Ikpe claimed that the Office of the National Security Adviser in May 2014 paid Azibaola the sum of $40m from the $1.2bn approved by Jonathan.
The investigator, David Ikpe, who stands as the 11th prosecution witness of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, made this known at the Federal High Court in Abuja on Thursday, November 30, 2017.
Ikpe claimed that the Office of the National Security Adviser in May 2014 paid Azibaola the sum of $40m from the $1.2bn approved by the ex-President.
Ikpe said, “In March 2014, the then NSA, Sambo Dasuki, wrote a memo to the President titled, ‘Intervention on urgent national security project’ in which he sought the approval of Mr. President for $1bn to handle a number of sub-heads including unmanned area or pipeline monitoring installations.
“The NSA made an additional request for $250m in April 2014.
“The President gave approval to his request.
“The President approved the release of $1.2bn to the NSA for the purpose it was sought.
“In May 2014, the sum of $1.2bn was then released from the NNPC account under the title ‘intervention on urgent national security project.’”
Continuing, the investigator admitted that Azibaola was not the only one paid from the $1.2bn released by the NNPC saying “It was this fund that was disbursed to the various recipients.
“I confirmed that the $40m was part of the $1.2bn released by the President for urgent national security intervention project.”
When asked if he interviewed Dasuki, being the man at the centre or obtained his statement in the course of the investigation, Ikpe said he did not.
However, he said that the EFCC did not set out to investigate the $40m transaction saying the transaction was discovered on investigation of other allegations contained in the petition sent to the EFCC by the new leadership of the ONSA in 2015.
The defence lawyer, reportedly showed Ikpe exhibits of Dasuki’s authorisation of the sum of $40m to Azibaola.
Meanwhile, the witness admitted on Tuesday that he and his team members obtained during a search of Azibaola’s office, documents detailing how the defendants spent the money released to them by the NSA office.
He said it must be the documents of the original case at the EFCC office when the defence lawyer him asked to produce them during the Thursday’s proceedings.
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The anti-graft agency alleged that the former president authorised the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation to release the sum of $1.2bn to the ONSA for “urgent national security project.”
Azibaola, his wife, Stella, and their firm, One Plus Holdings Nigeria Limited, are being prosecuted by the EFCC on seven counts of money laundering before the court.
The EFCC alleged in the seven counts that the three defendants unlawfully received $40m from the then NSA, Sambo Dasuki, allegations which they denied.