“The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) disclosed on Tuesday how it found a house in Abuja bought at N240million Abuja house and furnished with N134million for his son, Alex Badeh junior.”- The Nation
An operative of the EFCC, Abubakar Madaki, told a Federal High Court in Abuja Tuesday that he was the head of a task force that investigated a report from the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) in 2015, which formed the basis of the 10 count-charge of money laundering filed against Badeh and a company, Iyalikam Nigeria Limited.
Madaki, who testified Tuesday as the 19th prosecution witness in the trial of Badeh and his firm, said Badeh’s Bank Verification Number (BVN) linked the former Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal to the purchase of the house.
Led in evidence by lead prosecution lawyer, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), Madaki said Badeh bought the house located at 19, Ogun River Crescent, Abuja for his son, Alex Badeh (Jnr) in 2013.
The witness said the house was paid for in cash with dollar equivalent of N240m and that the property was furnished with N80m and air conditioning system was installed in the house with N12m.
He added that N42m was spent on installation of camera view and swimming pool in the house, and that the N134m spent on installing the facilities and furniture in the house was paid directly from the account of the Nigerian Air Force.
Madaki said the house at 19; Ogun River Crescent, Abuja was one of the numerous properties linked to Badeh.
He said a tenancy agreement between Badeh’s son and a firm – Platinum Universal Construction Company (PUCC) – was drafted to conceal Alex Badeh (Jnr)’s true ownership of the house.
The witness stated that when Badeh’s son (for who the house was bought) was invited by the EFCC, he initially claimed to be a tenant in the house, and that he rented it from PUCC.
Madaki said, “For 19, Kumasi Crescent, Abuja, the occupant happened to be the son of the first defendant (Badeh) and his name is Alex Badeh Jnr.
“He was not at home but was request to report at the EFCC office by the next day.
“The next day, he reported and explained that he was renting the house from Platinum Universal Construction Company and that his rent was due to expire in 2014.
“Because of the claim, I instructed some officers to follow him and conduct a search of the house.
“After the search, they came back and he was released and asked to return in two days. But he said he was scheduled to fly a private plane as a pilot and would be unable to come that day.
“He came back the next day but we told him we were still making enquiries and that whenever we were ready we would notify him.
“Based on the name given to us by him as his landlord, we tried to conduct a search through BVN.
“Having verified it, we discovered that the company had an account with Zenith Bank and another with GT Bank.
“We requested the account documentation. We discovered that the Nigerian Air Force had had paid N92m into the company’s Zenith Bank account and N42m in two installments – N18m and, N24m. Altogether N42m was paid into the GTB account.
“We now invited the owner of the company, Kabiru Salau.When he came; he came with a tenancy agreement between Alex Badeh (Jnr) and the company claiming that Alex Badeh Jnr rented the apartment from his company.
“We inquired to know if he had any contract with the Nigerian Air Force and he said ‘yes it was long time ago’ when he was paid N356m for the renovation of the Nigerian Air Force Guest House.
“And he said he had not done any other contract with the Nigerian Air Force and was still insisting that he rented the apartment to Alex Badeh Jnr.
“He was then served with the company’s statements of account. Having gone through the statements of account, he started sweating.
“After some time, he said he would say the truth. He explained that actually, it was not true that Alex Badeh rented the apartment.
“He said sometimes in 2013, a friend of his introduced the property No 9, Kumasi Street to him, that he intended to sell it.
“And coincidentally, Salisu Yishau (the first prosecution witness in the trial – PW1) who gave him the job of renovating the Nigerian Air Force Guest House contacted him that he should get a befitting apartment for the son of the Air Chief of Staff, the first defendant, was asked to go and negotiate.
“He negotiated with the owner of the property fromN300m to N260m. He contacted Salisu Yishau and the fund was made available in dollar equivalent.
“Having paid the fund, he requested the name to be used for the document. He contacted who said he was going to speak with the first defendant.
“After sometime, PW1 got back to him, and said he should use the name of his company, Platinum Universal Construction Company (PUCC) to purchase the property.
“It was after the agreement that Alex Badeh Jnr met him through PW1 to take possession of the property.”
The witness added that when Alex Badeh Jnr inspected the house, he requested for a company that could furnish the house, shortly after N92m was transferred from the Nigerian Air Force’s account to PUCC’s account for that purpose.
Madaki added that: “Few hours later the company, Platinum Universal Construction Company received an alert of N92m from NAF.
“He called Alex Badeh to confirm if the money was from him because it was paid through the account of the Nigerian Air Force and he answered in the affirmative.”
Madaki stated that out of the N92m, N80m was transferred to the account of a Lagos company which did the furnishing job and the balance of N12m was spent on the installation of air conditioning system.
The witness said another N80m was received from NAF’s account for installation of camera view and swimming pool.
Madaki said: “The sum of N12m was used for the purchase of air conditioners which were installed in the house.
“Having furnished the house, he was about handing over the key to Alex Badeh Jnr when Alex Badeh Jnr told him that he needed a camera view and swimming pool in the house.
“Not quite long a total of N42m hit his GTB account from the NAF account making a total of N134m.
“When he was handing over the property Alex Badeh told him to write a tenancy agreement between Platinum Universal Construction Company as the landlord and Alex Badeh Jnr as the tenant.
“He then handed over the key to Bdeh. Before he drew the tenancy agreement, Alex Badeh Jnr requested the original certificate of occupancy to him – Certificates of Occupancy.”
Badeh and his company, Iyalikam Nigeria Limited are standing trial on a 10-count charge of money laundering, in which they are accused of fraudulent diversion of N3.9bn belonging to the Nigerian Air Force.
They were said to have used the money to buy landed assets in choice areas of Abuja and Badeh’s home state, Adamawa State.
The trial resumes Wednesday.
Source: The Nation