Who got the N750 million nomination bribe that has caused a huge scandal in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)?
Two key officials of the ruling party’s National Working Committee (NWC) fingered in the deal are said to be on the run.
A manhunt has begun for them as the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) cast its net wide to recover the cash.
House of Representatives member Ndudi Elumelu was said to have given the cash to win the party’s Delta State governorship ticket.
An Abuja billionaire, who collected the money from Elumelu, is in police custody.
He is said to be a friend of a PDP National Vice Chairman and son-in-law of a former Minister of Aviation.
The suspect was arrested last Friday and some exotic cars were taken away from his Abuja home.
While EFCC is looking into Elumelu’s petition, more aspirants have volunteered to testify on the huge cash-for- nomination deals during PDP’s primaries.
Elumelu petitioned EFCC when he could not get the party’s governorship ticket.
A source in EFCC said: “So far, we have been able to get clues that two members of the NWC of PDP had direct link with the collection and disbursement of the N750 million.
“We have their names and we may invite them for interrogation any moment from now. The suspect said he was just helping a friend and the money was handed over to some NWC members.
“It is too early to prejudge the affected NWC members. But when we invite them, we will let you know.
“But the suspect is still with us giving vital information on how he tried to help Elumelu as a friend.”
As of press time, the affected NWC members were trying to wield influence to resolve the matter amicably.
A party source said: “There is tension everywhere, the NWC members are calling for amicable resolution of the issue at stake.
“They do not want anything that can affect the image of the party. I think they want to refund the cash quietly to avoid any backlash on the party and their political career.
“I think the luck with Ndudi Elumelu is that he is from a well-connected family which will make cheating him difficult”.
Findings also revealed that a chartered jet was also on standby for some of those behind the deal in order to get the governorship ticket for Elumelu.
Another source added: “They embarked on many shuttles with a chartered jet during the transaction.
“The N750million deal was one of the reasons why Tony Obuh, the hitherto anointed candidate of the Governor of Delta State, Emmanuel Uduaghan lost out.
“To some extent, those who collected the cash assisted in scheming out Obuh from the race. But they could not rout out the party’s eventual governorship candidate, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, whom they did not know had been a friend of the National Chairman of PDP, Alhaji Adamu Muazu, for many years.
“They really cheated Uduaghan without knowing that they were digging their graves.”
Other aggrieved aspirants are also seeking their pounds of flesh. They are said to be ready to squeal on how some PDP leaders negotiated nomination deals with them.
A third source said: “Since this incident became public knowledge, more aspirants have volunteered to go to EFCC with more information about the activities of the Screening, Electoral Committees and Appeal Committees.
“You could see that during the primaries, some aspirants were disqualified but miraculously they were cleared again.
“Some said they parted with huge sums without getting the party’s tickets for offices aspired to.
“They said they have records of how the monies were paid or wired. I think there will be more revelations in the days ahead.”