Musiliu Obanikoro, a former Minister of Defence for State, testified in the ongoing corruption trial of former Governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose.
Fayose is standing trial alongside his company, Spotless, on allegations that he benefitted from N6.9billion siphoned through the office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) in the previous administration.
Obanikoro was led in evidence by Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), counsel to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), before Justice Mojisola Olatoregun of the Federal High Court in Lagos on Monday.
Giving his testimony, he said: “In June 2014, I received a call from Mr. Peter Ayodele Fayose, when we were approaching the gubernatorial election in Ekiti State wanting to know if there is any message from National Security Adviser, Colonel Sambo Dasuki, but I replied ‘no’. Shortly after his call, a message entered from the NSA saying a certain amount of money will be received into the account that was opened to manage Boko Haram threat under my watch as Minister of State for Defence.
“NSA told me that Fayose will call me as to how he will receive the money. A total equivalent of $5m from the National Security Adviser imprest account was given to Fayose by the order of NSA.”
Obanikoro said Fayose introduced one Biodun Agbele to him as the recipient for the money, which was done at Akure Airport, because it was cash.
“I had earlier wanted to transfer the dollars so that the naira equivalent can be withdrawn in Ado Ekiti, which was the reason I initially called Diamond Bank MD, but he replied that the bank does not have such capacity in Ado Ekiti for that huge amount of money,” he added.
Obanikoro said the sum of N200million was given to Fayose on June 5, 2014 from the National Security Adviser imprest account.
He equally said the sum of N2billion was delivered to Fayose during the Ekiti State election in 2014 from the NSA’s imprest account on June 16, 2014, noting that his aide, who is now late, was at the meeting where Fayose acknowledged receipt of the total Naira equivalent of the $5million.
Fayose's counsel, Kanu Agabi (SAN), applied for an adjournment to enable him cross-examine Obanikoro.
Meanwhile, counsel to Fayose's company, Mr Olalekan Ojo (SAN), who is also joined as a second defendant in the suit, also urged Justice Olatoregun to adjourn the case to enable him confer with his client on Obanikoro’s testimony.
Justice Olatoregun adjourned the case till February 5 and 6, 2019.