Okupe Asks FG To Use Satellites, Drones To Tackle Banditry

A file photo of former presidential aide, Dr Doyin Okupe.

 

Doyin Okupe, a former Senior Special Assistant to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan has called on the Federal Government to adopt technology to tackle banditry and other forms of insecurity confronting the country.

Okupe disclosed this in an interview on Channels Television breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily.

He explained that technology was also adopted during Jonathan’s administration in monitoring Boko Haram activities in Bama, Borno State.

READ ALSO: Gas Revolution: Our Objective Is To Transform Nigeria Into An Industrialised Nation – Buhari

“When we were in government and there was a crisis in Bama. Boko Haram attacked a village called Bama and burnt down houses. Several districts were burnt. We got satellite pictures of Bama and I was able to count the number of houses in every unit that were burnt, including the ones that were not burnt.

“I have not seen enough seriousness in any arrangement that we are making that can stop them. We can use satellite images and drones,” Okupe said.

Reacting further on how the Federal Government is handling banditry, Okupe condemned negotiations noting that this only breeds insecurity.

Okupe stressed that technology involves investment and the Federal Government should embrace this option.

“This attempt of backslapping terrorists and bandits by negotiating with them and giving them money is not going to work. Banditry and kidnapping can only continue as long as it is profitable and there are no consequences.

“There are commercial satellites that are available that can picture anything that has the minimum width of 12 inches. A man has more than 12 inches in width.

“From a room in Abuja, you can monitor a forest in Zamfara and see everybody that is moving. We just had to deploy money and technology,” he added.

The former presidential aide said the more criminals can get away with banditry, the more people will keep investing in it.

The Odds Of Surviving COVID-19 Were Not In My Favour, Says Okupe

 

A former presidential aide, Dr. Doyin Okupe, on Monday narrated what he went through as a coronavirus (COVID-19) patient at the isolation centre.

Following his recovery from the disease, Okupe said with his health condition, he had few chances of surviving COVID-19.

“I am a doctor and when I was going to the isolation centre, I knew what I was going into. I had virtually all the risk factors that are against the survival,” he revealed during an interview on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily.

He added, “I am 68-year-old (which is not the correct bracket for COVID-19), I am hypertensive, I was recently diagnosed with diabetics; I had issues with me that naturally will complicate my situation.”

Okupe, who was once a Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs to former President Goodluck Jonathan, said he did not show any symptoms before going into isolation.

He, however, said he developed a fever but was treated by medical personnel at the centre and recovered after about six days.

 

A New Life

The former presidential aide explained that he must have developed the fever due to his mood and emotion which apparently weakened his defence system.

He, therefore, urged Nigerians to take the COVID-19 warnings seriously and comply with the directives issued by the relevant authorities to curb the spread of the disease.

Okupe also noted that some of the cases at the isolation were malaria-related and not COVID-19, but it was better for the government to be proactive in its efforts.

On the lessons learned, he said, “As far as I am concerned, the Doyin Okupe before April 23 had died; God has given me a new life, I am a brand new person.

“In order to show gratitude to God for sparing my life, I want to forgive anybody who has offended me and I want anybody who I have offended or wronged in any way whatsoever to please forgive me.”

“For me now, it is the only service to God and to the nation; I have no personal ambition to pursue because if I had died, that is the end of it,” Okupe added.

Okupe Asks Buhari’s Govt To Correct Past Mistakes, Build World-Class Hospital

A photo combination of President Muhammadu Buhari and Dr Doyin Okupe.

 

 

A former presidential aide, Dr Doyin Okupe, has appealed to the Muhammadu Buhari administration to correct the mistakes made by previous governments in the nation’s health sector.

Speaking during his appearance on Channels Television’s breakfast show – Sunrise Daily on Monday, he urged the Nigerian government to build at least one world-class hospital in the country to discourage medical trips abroad.

Okupe, who was once a Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs to former President Goodluck Jonathan, admitted that it was disheartening that the nation does not have such a standard facility since it gained independence in 1960.

