All relevant documents relating to what transpired from the NIA, EFCC, ONSA, SGF office in the custody of Osinbajo led committee
As Committee winds up Wednesday
By Henry Umoru
ABUJA- AS the Presidential Panel investigating the $43 million cash found in a luxury apartment at Osborne Towers, Ikoyi, Lagos and the N220 million meant for welfare of Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs in North East led by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo continues its assignment, fresh facts have emerged that top National Intelligence Agency, NIA officials have distanced themselves from the suspended Director-General, Ambassador Ayo Oke.
According to the source, those who decided to leave the embattled Oke to be on his own against the backdrop that h acted alone, include his two Deputy Directors General and other top management staff.
The source told Vanguard that the deputy Directors -General and the top management took the decision because they were particularly angry with the suspended DG because according to them, he brought the Agency and Intelligence community into what they described as total disrepute.
According to them, his failure to make full disclosure to the National Security Adviser, NSA, Major General Babagana Monguno and President Muhammadu Buhari, were acts of disloyalty, conspiracy and subversion, adding that the sources of the money and custody were not known either to the NSA or the President, as Amb. Oke sidelined his management in strategic policy decisions.
The source said, ” He alone should carry his cross. It was a clear case of divided loyalty because he was appointed by President Jonathan and retained by President Buhari. His conduct was not guided by the professional guidelines, otherwise he would have been honest to inform the President and the NSA.”
Meanwhile, as Osibanjo’s panel is due to wind up its assignment on Wednesday, more facts are emerging from the Committee’s investigation.
A source told Vanguard that Vice President Yemi Osibanjo led Committee which was mandated by President Muhammadu Buhari to investigate Osborne towers money scam associated with the suspended DG NIA Amb. Ayo Oke is making a steady progress on the assignment.
Sources close to the committee disclosed that all relevant documents relating to what transpired from the NIA, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC; Office of the National Security Adviser, ONSA; Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF office are in the custody of the committee.
A specific reference was in respect of a letter to President Muhammadu Buhari dated 24th March 2016, in which the National Security Adviser reported the uncovering of a huge sum of money released to DG NIA by Jonathan’s administration in 2015.
In this regard, the DG NIA was confronted with and his response was that the money was released for some major projects to mark the agency’s 30th anniversary.
In concluding the said letter, General Monguno raised an issue that “however the noble objectives surrounding the anniversary projects and related covert Operations, there is possibility for the process to be misused or abused in the future by the NIA leadership”
In a related development, another document was a correspondence letter by the NSA to DG NIA Ref NSA/332/5 Dated 17th May 2016.
The NSA wrote “please recall that on February 2016 I empanelled and mandated a three (3) Man Verification team to conduct comprehensive assessment of the NIA projects in Lagos and Abuja. In view of the foregoing and in accordance with the legal and constitutional guarantees relating to the establishment structure, composition and duties of the NIA enshrined in subsection 1 and 2 of the instrument no 1 of the National Security Agencies Decree (CAP 278 LFN), quote the instrument in full. The office of the NSA shall henceforth take on the task of verifying the current state of the projects and associated records”
He concluded “in the context of these oversight functions, the NIA hereby requires availing the NSA regular updates on these projects until completion”.
Another source at the NIA, said apart from conflict of interest, when Amb. Oke used his wife’s company for the Osborne flat, neither the two Deputy Directors General at the NIA, nor its management were privy to what Amb. Oke was doing.
According to the source, “there was a sense of personal gratitude to former President Goodluck Jonathan for appointing him DG, NIA and his decision not to make full disclosure to President Buhari and the NSA borders on disloyalty, conspiracy and criminal concealment of information to superior authority the source stated.
”He further disclosed that Documents at the disposal of the committee speaks for itself, even if the relevant authorities were informed on the projects on ground, it was incontrovertible that only one man concealed to himself the custody and knowledge of the huge amount taken privately. He never disclosed to anybody within and outside the agency the whereabouts of such huge amount at his disposal kept unlawfully. Also there was no record in the NIA indicating the Ikoyi flat as a safe house or operational base of the agency.”