Alex Badeh Witness insists on giving ex-CDS N558m

The former Director of Finance of the Nigerian Air Force (NAF), Salisu Abdullahi on Tuesday told the Federal High Court Abuja that he gave Alex Badeh, N558 million.

The ex-Chief of Defence Staff is being tried for allegedly diverting N3.9 billion while serving as Chief of Air Staff for which he pleaded not guilty.

Salisu, who made the disclosure during cross examination by Badeh’s lawyer, Mr Akin Olujimi (SAN), said he took the money to Badeh’s house in November 2012.

The witness, however, said that he could not remember the dollar equivalent of the amount. He said that the finance officer in the Nigeria Air Force Command had records of all the money given to the former defence chief.

My lord, it is not my duty to keep records, but I know my command finance officer keeps all the record of transactions for exchange of naira to dollars.

“I cannot also remember the amount of dollars giving to me by my command finance officer to give to Badeh between October 2012 and December 2013.

“I also remember that I made a statement in this court that N90 million was used for furniture in Alex Badeh Junior’s house.

“I also made statements that were specific to issues not related to the N90 million,’’ he said.

The witness said all the records of payment made in respect of the properties purchased by Badeh were given to EFCC during interrogation.

When I was in EFCC custody, my finance officers were invited and asked to bring all documents in respect of the payment of properties purchased by Alex Badeh,’’ he testified.

Salisu said that the statements he made in EFCC custody were voluntary.

He also said that the budget office of NAF was not under the supervision of the Director, Finance and Account as at the time he served as director of finance.

I do not know what was going on at that time in terms of budgeting and budget allocation; the responsibility of budgeting for NAF was under the Chief of Policy and Plan.

“Alex Badeh was in-charge of that office from August 2010 to sometime in 2012 during the time of Air Marshal M.D Umar,’’ he said.

After listening to the testimony of the prosecution witness, the trial Judge, Justice Okon Abang, adjourned cross examination in the case till April 19.

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