By Jimoh Babatunde
Former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode, has denied ever receiving any money from former President Jonathan, Colonel Dasuki or any other member of President Jonathan’s government.
Reacting to an online publication that he received N1.7 billion cash from President Goodluck Jonathan, Fani-Kayode said “ this is false. A few hours later they changed their story and said that I received 1.7 billion naira from the office of the former NSA, Colonel Sambo Dasuki. This is also false.
“I have never received one kobo from President Jonathan himself, Colonel Dasuki or any other member of President Jonathan’s government. I have not ever been in receipt of any public funds and neither was I the beneficiary of any payments in cash, transfer, cheque or otherwise from any government official during the tenure of President Jonathan.
Fani-Kayode explained that as Director of Media and Publicity of the Jonathan/Sambo Campaign organisation that he received money on behalf of the Directorate he headed from private individuals and companies during the election campaigns.
While noting that those were not public funds but rather private contributions specifically for the Presidential and other campaigns, he said such moneys were transferred into his account by the Director of Finance of the Presidential Campaign Organisation and “that account was specifically set up for the purpose of running the publicity and media aspect of the campaign for the whole country and his Directorate.
“These private individuals and companies paid their contributions into a designated account which was provided and controlled by the Director of Finance and from there she transferred it to the accounts of the various Directors and various individuals that were running for public office that the PCO supported.
“The money that was sent to me for my Directorate by the Director of Finance was used in a lawful and responsible manner and by the time the campaigns were over my Directorate had paid all of its bills for services rendered and was not owing any media house or anyone else one kobo.”
Fani-Kayode added “the Presidential candidate of our party, President Goodluck Jonathan, the D-G of the PCO, the Auditor of the PCO, the Advisor to the PCO and the Director of Finance of the PCO all received reports and saw the results of the efforts of my Directorate. Not only were they satisfied with our efforts but they also commended us.”
The Director of Media and Publicity of the Jonathan/Sambo Campaign organisation said not a kobo of public funds was spent by or given to his Directorate during the campaign adding that “no election campaign anywhere in the world, including that of President Buhari was run with just words, goodwill, grass and pebbles as all campaign adverts or air time were run and paid for with large sums of money.
“This is especially so with publicity and media because that was the lifeblood of the various campaigns. I repeat, there is nothing that we did in the campaign organisation or that my Directorate did that Lai Mohammed, Buhari and the APC did not do in theirs. As a matter of fact they spent far more than we did but I have no idea where they got their money and whether they were private or public funds.”