$2.1bn Arms Deal: Group says Jonathan preparing defence statement

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Goodluck Jonathan, Nigeria's president, pauses during a session on the opening day of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, on Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014. World leaders, influential executives, bankers and policy makers attend the 44th annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, the five day event runs from Jan. 22-25. Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders (CACOL) has said the comments of former President Jonathan about the allegations against his former National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd), was a way of preparing for his own defence when he was eventually called to question.

Jonathan had expressed disbelief against the allegation against Dasuki while giving a lecture at the Oxford Union in the United Kingdom.

He said, “They said the National Security Adviser (Sambo Dasuki) stole $2.2bn. I don’t believe somebody can just steal $2.2bn.

“We bought warships, we bought aircraft, we bought lots of weapons for the Army and so on and so forth and you are still saying $2.2bn (was stolen). So, where did we get the money to buy all those things?”

But the Executive Chairman of CACOL, Mr. Debo Adeniran, said the former President’s comments were expected.

Adeniran said, “I am not surprised that the former President made such a statement because he has always demonstrated his ignorance of how much malfeasance took place under his watch.

“He was the chief accounting officer of that regime and believe that all fingers are pointing in his direction, because most of those that have confessed to sharing in the loot have mentioned one way or the other that he (Jonathan) gave approval for the money they expended, the latest of which is Obanikoro and Fani-Kayode.

“He knew that eventually, it will get to him, that was why he was saying that it was not possible for Dasuki to steal $2.1bn, even when he saw people moving more than $9m to South Africa under a non-conventional guise for buying arms and he saw the revelations that even some of his ministers went away with more than $20bn.

“He was just saying that to prepare the ground for his own defence, maybe, when eventually he is called to answer questions. Basically, it’s just a kind of drowning man clutching to the available straw.”

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