A Federal High Court, sitting in Abuja, has allow a new evidence tendered by former National Publicity Secretary, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Olisa Metuh, before the court, as final account on N400 million standing trail.
The new document, tendered on Tuesday at the resumption of hearing against Metuh, detailed how the sum of the N400 million was spent on a special national assignment.
The PDP former national publicity secretary counsel, Abel Ozioko submitted that the money was used for a special national assignment given to him by last administration’s President, Goodluck Jonathan.
Also, the court admitted in evidence, media publications where, in response to Metuh’s arrest and arraignment in 2016, the leadership of the PDP affirmed that the PDP did not in any way benefit from the fund.
At the court, after the documents were admitted and marked as exhibits 21 and 22, the counsel to the defendant said that the evidence were prove contrary to allegations that the money was used for political activities of the party.
Metuh had earlier tendered a document detailing disbursements, names and signatures of individuals who received funds in execution of the national assignment which was admitted and marked as exhibit 20.
The PDP former publicity secretary informed the court that no part of the N400 million was spent on any activity of the PDP, contrary to the claims of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC).
He said that his record of account and receipts of payments showed that the entire fund was used for the national assignment as directed by President Jonathan.
“No part of the N400 million was spent on any activity of the PDP.
“The record of account and all the expenditure made, with receipts, bearing the names of those who received funds show that the entire N400 million was expended in execution of the special national assignment.
“President Jonathan had always insisted that the party must not benefit from government funding and that no government fund or asset must be used to promote or support the activities of the party,” Metuh said.
Continuing in his evidence, Metuh cleared the air on his earlier hesitation to give out the names of those who worked under him in the execution of the assignment to the EFCC but preferred to tender them in court.
“Such individuals include respected professionals in various fields, including university lecturers and i will not want them to suffer the embarrassment of unnecessary negative media report and misrepresentations at the time.
“Exhibit 20 contains the names of professionals who worked with me and received funds in execution of the assignment.
”They accepted to participate in the assignment due to the confidence and trust they have in my integrity, I did not want them to suffer the humiliation of negative reports at the time.
“It was for this reason that I insisted that if there are any questions, repercussions, refunds or persecution to be suffered in that regard, it should be directed at me personally, Metuh said.
The trial judge, Justice Okon Abang adjourned the matter until May 27, 28 and 30, 2019 for continuation of trial.
Metuh is standing trial for allegedly receiving the sum of N400 million from the former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki, monies earmarked for the purchase of arms at the heat of the Boko Haram insurgency.
He was also accused of transacting with cash of $2 million without going through a final institution in violation of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act.