Former Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh, spent more than eight hours on Monday, February 8, with operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, in Abuja, in connection with his alleged role in the $2.1bn arms purchase scam, during his tenure as Chief of Air Staff and later as the CDS.
Badeh, accompanied by three unidentified men, was escorted into the Idiagbon House headquarters of the EFCC by armed operatives, wearing a brown kaftan and a black cap.
The ex-CDS, who arrived at the EFCC office around 10am on Monday, was subsequently grilled by detectives for several hours. As of 10pm, Badeh was still in the custody of the anti-graft agency.
A top source in the EFCC said: “The ex-CDS reported for interrogation and we have been grilling him in the last eight hours on some of the contracts executed with over $2.1billion.
“He is having audience with one of the panels we raised to interact with those military chiefs invited.
“We confronted Badeh with some documents, including letters to the ex-NSA, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd), demanding the procurement of some military equipment.”
“We are not likely to release him on bail now because his interrogation may take a while. You know, he was central to the control of the Armed Forces.
“Before being the CDS, he was also a Chief of Air Staff. Some of these equipment were bought under him.”
He was summoned to appear before a special team of interrogators raised by the EFCC to look into the report of the Presidential Committee on Arms Purchase between 2007 and 2015.
The panel, which was raised by President Muhammadu Buhari in the twilight of his inauguration, turned in its report early this year, naming many top military officers, including Badeh as those to give explanations on what transpired during their tenure.
Apart from Badeh, others for investigation are Chief of Air Staff Air Marshal M.D. Umar; the most senior Air Force officer, AVM A. M. Mamu (the Chief of Administration); AVM O.T.Oguntoyinbo (former Director of Production, Defence Headquarters); AVM R.A. Ojuawo (Air Officer, Tactical Air Command, Makurdi; AVM J.B. Adigun (former Chief of Accounts and Budgeting in NAF); and AVM J. A. Kayode-Beckley(Director, Armament Research in Air Force Research and Development Centre); AVM T. Omenyi (MD, NAF Holdings), four top officers at the Defence Headquarters (DHQ) – Air Cdre AO Ogunjobi; Air Cdre. GMD Gwani; Air Cdre. S.O. Makinde; and Air Cdre. A.Y. Lassa.