The immediate past acting national chairman of the Peoples’ Democratic Party, Prince Uche Secondus, was arrested Tuesday by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, for illegally receiving 23 luxury vehicles valued at N310 million from controversial businessman, Jide Omokore, PREMIUM TIMES is reporting.
The online newspaper quotes a source at the EFCC as saying the vehicles included a Mercedes Benz G63 and a Range Rover Autobiography.
“His (Mr. Secondus) name popped up while we were investigating Jide Omokore who lifted crude oil repeatedly through his Atlantic Energy but failed to remit the money to the government”, said the source.
It would be recalled that just recently Mr. Omokore, a close associate of the immediate past Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke, was compelled to pay $14 million crude oil royalty his company, Atlantic Energy Drilling Concepts Nigeria Limited, failed to remit to the federal treasury.
It was gathered that Mr. Secondus, who only on Monday handed over the reins of leadership of the PDP to a substantive chairman, Ali Modu Sheriff, was picked up by the anti-graft operatives the following day after investigators suspected he had served as a conduit for laundering Mr. Omokore’s funds.
“Mr. Omokore distributed money and gifts to politicians and investigators are suspicious that actually those money and vehicles might have passed through him (Mr. Secondus) to other politicians”, the source said.
Mr. Secondus is currently undergoing interrogation at the EFCC headquarters in Abuja.
Meanwhile, the PDP has criticized the federal government’s “oppressive and unfair treatments” of its key leaders.
In a statement on Wednesday by its National Legal Adviser, Victor Kwon, the party said the arrest of its former acting chairman was part of the governing All Progressive Congress-led government’s grand plot to decimate the opposition.
“We are also aware that plans have been perfected by the federal government to arrest and detain the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, Senate Minority Leader, Senator Godswill Akpabio and other leaders of the party on imaginary charges.
“Indeed, intelligence available to the party shows that the federal government, using its various agencies, is bent on destroying any opposition to the ruling party as all indications show that the government is more interested in humiliating the PDP than fighting corruption”, Mr. Kwon said.