The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has detained Senator Albert Bassey (Akwa Ibom North East) in connection with a N30billion vote for direct labour projects during the tenure of ex-Governor Godswill Akpabio.
Senator Bassey, who was Commissioner for Finance during the Akpabio administration, had allegedly avoiding the EFCC invitation to explain the matter.
A top source in the EFCC, who spoke in confidence, said: “We have been interrogating Senator Bassey in the last 12 hours on the allegations against him.
“One of the allegations against him is how N303million worth of vehicles were given out as gifts to Bassey by the owner of Atlantic Energy Drilling Concept Limited between July 30, 2010 and January 8, 2014.”
A fact-sheet from the EFCC said: “The Senator as Commissioner for Finance was also the Chairman of the Inter-Ministerial Direct Labour Coordinating Committee.
“About N30billion hit the account managed by the committee during the period. The fund came from Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and statutory allocations.
“Following allegation of massive wiring of the cash into private accounts, the EFCC decided to invite Sen. Bassey to give account. This agency is looking into allegation of money laundering against Bassey.
“Detectives have uncovered how contracts worth N618million to two companies namely Bay Atlantic Energy Services Limited and Sahel Energy/Power between 2010 and 2014 were awarded. The companies belong to the owner of Atlantic Energy Drilling Concept Limited Chief Jide Omokore.
“At about the same period, vehicles worth N303million were given out as gifts to Bassey by the owner of Atlantic Energy Drilling Concept Limited especially between July 30, 2010 and January 8, 2014.
“From investigation by detectives, there is a correlation between the transactions and the gifts. The Akwa Ibom State Government has refused to make relevant documents available to the EFCC.”