By Johnbosco Agbakwuru
THE Presidency has said that there was no iota of truth in the report that President Muhammadu Buhari has agreed to give out $100 million from the recovered loot from late Sani Abacha to the Governor of Kebbi State, Atiku Bagudu.
The administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo was said to have agreed to cede $100 million to Governor Bagudu.
Presidency sources on Saturday night said that President Buhari has no intention to implement the agreement.
Recall that the president has come under fire following a report emanating from the United States State Department that a plan to give the money to the former aide of the former Head of State, General Sani Abacha, was delaying the repatriation of the looted asset traced to the late dictator.
But the presidency sources in an untitled and unsigned dispatch said the claims that Buhari was planning to give the Kebbi governor the money were untrue.
The sources said that the money being repatriated would be transferred to the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority and used to fund the on-going Lagos-Ibadan expressway, the Second Niger Bridge and the Abuja-Kano expressway.
The sources said: “It is important that the fog of misinformation and disinformation on the position of the Buhari administration on the ongoing recovery from the United States of the Abacha loot be cleared.
“The administration is currently talking to the US government on the return of three pots or tranches of Abacha loot.
“First is the USD 308 million which has already been agreed to. Yes, there is a USD 100 million yet to be resolved which the Obasanjo administration ceded to Senator Abubakar Bagudu, an agreement that is being litigated because the US government itself does not recognise that Obasanjo-Bagudu settlement.
“Then there is the third tranche of USD 60 million which is also a subject of private litigation by the Abacha family.
“Claims that the Buhari administration is planning to pay USD 100m to Bagudu from the USD 308m on the home stretch are absolutely untrue.
“That money, being paid to the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority is going into the funding of ongoing work on Lagos-Ibadan expressway, the Second Niger Bridge and the Abuja-Kano expressway.”