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Dudafa urges court to absolve him of N1.6b charge

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Waripamo-Owei Dudafa

Former special adviser to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan on Domestic Affairs, Waripamo-Owei Dudafa, yesterday urged the court to declare him not guilty of the N1.6 billion fraud charges filed against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Dudafa, while being led in evidence by his counsel, Mr. Adegboyega Oyewole (SAN), urged the court to discharge and acquit him.

He told the court that contrary to the allegation by the EFCC, the N1.6 billion traced to him was not part of proceeds of a criminal act and that he did not conspire with anyone to conceal the funds.

“The source of the money is known. The money was not mine; the money belongs to the Anglican Communion of Otuoke Community in Bayelsa State. It was realised from the fundraiser organised by the church and the then president, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, who is a member and grand patron of the Anglican Church,” Dudafa said.

According to him, at the fundraiser, a businessman, Prince Arthur Eze, who was the chief donor, pledged $10 million and Jonathan instructed him (Dudafa) to follow up with Eze to redeem his pledge.

Dudafa added that Eze redeemed the pledge in instalments, adding that the money was kept in the bank account of one Somprei Someibi, whom he described as his friend and a friend of the Jonathan’s family.

“I was just carrying out the instruction of the former president. The funds were not mine. I know of a fact that the source of the fund was lawful. The money paid into various accounts is not unlawful, except they (EFCC) are saying that the fundraiser was illegal.”

“I am innocent and I want the charges to be dismissed and for the court to discharge and acquit me,” Dudafa told Justice Mohammed Idris at the Federal High Court in Lagos.

Justice Idris adjourned till February 25, 2019 for adoption of final written addresses, after which a date would be fixed for judgement.


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