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Thursday, January 7, 2016

Did Presidential Spokesperson Femi Adesina Collect N50M from Dasuki handout? #Dasukigate

Today NG reports that Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, on Wednesday reacted to the allegations made against him by Chairman and editor-in-chief of Thisday newspaper, Nduka Obaigbena over the collection of N50m from the office of the former National Security Adviser, Dasuki Sambo.

But Adesina said the guild of Editors will be in the best position to respond to Obaigbena’s claim.

“Please direct all questions to the Nigerian Guild of Editors. But I believe the body will soon issue a statement on what actually transpired” he said. Obaigbena, who is also the President of the Newspapers Propriators Association of Nigeria (NPAN) had on Monday revealed that the Nigerian Guild of Editors collected N50 million from the Office of the National Security Adviser, in a further widening of the arms purchase scandal.

Since the revelation was made, some Nigerians have been demanding the resignation and interrogation of Adesina, who was the president of the Guild when the payment was allegedly made.

UPDATE: The President of the Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE), Garba Deen Muhammad, has denied that his predecessor, now the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media, Femi Adesina, collected N50 million in cash from former President Goodluck Jonathan.

Mohammad said the amount was the contribution of the former president at the N850 million fundraising dinner on April 10, 2014 for the building of a befitting secretariat to be known as the Editors’ Plaza.

In a statement made available to THISDAY wednesday, Mohammad said: “On 10 April, 2014, the NGE held a fundraising dinner at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja, to raise N850million for the purpose of building a befitting secretariat in Abuja which shall be called The Editors Plaza. It was a public event, attended by several dignitaries among them federal cabinet ministers, state governors and captains of industry or their representatives.

“Former President Goodluck Jonathan was invited to the event at which he was represented by the former Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mr. Labaran Maku.

“At the event, Maku, among other donors, publicly pledged N50million as the federal government’s contribution towards the building project. Indeed the announcement of this donation has been on the website of the NGE since April 12, 2014; and is still there for those who may wish to verify.”

According to the statement, shortly after the event, the federal government redeemed its pledge through a transfer direct into the Zenith Bank account of the NGE.

“For the avoidance of doubt, neither Mr. Femi Adesina, who was the President of the guild at the time, nor any other official of the guild collected cash from the government.”

With files from ThisDay

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