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Based On Logistics: Former INEC Official Admits To Millions From Deziani

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A former Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) officer, Christian Nwosu has yesterday at a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos denied that he was bribed by a former Petroleum Minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke, to rig the 2015 general elections for her party.

 Former INEC Official Admits

Diezani Alison-Madueke, Nigeria’s minister of petroleum, speaks during the closing news conference at the 157th Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) meeting in Vienna, Austria, on Thursday, October 14, 2010. Oil climbed for a second day in New York after an industry-funded report showed U.S. crude supplies fell and the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries moved closer to improving compliance with production cuts. Photographer: Vladimir Weiss/Bloomberg via Getty Images

However, he admitted that the N30 million he collected from her was for “logistics”.

Nwosu, who was a former Administrative Secretary of the INEC in Kwara State, made the admission while testifying in a trial-within-trial before Justice Mohammed Idris.

Nwosu was charged by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), alongside another official, Tijani Bashir, for allegedly receiving N30 million bribe from Alison-Madueke.

They were arraigned along with Yisa Adedoyin, who had pleaded guilty to receiving a cash payment of N70 million from Alison-Madueke.

Alison-Madueke, who is also named in the charge, is said to be “at large.”

Speaking under cross-examination by the EFCC prosecutor, Mr Rotimi Oyedepo, Nwosu said, “I did not personally benefit from the N30 million; the ad hoc staff benefited because the elections went smoothly with the logistics support.”

“The money was not given to me by way of cheque; we were asked to go to the bank to collect it.”

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“No cheque was given to me at the bank. I just signed a document at the bank which confirmed the receipt of the money.”

“I did not instruct the bank to transfer the money to any account because it was not for me but for the coordinator who is to ensure that the money gets to the ad hoc staff.”

Nwosu said N13 million and N17 million was paid into his accounts on April 7 and April 13, 2015 respectively.

He insisted that the statements he made at the EFCC were “dictated” to him, while the one he made voluntarily was neglected. Justice Idris therefore adjourned continuation of trial until November 15.

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