Nigerians have questioned integrity of the Labour Party presidential candidate, Peter Obi after his campaign director general, Doyin Okupe was sentenced to 2 years imprisonment over money laundering.
It was earlier reported that Okupe was sentenced to two years for breaching the Money Laundering Acton on Monday, December 19, 2022, by a Federal High Court in Abuja.
Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu presiding over the case on Monday found Okupe guilty of contravening sections 16(1)&(2) of the Money Laundering Act and accepting cash in excess of the threshold allowed under the Act without going through a financial institution.
Okupe was on found guilty of receiving over N200 million cash from a former National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.).
He was therefore sentenced to two years by Justice Ojuwku with an option of N500, 000 fine on each of the 26 count charge for which he was found guilty.
Delivering her judgment, the judge held that Okupe, who is the first defendant in the suit filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, violated the Money Laundering Act, and had up to 4:30 pm on Monday to pay the fine option, totalling the sum of N13 million on all the charges he was found guilty of or be sent the Kuje Correctional Centre.
Justice Ojukwu, in sentencing Okupe, considered the pleadings for leniency from the wife of the convict, Omolola Okupe, and that of his son, Adesunkanmi Okupe, and the allocated by his counsel.
While stating that the Money Laundering Act provided that no individual or organisation shall receive any sum above N5 million and N10 million respectively without passing through a financial institution, the judge held that, “there is no evidence that the money passed through a financial institution” and that Okupe was not a financial institution, and that, even if the president was said to have authorised the funds, he did not say that the money must be paid in cash in violation of the money laundering.
Consequently, the court found the former SSA to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan guilty in counts 34, 35, 36 to 59 and set him free from counts one to 33 on the grounds that the prosecution failed to establish the charge of money laundering and criminal breach of trust and corruption against the NSA.
In counts 34 to 59, upon which Okupe was convicted, he was accused of receiving various sums of money ranging from N10 million on different occasions from 2012 to 2015 when he was SSA to Jonathan.
Some Nigerians, however, reacting to the development attacked Peter Obi saying that he cannot be trusted since his ally has been convicted of money laundering.
Bin Hamzat said; “Peter Obi shouldn’t be trusted. He surrounded himself with thieves and money launderers, don’t know if he was. The fact is that PO is not trustworthy.”
Onah Best wrote; “The whole DG of the saviour presidential campaign convicted man no one is safe from corruption in this country life no be anybody mate o see people wey wan move naija 🇳🇬 from consumption to production and themselves na real consumer.”
Prince Ajibade Temilade said; “See the saints that want to liberate the country, werey still dey laugh.”
Jossy said; “Let’s see if the LP would have the balls to suspend him. Doyin is old wine in new bottle. That being said, I still believe, the sins of the entire LP is nothing compared to that of any of the other two leading candidates. 2023 is about the best candidate with the least baggage.”
Meanwhile, some opined that development is but a politics, adding that the government is trying to deter them from giving their mandate to Peter Obi.
Alexander Manshak wrote; “We shall never be deter nor discourage on these Obi23 movement if u like jail Peter Obi we will still vote for him in 2023.”
Aloysius Ikokwu said; “It is just a political incanstration.Very soon de judgement will be tested in a higher court .It is too late to back off now . obedient has come to rescue de country.”
Űśmź Ęvèįèł said; “This MOVEMENT is unstoppable!!!! Nothing APC or PDP will do to stop it. 4uk everyone who’s against this movement.”