Photo. Obasanjo, Ibori
Obasanjo: Ex-Gov Ibori stole $200m but returned only $15m
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has disclosed that former Delta State Governor James Ibori had stolen $200 million and returned only $15 million.
This happened during the years 1999-2007, when both Obasanjo and Ibori served in government.
Obasanjo was responding in an interview to claims of vindictiveness against him made by Ibori and the late Governor of Bayelsa State, Diepreye Alamieyeseigha.
Obasanjo said: “They allowed them to quote scripture, and these folks let them. I hope Ibori hasn’t said anything, but if he has, I want to know what happened to him.
“After conducting an investigation, the EFCC determined that Ibori had stolen around $200 million. So I ordered Ibori to come and look at the report.
“Once he was brought to me, I told him that If he had already spent $50m, he should send $150,000,000 to the EFCC.
“Then he returned asking, “Where do you suggest we put it?” I urged that the funds be returned to the appropriate state government.
“How do I do that? he asked. I assisted him in opening an account at the Central Bank. After funding Delta’s Central Bank account, he returned to suggest that I do the same for all of the states. I did.
“Then, in an effort to appear cunning, he delivered $15 million in cash to Nuhu Ribadu, who then brought it to me, at which point I instructed him to deposit it in the Central Bank.
“Even after that, we kept going for it. This resulted in his capture and subsequent incarceration in London. If that’s what you call vindictiveness, then more power to Nigeria.”