A prosecution witness has testified that Col. Sambo Dasuki [rtd] authorised the payment of 40 million dollars in favour of One
Ibrahim Mahir stated this when he testified in the case of Azibaola Roberts, cousin to former President Goodluck Jonathan at the Federal High Court in Abuja on Monday.
He said that Dasuki, a former National Security Adviser (NSA), instructed him to prepare a payment mandate of 40 million dollars in favour of the company.
Roberts and his wife Stella were arraigned on June 8 on a seven-count charge of money laundering. Mahir, who was the first prosecution witness, told the court that Dasuki had endorsed a memo to him with details of the company’s account.
“On Aug. 20, 2014, the NSA endorsed a memo to me which originated from the director of finance and administration in the office of the NSA giving bank details of a company called One Plus. “The memo also gave details of the purpose for which the company was to be paid the sum of 40 million dollars.
“The NSA instructed me to prepare payment and my understanding of that was that I should prepare the payment mandate for One Plus for his signature.
“After I got the memo, I prepared the payment mandate, sent it to him, he signed and sent it back to me.
“The subsequent necessary action was for me to countersign, which I did and I sent it to the CBN for payment,’’ Mahir said.
Earlier, Roberts lead counsel, Mr Chris Uche (SAN), had applied for a short adjournment. Uche said the adjournment would give him time to meet with his client to prepare his defence.
He said that when bail was granted, his team had difficulties in perfecting the bail conditions, adding that the conditions were only perfected last week.
He said they needed more time to prepare their defence because there were some documents that they needed to subpoena from the office of the NSA. Uche also sighted indisposition as part of the reasons his team was asking for an adjournment.
The prosecuting counsel, Mr Sylvanus Tahir, however, objected to the application on the grounds that they had a witness already in court who was stopped from going on lesser hajj on account of the trial.
Tahir said that they had prevailed on the witness to postpone his trip and not allowing him to give his testimony would amount to a waste of effort.
On the issue of indisposition, Tahir said the defence had about 19 other lawyers on the team and without the lead counsel, trial could commence.
The judge, Justice Nnamdi Dimgba, agreed with the prosecution that trial should commence since the defence had sufficient time to prepare their defence.
Diimgba adjourned the case till July 4 and July 5 for continuation of trial.