N255 million bulletproof car scandal: EFCC to grill Stella Oduah

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has invited a senator from Anambra State, Stella Oduah, for questioning over the N255 million car purchase scandal.

Ms. Oduah, a former Minister of Aviation, would be grilled about her role in the controversial purchase of bulletproof cars which ridiculed the government of former President Goodluck Jonathan, the Nation reported.

The paper said Ms. Oduah was slated to appear before anti-graft detectives on Wednesday for questions that would border mostly around a petition the agency received over the N255 million spent in purchasing the exotic BMW vehicles.

Although EFCC sources confirmed to PREMIUM TIMES that Ms. Oduah is under investigation for her role in the car purchase scandal, they were unable to ascertain when she will appear for questioning.

“We have a petition about the car purchase scandal,” an official said. “But we don’t know when she’s going to appear.”

The officials declined to identify the petitioner.

The senator declined comments on the matter to PREMIUM TIMES throughout Wednesday. Calls and text messages to her telephone lines were neither acknowledged nor responded to.

In 2013, Ms. Oduah was embroiled in the car purchase allegations in 2013, when reports emerged that she had compelled the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, an agency under her as Minister of Aviation, to procure the vehicles for her.

The purchase drew nationwide controversy, and activists like Femi Falana, urged EFCC to conduct a thorough investigation with a view to prosecuting the former minister.

But Ms. Oduah, who was elected into Senate even as the scandal raged in 2015, has always maintained her innocence.

She said in response to a query by Mr. Jonathan in October 2013 that the procurement was duly provided for in the NCAA budget that year, which also adopted lease payments in instalments over 36 months.

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