“The mistakes of the past are daunting, they are perplexing, they are embarrassing that since 1960 to date, we cannot boast of one major centre in the whole country that makes it irrelevant for you to go abroad,” he stated.

 

A Great Lesson

The former presidential spokesman and his wife tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) in April and were discharged from the treatment centre after they recovered fully.

Although he barely showed any symptoms before going into isolation, he revealed that he developed a fever days later.

 

Okupe, however, stressed the need for Nigeria to pay more attention to its health sector and take advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to learn its lessons.

He believes the country has the resources to establish a standard hospital and a Nigerian was recently appointed as the head of the COVID-19 team in Sierra Leone.

“As a doctor, I can tell you for free that we have the expertise – both at home and away.

“There are thousands and thousands of very very highly qualified, competent professionals who are abroad in the US and everywhere, including Nigeria,” he said.

The medical doctor added, “The problem that we will run into, the shame that will overcome this country, is if we do not learn a great lesson from this.”

He insisted that the government must discourage the practice of seeking medical treatment abroad by its citizens.

According to Okupe, building a standard hospital that will not require any Nigerian to travel abroad for medical treatment is less than $150 million.

“That is just it – $150 million; if you multiply that by six, you are not even talking about $1 billion and we have been given $3.5 billion.

“If we just take one out of that and spend it to establish these things, then we would have learned a great lesson, and I believe that this government will do so,” he stated.

Alleged Money Laundering: EFCC Witness Testifies Against Doyin Okupe

 

The trial of Dr. Doyin Okupe, a former aide to ex-president Goodluck Jonathan, who was arraigned on 59 counts of money laundering continued on Friday at a Federal High Court In Abuja.

At the resumed trial, the prosecution witness, Mr. Hassan Seidu, an operative of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) told the court how Dr Okupe received payments from the office of the National Security Adviser, retired Col. Dasuki Sambo, for special services.

The witness also told the court how a company, Value Trust Investment Limited, was used to siphon money from the office of the NSA without executing any job for the Federal Government.

Mr. Seidu, who is the third prosecution witness in the trial of Dr. Okupe informed the court that Dr Okupe failed to justify the payments made to him and Value Trust Investment Limited.

Read Also: Supreme Court Affirms Interim Forfeiture Of N2.4bn Linked To Patience Jonathan

He recounted how the accused was unable to account for the funds received even when he claimed to have paid staff salaries from the money.

The counsel to Dr. Okupe, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Joe-kyari Gadzama, however, insisted that the testimony of the witness was merely a fairy tale, just as the counsel to Value Trust Investment Limited, Tolu Babaleye, dismissed the testimony.

Meanwhile, the prosecutor, Ibrahim Audu, claimed that he had enough documentary evidence to prove the case against the former presidential aide beyond reasonable doubt.

With the conclusion of the testimony of the third witness, the court adjourned further trial to April 1, 2019, for cross-examination of the witness.

Veteran Broadcaster, Atere Testifies Against Okupe

EFCC Opens Case In N702m Suit Against Okupe
A file photo of PDP chieftain, Doyin Okupe.okupe

 

Veteran broadcaster, Olusola Atere has testified against former Senior Special Assistant to former President Goodluck Jonathan, Doyin Okupe.

At the resumed hearing of the case on Wednesday, Atere, testified as Prosecution Witness 2, (PW2), before Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu of the Federal High Court, Abuja.

He told the court that “Okupe was a former Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs to former President Goodluck Jonathan, whom he said came to the NTA and met with the management of the News Directorate which he happened to be a member of then, to request for the production of a one-hour programme to promote the policies and programmes of the then Federal Government’s administration.

Speaking further, he explained that, “We held a meeting and started planning for the programme. Subsequently, members of Okupe’s team came for another meeting with NTA.”

Atere told the court that after the meeting, he was directed to raise a memo to send a budget proposal to the office of the Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs on October 9, 2013 for which he said no response came from Okupe.

He further disclosed that the NTA appointed a producer for the proposed programme who was liaising with the team from Okupe’s office.

According to him, by October 23, 2013, he was directed by his boss, the Executive Director News to raise a memo to the Acting Director General NTA, informing him of the Okupe request and that by October 24, 2013, the Director General minuted to him that the programme should be taken as part of corporate social responsibility and be broadcast at no cost.

