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$16bn power projects : EFCC, NASS records exonerate me of wrong doing — Obasanjo

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Olusegun Obasanjo

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo said on Tuesday that the National Assembly had absolved him of any wrong doing in the 16 billion dollars power projects executed by his administration between 1999 and 2007.

According to his media aide, Mr Kehinde Akinyemi, the former president had addressed the issue at different platforms.

Obasanjo’s reaction came on the heels of comment by President Muhammadu Buhari on the power projects on Tuesday.

Akinyemi said the president was re-echoing an “unsubstantiated allegation” against Obasanjo.

“A statement credited to President Muhammadu Buhari, apparently without correct information and based on ignorance, suggested that $16 billion was wasted on power projects by a former President.

“We believe that the President was re-echoing the unsubstantiated allegation against Chief Obasanjo by his own predecessor.

“It should be pointed out that records from the National Assembly had exculpated President Obasanjo of any wrong doing concerning the power sector and has proved the allegations as false.

“For the records, Chief Obasanjo has addressed the issues of the power sector and the allegations against him on many occasions and platforms, including in his widely publicised book, “My Watch.”

“Obasanjo has exhaustively stated the facts and reproduced reports by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) which conducted a clinical investigation into the allegations against Chief Obasanjo,” the spokesman said in a statement in Abeokuta.

He explained: “The book also contains report of the Ad-hoc Committee on the review of the recommendations in the report of the committee on power on the investigation into how the huge sums of money was spent on power generation, transmission and distribution between June 1999 and May 2007 without commensurate result.

“We recommend that the President and his co-travellers should read Chapters 41, 42, 43 and 47 of My Watch for Chief Obasanjo’s insights and perspectives on the power sector and indeed what transpired when the allegation of $16 billion on power projects was previously made.

“In the same statement credited to the President, it was alleged that there was some bragging by Chief Obasanjo over $16 billion spent on power.

“The $16 billion power expenditure was an allegation against Chief Obasanjo’s administration and not his claim. The President also queried where the power generated is.

Akinyemi said : “The answer is simple, the power is in the seven National Integrated Power Projects and 18 gas turbines that Chief Obasanjo’s successor who originally made the allegation of $16 billion did not clear from the ports for over a year and the civil works done on the sites.”

He, however, challenged anyone to launch fresh investigations into the matter if unsatisfied with the EFCC’s report.

“Chief Obasanjo challenges and in fact encourages anybody to set up another enquiry if in doubt and unsatisfied with the EFCC report and that of the Hon. Aminu Tambuwal-led ad-hoc committee.”


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