to calls to her telephone. She had but to respond to a text message as of the time of filing this file.
In his response, the acting EFCC spokesman, Tony Orilade, virtually explained that he saw the alleged photograph of the said aircraft being shared on the social media, noting that it may had been ‘created and recreated.’
He stated, “On the plane-load of cash you asked about, I noticed the pix and we understand that those photographs are matters that may be manipulated to acquire the functions with the aid of their manufacturers. All the reports from the sphere are being reviewed and we will pop out with our function as soon as it is prepared.”
Orilade delivered, “Let’s now not be carried away through the sports of mischief-makers; just like the performing EFCC Chairman, Ibrahim Magu said, we shall maintain to do the right thing to make Nigeria a higher us of a for all of us.”
Meanwhile, findings have indicated that the EFCC won’t check out the movement of massive cash in two bullion vehicles by a leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, on the eve of the elections.
Although Tinubu admitted in an interview with reporters in Lagos that he transported the majority cash into his Ikoyi house that is a violation of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, it turned into accrued that the anti-graft organization had no plan to probe the incident.
When asked about the cash, the previous governor said, “What is your problem with bullion trucks in my residence? I actually have no longer executed any government business inside the remaining 5 years. So I didn’t thieve government money.
“And the bullion van became not stated to incorporate election materials, so what offence have I devoted? I determine wherein to keep it (money) and a way to keep it.”
But whilst confronted about the problem, the EFCC spokesman stated the anti-graft commission had successfully curbed vote-buying inside the elections and avoided a repeat of the incidents in Ekiti and Osun governorship elections.
“You will trust me that to a big volume, we had been able to curtail vote-buying with our men conspicuously located at polling cubicles throughout the u . S . A . Within the course of the elections,” he stated.
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