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$1.2 billion Arms Scam: Obanikoro, Abati Regain Freedom

ABUJA, NIGERIA (AFRICAN EXAMINER) – After three weeks of grilling in its custody, a former Minister of State for Defence Musiliu Obanikoro has been released by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Obanikoro arrived from US about four weeks ago and headed to the Abuja head office of EFCC the following day, to answer questions relating to the sum of N4.7 billion, part of $1.2 billion arms fund, which he collected from the former National Security Adviser (NSA), Col Sambo Dasuki (retd) in 2014.

His aide, Jonathan Eze, confirmed that he was released on late Friday. He also affirmed that his boss was in good health.

“We thank all his friends and followers who supported him in prayers and supplication among others. God bless you all”, said Obanikoro’s spokesman.

Prior to his release, the ex-junior Minister returned N100 million out of over N600 million traced to him, with an undertaking to pay the balance.

In addition, his Nigerian and US passports have been seized by the anti-graft body.

In a related development, former spokesperson, of the immediate past President Goodluck Jonathan, Dr. Reuben Abati, has also been released by the EFCC.

The Commission Spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, confirmed that Dr. Abati was released on Saturday.

Uwujaren equally confirmed that the ex-Presidential aide was released to a surety without further conditions.

Dr. Abati has admitted to have collected the sum of N50 million from former NSA, Col Dasuki. He claimed the money was distributed among the media houses.

Upon investigation, he was quoted to have pledged to refund N5 million.



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