Speaking further, Atere informed the court that he didn’t have much to do with the programme from that point as the producer was liaising with Okupe’s team.

He also revealed that Dr Okupe provided the three guests that discussed weekly on the programme as well as made arrangements to provide the presenters of the programme.
“So I can’t say what kind of arrangement was made in bringing guests, who were experts and ministers,” Atere said.

He retired as Executive Director News, NTA in 2016.

Okupe is being arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on 59 counts bordering on money laundering and criminal diversion of funds to the tune of N702,000,000.

Claim That I Received N750m Is Untrue, Says Okupe

Again, EFCC Arrests Doyin Okupe
Doyin Okupe,a former Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to former President Goodluck Jonathan

 

A former aide of Ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, Doyin Okupe, has said that claims making the rounds that he collected N750m from the office of the National Security Officer (NSA) for no service rendered, is false. 

Okupe made the assertion on Friday via his Twitter page.

He said, “Efcc has started its media trial. D press release 2dy that I rcvd N750m 4 nothing,is untrue& never stated in court ystdy.”

Dasukigate: Court Adjourns Okupe’s Trial to Mar 6

Justice Ijeoma Ojuwku of the Federal High Court, Abuja adjourned the trial of a the former Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs to former president, Goodluck Jonathan, to March 6, 2019.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, had on January 14, 2019 arraigned Okupe on a 59-count charge bordering on “money laundering and criminal diversion of funds” to the tune of N702 million.

At the resumed sitting, on February 28, 2019 Osas Azonabor, an operative of the EFCC, testifying as the first prosecution witness, was cross-examined by defence counsel, Joe Kyari Gadzama, SAN.

READ ALSO: EFCC Opens Case In N702m Suit Against Okupe

Azonabor had on February 27, 2019 while being led in evidence by counsel for the EFCC, Ibrahim Audu, narrated how sometime in 2016, the EFCC got intelligence that some individuals were paid by the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA), for “doing nothing”.

He further told the court that investigations revealed that Okupe was one of the beneficiaries.

He also added that after analysing payment vouchers, it was realised that cash payment of N50 million was made into Okupe’s account on April 8, 2014. Analysis of several other vouchers also revealed several of such payments.

Under cross-examination by Gadzama, the prosecution witness told the Court that during investigations, Okupe gave investigators, “so many documents” that were analysed.

Specifically, when the defence counsel put it to him that payments as shown on the voucher were for “special services”, Azonabor replied that the findings proved otherwise.

“When we asked Okupe further about the payments, he said he did not render any special service,” he said.

EFCC Opens Case In N702m Suit Against Okupe

EFCC Opens Case In N702m Suit Against Okupe
A file photo of PDP chieftain, Doyin Okupe.

 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has opened its case against a former Senior Special Assistant to former President Goodluck Jonathan, Dr Doyin Okupe, who is being prosecuted before Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu of the Federal High Court, Abuja.

Okupe is facing a 59-count bordering on money laundering, criminal diversion of funds to the tune of N702m.

He is alleged to have collected the money from the Office of the National Security Adviser, for doing nothing.

At the trial on Wednesday, the first prosecution witness, one Osas Azonabor, an operative of the Commission, who was led in evidence by the Counsel to the EFCC, Ibrahim Audu, told the court that sometime in 2016, the EFCC got an intelligence that some individuals were paid by the Office of the NSA for doing nothing.

READ ALSO: EFCC Seeks Diezani’s Extradition, As Court Adjourns Arraignment Till May

He said that when investigations began, it was realised that one of the beneficiaries was Okupe, who is the first defendant, adding that the EFCC wrote to the office of the NSA demanding the vouchers of the payments made to the defendant.

According to him, after analysing the payment vouchers, it was realised that cash payment of N50m was made into Okupe’s account, as stated in the voucher of April 8, 2014.

He also stated that another cash payment of N6m was found to have been made to Okupe on April 2, 2014.

In addition, he explained, there were series of payments in multiples of N10 million made to Okupe between 2012 to 2014.

