Following her detention by the Economic and Financial Crimes (EFCC) for four days, a former Finance Minister, Senator Esther Nenadi Usman, has reportedly made a substantial refund of the cash said to have been given to her by the Office of the National Security Adviser (NSA).
A competent source at the EFCC confirmed that the powerful female Kaduna politician, who served as the Director of Finance for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Campaign Organisation, reportedly received N2.5 billion from the N4 billion that was released from the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, on the orders of Colonel Sambo Dasuki, a former NSA, in the heat of the 2015 elections.
EFCC sources claimed that Usman had unhindered access to huge cash, some of which the EFCC said came from the CBN. According to findings, the former minister is being quizzed over various sums of money which were paid into her account.
Some of these funds are to have been traced to her personal and company’s accounts which she allegedly used to acquire properties in Abuja. She was arrested last Monday and taken into custody by EFCC operatives to enable her speak on what she knew about the huge cash paid to her during the elections. A competent source in the Commission, however, confirmed last night, that Usman had been cooperating with the operatives interrogating her.
More importantly, the source said she had refunded an undisclosed amount of money to the EFCC. Asked how much the former minister had remitted to the Commission, the officer declined to give details, saying he was not sure of the exact figure.
“I can confirm that the former minister has refunded some money but I will not tell you how much she has made available to us,” the officer said.
Asked when she would regain her freedom, the source said that releasing her depended on how soon she could make the money available to the Commission.
“It is to be expected that the woman could be released on administrative bail as soon as she refunds the amount we traced to her,” the officer stated.