Another stunning revelation, Tuesday, at the ongoing trial of former Chief of Defence State, Alex Badeh, showed how the former Airforce Chief ordered that N58m be changed to the US dollar each month.
A former Director of Finance and Account, Nigerian Air Force narrated how former Chief of Air Staff, authorised his aide each month to convert over N558 million stolen government money to United States Dollars.
Retired Air Commodore Salisu Abdullahi told the court that the man who converted the money monthly was brought in solely for that purpose.
He said: “Out of the balance of N1.6 to N1.7 billion, the sum of N558 million was taken to Badeh’s personal residence at Niger Barracks after it is exchanged to dollar”
He stated further during cross-examination that the officer in charge of the said conversion of Nigerian currency into US dollars for Mr. Badeh, identified simply as Group Captain Sini, was ordered to be brought to his (Mr. Abdullahi’s) office where Mr. Sini’s main responsibility was to convert the said sum, on a monthly basis.
Abdullahi said the Deputy Director of Finance at the NAF Head Quarters was directly responsible for distribution of funds.
“I was in charge of the Finances of the entire NAF, not my own office,” Abdullahi stated during cross examination.
During his cross-examination that Mr. Badeh received the controversial monthly sum of N558 million without accounting for same.
According to Abdullahi, Badeh never confirmed in writing, the receipt of the controversial sum of N558 million which was taken to his residence personally by Abdullahi.
“The only instruction he gives in writing are those requests forwarded in writing from branches and units for approval”, he stated.
He also gave a list of landed properties allegedly bought by the fomer Chief of Air staff with funds alleged to have been fraudulently diverted while he was head of the NAF.
The case was adjourned till April 19 for continuation of trial.
Badeh is facing trial at the Federal High Court, Abuja, on fraud related allegations.