The witness further told the court that EFCC’s investigation found the sum of N50m paid into the bank account of Value Trust Investment Limited, of which Okupe is a director, adding that another N35m was paid into the account of Abraham Telecoms Nig. Limited, to which Okupe is a signatory.

“He told us he was the Senior Special Assistant to former President Goodluck Jonathan from 2012 and was placed on a monthly salary of N835,000, paid to him by the SGF,” Azonabor said.

He explained further that the defendant said he was paid N10m monthly for 24 months by the office of the NSA and that the money was reduced to N5m monthly from January to May 2015.

He said that Okupe had explained that the money was for special services and when asked to elaborate what he meant by ‘special services’, Okupe said part of the money was used to sponsor ‘Insight’, a programme on a national television”.

EFCC Has Not Accused Me Of Fraud, Says Okupe

 

A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Doyin Okupe, says he has not been accused of fraud by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

He stated this during his appearance on Sunrise DailyChannels Television’s breakfast show on Monday in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

Okupe, who is a former aide to former President Goodluck Jonathan, wondered why he should be prosecuted for paying his salaries.

“For taking money to pay salaries and run my office, I have 59 charges,” he decried.

The PDP chieftain added, “But what I want to make clear here is that in the charge sheet of the EFCC … there is nowhere they have accused me of fraud.

“There is no fraud, there is nothing; what they said is that I received money from the (former) National security Adviser (NSA) to pay salaries when I should have known that the NSA got the money he was giving me through fraudulent means.”


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Again, EFCC Arrests Doyin Okupe
EFCC Arraigns Doyin Okupe Over Alleged N702m Fraud
Court Grants Okupe N100m Bail, Fixes New Date For Trial


Okupe said his arraignment by the anti-graft agency was politically motivated, describing it as an attempt to silence him.

He explained that the case began about two and a half years ago, and was investigated for almost nine months.

The PDP chieftain said the commission told him that they had nothing against him but that if there was any other issue, they would call him.

He, however, insisted that his recent arrest and arraignment had political motives in the face of the electioneering period.

“People decided that one of the best things is to keep this man quiet, let us go and dig up that case,” Okupe said.

He alleged, “What is my case? The case is that the NSA was the one that was funding my office on a monthly basis; that cannot be an offence. I have 59 charges.”

Court Grants Okupe N100m Bail, Fixes New Date For Trial

Court Grants Okupe N100m Bail, Fixes New Date For Trial

 

A Federal High Court in Abuja has granted bail to Dr Doyin Okupe, a former aide to former President Goodluck Jonathan.

Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu granted the bail on Monday when Okupe was arraigned before the court by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over allegations of fraud.

A statement from the EFCC revealed that Okupe was charged with 59 counts bordering on “money laundering and criminal diversion of funds” to the tune of N702 million.

He had, however, pleaded “not guilty” to the charges.

READ ALSOEFCC Arraigns Doyin Okupe Over Alleged N702m Fraud

Following his plea, the prosecuting counsel, Ibrahim Audu, asked the court for a date for the commencement of the trial.

On his part, counsel to the former presidential aide, Tolu Babaleiye, urged the court to admit his client to bail through a motion on notice dated December 17, 2018.

He said, “The defendant will in no way tamper with evidence since the proof of evidence is before the court that means investigation has been concluded.”

Babaleiye further urged the court to admit the defendant to bail on self-recognisance, adding that “he will not jump bail as he is well known”.

In his response to the application, Audu said, “The defendant was given administrative bail after he volunteered his statement, thereafter, he was nowhere to be found until December 2018 in Lagos”.

He added, “There was nothing substantial in the defendant’s affidavit. The court should exercise its discretion judicially and judiciously based on materials supplied before the court.”

After listening to all the arguments, Justice Ojukwu granted bail to the defendant in the sum of N100 million with one surety in like sum.

She said the surety must be resident within the jurisdiction of the court and must depose to an affidavit of means.

The trial judge also held that the surety must have landed properties which must also be within the jurisdiction of the court.

She asked the surety to submit to the court tax clearance papers from 2016 to 2018 and must have recent passport photographs.

