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HomePolitics$460,000 alleged drug money forfeiture: Atiku says Tinubu can't outrun his past 

$460,000 alleged drug money forfeiture: Atiku says Tinubu can’t outrun his past 

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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate Atiku Abubakar has derided the president-elect, Bola Tinubu, for attempting to present the $460,000 forfeiture case as a tax evasion-related matter and not drug charges.

A statement by Atiku’s special assistant on public communication, Phrank Shaibu, said that after the lies told by Tinubu and his surrogates, the truth had finally been unraveled through the processes filed by the All Progressives Congress (APC) at the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal.

“Festus Keyamo had gone on national television to say that Tinubu’s forfeiture of $460,000 was based on tax obligations. At least they have now finally admitted that the forfeiture was in relation to a drug trafficking case, even though Tinubu did not admit guilt.

“But what has been established is that Justice John Nordberg ordered on October 4, 1993, that the funds in the amount of $460,000 held in First Heritage Bank in the name of Bola Tinubu represent the proceeds of narcotics trafficking or were involved in financial transactions in violation of 18 U.S. 1956 and 1957.

“Tinubu should know that he cannot outrun his past. He was investigated in relation to heroine trafficking. He had millions of dollars in his account while on a salary of $2,500 monthly, and he forfeited part of it in order to escape jail. These are the facts. The elections are over, and he should stop lying to Nigerians.”

Atiku said Keyamo’s lack of understanding of the legal proceedings was one of the reasons he failed as a prosecutor with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

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“Festus Keyamo’s law degree really needs to be investigated. One wonders how he even became a senior advocate. He went on national television to say the $460,000 was a fine for not paying taxes.

“Now, Tinubu is telling the Election Petition Tribunal that the money in question was forfeited as part of a court decree in relation to his drug case. No wonder Keyamo lost so many high-profile cases with the EFCC while he was a prosecutor,” Shaibu said.

The statement, however, knocked Tinubu for claiming that he was not under investigation but only the funds in his bank accounts were under probe.

He asked Tinubu to explain to Nigerians how he was able to deposit millions of dollars one year after opening bank accounts while earning a salary of $2,500 at Mobil.

“The elections are over, but Tinubu is still trying to deceive Nigerians. Is he saying the millions of dollars found in his account just magically appeared there, just as his aide said on live television that the bullion van found on his premises ahead of the 2019 election erroneously found its way there?

“Tinubu should stop taking Nigerians for a ride. Let him explain the business he did in order to have such a humongous sum of money in his account.”

Shaibu said a Tinubu presidency would represent a setback in the fight against narcotics, given his antecedents and his open admission that he lived with known drug kingpins.

Shaibu implored the US authorities to set aside diplomatic protocols and furnish the Nigerian judiciary with all information relating to the trial and verdict of the US investigation of Tinubu over drug dealings and his forfeiture of the sum of 460,000 US dollars during his conviction.

“The US should not associate with electoral thieves by merely stating whether he is still under investigation or not. We need in-depth details about this cornman,” Shaibu said.

(omayowa@globalfinancialdigest.com; Newsroom: +234 8033 964 138)

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