A one time former governor of the old Anambra State and chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Jim Nwobodo, on Monday, denied ever receiving money from the National Security Adviser (NSA) to former President Goodluck Jonathan, Colonel Sambo Dasuki (retd).
Nwobodo equally denied being part of the PDP chieftains that shared N3.05 billion through the former Minister of State, Bashir Yuguda.
The former governor said yesterday that though he was the zonal chairman of the PDP for the 2015 Presidential Election, the N500 million he got for the election was from the former National Chairman of the party, Dr Adamu Mu’azu and not from other sources.
Nwobodo further clarified that the money was also disbursed to the five states in the South-East geo-political zone through the state chairmen of the campaign committee, saying that he could not have queried his party chairman as to the sources of the campaign fund, which were strictly spent on the election as directed by the party.
He vehemently denied any personal knowledge or contact with Dasuki and Yuguda.
According to him, “in the first place, I don’t know Colonel Sambo Dasuki; I have never met him in person; I have never had any interaction with him. And I didn’t receive money from him. As for Yuguda, the then Minister of State for Finance, whose name was mentioned, I don’t know him. I think I only met him once and that’s all.”
He expressed reservation that it was unfair to bandy his name about in a manner that suggested he was a treasury looter, stressing that he had no regret working to see the PDP retain victory in the South-East zone at the polls .
“The party, during the general election, approved N500 million to be given to the South-East zone for the campaigns. We have five states and when those of us nominated from the South-East zone met, we were asked to choose a chairman and they chose me as their chairman,” he said.
According to him, “after series of meetings, it was agreed that the chairman of the party should make funds available to the committee to enable us start work in our respective states. They invited us to the residence of the National Chairman of the party, Dr Adamu Mu’azu, who handed over money to me for the zone, for the election.
“I invited the chairmen of each of the state campaign committee and we disbursed the money, with each state receiving N100 million each.
“It was not possible for us to ascertain where the money came from. We simply received money from our National Chairman and we did not ask for explanations pertaining to the source of the money; I don’t think it is our duty as party members to begin to query our chairman as to the source of money he was handing over to us for an election.
“For me, the money was handed over; it was disbursed and used for the purpose of the campaign. The money was given to the committee, not me; to the committee by the National Chairman, Mu’azu, at his residence.
“When the money was brought by the National Chairman, the state campaign committee chairmen came together and took their share of the money for the campaign. I am prepared to give out the names of all the people involved. We had three members for the committee for each state.
“All the states chairmen and members who received and disbursed the money are alive and they can be contacted. At no time did the NSA hand over any money to me; there is no such thing at all. I have never met the former NSA; I don’t know him.
“I have never seen where the national chairman of a party will give you money and you start asking him where the money came from. If I had been told the money came from illegitimate sources, I would not have touched the money. There is nothing between me and the then NSA; I only worked for the PDP.”
The former minister was said to have informed the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) that he gave a total of N600million cash to six chairmen of the Contact and Mobilisation Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the 2015 general election.
He listed the beneficiaries as Chief Bode George (South-West); Ambassador. Yerima Abdullahi (North-East); Dr Peter Odili (South-South); Alhaji Attahiru Bafarawa (North-West); Senator Jim Nwobodo (South-East); and Dr Ahmadu Ali (North-Central).