“The surety and defendant must deposit their international passport to the court. The documents are to be deposited with the Deputy Chief Registrar Litigation of the court,” she held.

Justice Ojukwu, thereafter, adjourned till February 27, 28 and March 6 for trial.

See pictures of Okupe’s arraignment below;

EFCC Arraigns Doyin Okupe Over Alleged N702m Fraud

BREAKING:  EFCC Arraigns Doyin Okupe Over Alleged N702m Fraud

 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arraigned Dr Doyin Okupe at the Federal High Court, Maitama.

Okupe, a former aide to former President Goodluck Jonathan, was arraigned before Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu on Monday in Abuja.

He was arraigned along with two companies, Value Trust Investment Ltd and Abrahams Telecoms Ltd, over allegations of fraud.

READ ALSOCourt Grants Okupe N100m Bail, Fixes New Date For Trial

According to a statement from the anti-graft agency, Okupe was charged with 59 counts bordering on “money laundering and criminal diversion of funds” to the tune of N702 million.

One of the counts read: “That you, Dr Doyin Okupe, being the Senior Special Assistant to President Goodluck Jonathan from July 2012 to May 2015, and being the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, and a signatory to the bank account of Abrahams Telecoms Ltd, on or about the 3rd October, 2014 in Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, directly took possession or control of the sum of N35 million, transferred to the account of Abrahams Telecoms Ltd from the account of the Office of the National Security Adviser with the Central Bank of Nigeria purporting to be for special services when you reasonably ought to have known that the said fund formed part of the proceeds of an unlawful activity”.

Okupe who is also a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), however, pleaded “not guilty” to the charges.

Upon his plea, the prosecuting counsel, Ibrahim Audu, asked for a date for the commencement of the trial.

But Okupe’s counsel, Tolu Babaleiye, through a motion on notice dated December 17, 2018, prayed the court to admit the defendant to bail.

He said, “The defendant will in no way tamper with evidence since the proof of evidence is before the court that means investigation has been concluded.”

After listening to both parties, Justice Ojukwu granted bail to the defendant in the sum of N100 million with one surety in like sum.

Again, EFCC Arrests Doyin Okupe

Again, EFCC Arrests Doyin Okupe
Doyin Okupe, a former Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to former President Goodluck Jonathan

 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has re-arrested and detained a former presidential adviser, Dr Doyin Okupe.

Okupe, who is also a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), confirmed his arrest to Channels Television on Friday.

He disclosed that he was detained today and would be arraigned on Monday next week, as against the January 18.

The anti-graft agency also confirmed the development to Channels Television in a telephone interview.

READ ALSO: EFCC Detains Doyin Okupe

It explained that Dr Okupe was being charged for corruption and would be arraigned at the Federal High Court in Abuja next week.

Okupe, however, faulted the change of date for his arraignment by the anti-corruption agency.

According to the former adviser to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, the EFCC made the change without consultation with his lawyers.

He said his lawyers were only informed about the alteration in the date on Friday evening.

In December last year, the PDP chieftain claimed that some EFCC operatives stormed his residence in Lagos and confronted him with an allegation of cybercrime.

He also alleged that the operatives asked him to follow them to their office without a warrant for his arrest and he declined to follow them.

Instead, Okupe said he offered to visit the office of the anti-graft agency.

Okupe was later taken into custody by the EFCC and questioned over allegations of financial fraud and other activities in his office during the previous administration.

He was held for several days until his case was charged to court.

Cybercrime Allegation: EFCC Releases Okupe

PDP Calls For Doyin Okupe's Release
Doyin Okupe,a former Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to former President Goodluck Jonathan

 

Former presidential adviser, Dr Doyin Okupe, has been released from the custody of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Mr Okupe who was released on Wednesday evening after spending two days in detention said he had been granted administrative bail.

He told Channels Television that he was handed a charge sheet which had 59 counts, bordering on breach of trust and money laundering, allegations relating to his activities when he was in government as a Senior Special Assistant to former President Goodluck Jonathan.

Read Also: EFCC Detains Doyin Okupe