An Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) investigating officer in Nigeria, Adariko Michael, on Tuesday alleged that N2.2bn ($5.8 million) was spent on prayers to win the war against Boko Haram in Nigeria and Saudi Arabia.
EFCC stated that the amount was spent by former National Security Adviser in Nigeria, Sambo Dasuki, and a former General Manager of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Aminu Baba-Kusa.
Dasuki, Baba-Kusa, Acacia Holdings Limited and Reliance Referral Hospital Limited are alleged to have been involved in the diversion of over $2bn meant for the purchase of arms to fight insurgency in the North-East.
The commission charged them with 32 counts bordering on misappropriation, criminal breach of trust, dishonest release and receiving various sums of money before Justice Husseini Baba-Yusuf.
Led in evidence by EFCC attorney, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), the witness said N650m was also transferred to Acacia Holding Limited’s account with EcoBank, while another N600m and N200m were transferred to the company’s account with United Bank for Africa.
He said, “Between September 27, 2013, and April 16, 2015, N50m was credited to Reliance Referral Hospital’s account.
“Based on responses from the banks involved, as investigating officer, we found out that money was transferred to several individuals and companies.
“When we went through the account statement, we asked the second defendant (Aminu Babakusa) the reason for this.
“He informed us that the money was used to hire clerics to pray for the nation as regards Boko Haram crisis.
“When we asked him to provide the names, contacts, and phone numbers of the clerics he hired to pray for the nation, he mentioned only two.”
After listening to the testimony, Justice Baba-Yusuf, adjourned the matter to a later date for continuation of hearing.
Dasuki was arrested in 2015 over $2 billion arms fraud and released on bail after 4 years in detention, according to BBC.
The $2 billion arms deal or Dasukigate is an arms procurement deal in Nigeria that resulted in the embezzlement of $2 billion through the office of the National Security Adviser under the leadership of the now retired Colonel Sambo Dasuki, a former National Security Adviser in Nigeria.
The illegal deal was revealed following an interim report of the presidential investigations committee on arms procurement during Nigeria’s former president Goodluck Jonathan’s administration.