A defense witness, Mr. Ngozika Ihuoma, in continuation of his testimony, has told the Federal High Court Sitting in Abuja that a former Chairman, Pension Reform Task Team, Mr. Abdurasheed Maina, recovered N282 billion cash and 222 choice property valued at N1.6 trillion.
Mr. Ihuoma, who told the court that he worked as a biometrics consultant for the Task Team, explained that the said money was warehoused in the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, and Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission, ICPC.
The defense witness said out of the money recovered by Mr. Maina, N74 billion was used to finance the 2012 national budget as passed by the National Assembly.
Mr. Ihuoma also told the court that a presidential directive was issued by the then President Goodluck Johnathan that 2.5 percent which amounted to N7.05b of the recovered money should be used to run the Task Team’s official duties, but was never released despite several requests and reminders to the Ministry of Finance and the National Assembly.
The witness, during his testimony, said in September 2012, some EFCC operatives invaded the privacy of the DSS biometrics that was being handled by the Task Team led by Abdurasheed Maina, and uploaded it on the internet, adding that the action gave rise to the rivalry between the DSS and EFCC till date.
The witness also said Maina was dismissed from service by the then Head of Service, Ibrahim Sali, without a query even when he was granted leave by former President Johnathan after he was attacked by hired assassins.
Justice Okon Abang adjourned until March 4 for continuation of trial.