PDP (Peoples Democratic Party) has been roped into ex-Gov. Joshua Dariye’s N1.162-billion corruption case being tried in a Federal High Court, Gudu, Abuja, presided over by Justice Adebukola Banjoko.
A statement Dariye made in 2007, when the trial began, which forms the basis of his prosecution by the EFCC now, confirms he gave the PDP southwest N160 million out of the N1.162 billion Ecological Fund he received for Plateau.
According to a statement by the EFCC spokesman, Wilson Uwajaren, issued on February 2, the former governor instructed that N250 million be paid to Pinnacle Communications Limited (PCL); N80 million to Union Savings & Loans; N550 million to the Plateau State government; N100 million to Peoples Democratic Party, PDP South-west; and N176,862,900 to Ebenezer Retnan Ventures, ERV, his own company, for doing nothing.
The N80 million credited to Union Savings was traced to one Kingsley Nkomah, a permanent secretary in the Ecological Fund office, who got the tip to speed up the release of the fund
The statement further explained that prosecution witness, Musa Sunday, who was cross-examined by G. S. Pwul, counsel to Dariye, told the court that the documents, including Dariye’s statement were obtained in the course of investigations into the alleged diversion of the N1.162 billion Fund.
Sunday said Dariye has also admitted that the balance of about N16 million was shared between the then Deputy Senate President, Ibrahim Nasir Mantu, who got N10 million, and the remaining N6 million given to the PDP in Plateau.
“During interrogation, the defendant volunteered his statement and made it clear that the N100 million paid PDP South-west was different from the N100 million we traced to Marine Float Nigeria Limited,” the witness said.
Justice Banjoko adjourned the case until February 3, 2016 for the continuation of trial.
Dariye has been slipping off the grip of prosecutiors since he left government in 2003.
He was once arrested for money laundering in London, but managed to jump bail, and escaped to Nigeria.