ThisDay Publisher Admits Receiving N680 Million From NSA As Compensation Over Boko...

ThisDay Publisher Admits Receiving N680 Million From NSA As Compensation Over Boko Haram Attacks (READ)

By Wires | The Trent on December 11, 2015
ThisDay ARISE NEWS
Nduka Obaigbena, Publisher of ThisDay, Arise Magazine, Arise TV

Nduka Obaigbena, editor-in-chief and chairman of Thisday, has opened up on money he received from the national security adviser Sambo Dasuki.

Operatives of the anti-graft commission are investigating how $2.1 billion money meant for the purchase of arms disappeared from the office of the ex-NSA.

The detectives detected another line of payment made to companies linked to Thisday publisher and owner of Arise Television, Nduka Obaigbena.

Obaigbena was paid at least N650 million from a doubtful transaction with Dasuki.

However, he said that the N550 million expenditures he got from Dasuki, were reward for the Boko Haram attack on the Abuja office of the paper on April 26, 2012.

DOWNLOAD: Letter Written To President Jonathan By Obiagbena

Twin blasts shook the office of This Day, a newspaper in Abuja, Nigeria, killing at least three people in April 26, 2012. | AFP/Pius Utomi Ekpei/Getty Images
Twin blasts shook the office of This Day, a newspaper in Abuja, Nigeria, killing at least three people in April 26, 2012. | AFP/Pius Utomi Ekpei/Getty Images

Obaigbena added that the extra N130 million was compensation for 12 newspapers whose circulation was stopped in 2014 by troops who said they were acting on intelligence that Boko Haram desired to transport explosives under the guise of media cars.

The newspapers’ boss wrote a letter dated from December 9, 2015 to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), in which he pledged to honour the commission’s invitation after returning from the United States of America.

He said he never got any “suspicious” money from the NSA.

See the documents below:

THE FULL TEXT OF THE LETTER

The Executive Chairman, The Economic & Financial Crimes Commission,
5, Fomella Street,
Wuse 11, Abuja,
Nigeria.

Attention: OLAOLU ADEGBITE, MFR. RE: LETTER OF INVITATION

Please refer to your letter of invitation dated 8th November 2015, which was received in our Abuja Office on the 8th of December 2015.

I am currently in the United States of America on my way back to Nigeria to honour your invitation, but I feel it necessary to make the following statements prior to my arrival in Nigeria:

1. We have never received any suspicious funds from the Office of the National Security Adviser.

ALL funds received from the Office of the National Security Adviser were PAYMENTS for COMPENSATION to MITIGATE the following: 1.1. N150,000,000 + N150,000,000 and N250,000,000 respectively received in August, November and February 2014 as compensation to mitigate the dastardly Boko Haram twin bombings of the THISDAY NEWSPAPERS offices in Abuja and Kaduna on Thursday April 26, 2012, during which 4 innocent Nigerian lives were lost, our buildings destroyed and we lost full colour Goss printing towers and three (3) pre-press Computer-To-Plate and anxiliary equipments and other (in)valuable property valued at over N2.5 BILLION.

This is aside from daily costs to pay 3rd party printers of over N1 Billion having lost our printing facility to terrorist due to inadequate protection by the Federal Government of Nigeria.

The bombing of THISDAY offices followed the Abuja United Nations Building bombing for which the Federal Government has so far spent N3 Billion for reconstruction and much more earmarked for furnishing;

1.2. N100,000,000 and N20,000,000 received in March 2015 for The Newspapers Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN) and 12 newspapers who demanded compensation for the brutal and unlawful seizure of newspapers and stoppage of circulation by armed soldiers in Abuja and several cities.

As President of the NPAN, it was my duty to lead media leaders to hold discussions with President Goodluck Jonathan to avert a class action lawsuit against the Armed Forces and the Federal Government of Nigeria.

2. On both occasions, President Jonathan said he did not wish to lay precedence and in our case, he specifically said there were many victims of Boko Haram.

I had to confront President Jonathan on the issue when I learnt of approvals for the reconstruction of the Abuja United Nations Building, since we were the second major organisation to be attacked by Boko Haram after the UN attack.

He therefore directed me to meet the National Security Adviser who processed the 3 payments in question. Please find attached a copy of our letter to President Jonathan as well as correspondence with the then NSA on the Newspapers’ payment.

I will be making my way to Nigeria to meet with you should you require further information.

Thank you.

Nduka Obaigbena

Chairman & Editor-in-Chief, THISDAY NEWSPAPERS GROUP.

via Naij

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