Despite the fact that 10 accounts were connected to Bola Tinubu, the APC presidential candidate, by US authorities in the early 1990s, $460,000 was taken out of one of the accounts as tax on investments held in US banks.
Festus Keyamo, the chief spokesperson for the Tinubu-Shettima Presidential Campaign Council, made this statement on a TV program.
He was addressing the controversy surrounding a document that was just recently made public by the Northern District of Illinois US District Court, which is believed to have looked into Tinubu’s suspected involvement in money laundering and drug trafficking roughly 30 years ago.
The matter, which ended in a settlement, led to Tinubu’s forfeiture of $460,000 in one of the accounts linked to the former governor of Lagos State.
Keyamo said Tinubu took responsibility for all the 10 accounts because they were also traced to his mother and “relatives”.
He also said Tinubu was roped in the drug trafficking case of two Nigerians who once stayed in separate flats in the same building where the ex-governor stayed at a time in the US.
“He, Asiwaju, went to open an account, the address by which he opened the account was already used by these people…investigated for narcotics,” he said.
Keyamo further stated that Tinubu was an employee of Mobil Oil and not a treasurer of a drug cartel.
“The deposits he made there (in banks) are what bankers called investments; he kept the money there and he was getting interests. They (US government) said he had not paid tax on those interests. That is all and guess what? The banks are supposed to deduct the tax from source.
“Out of the 10 accounts, it was only one account – the one in Heritage Bank – that they took $460,000 as tax on interest that he benefited on the investment he made in those accounts.
“In fact, all the money in Heritage Bank was not taken; they took only $460,000 as tax,” said Keyamo, who is also the Minister of State, Labour and Employment.
“His (Tinubu’s) detractors kept bringing up these issues over and over when his political profile is rising, when he wants to run for office or any political turn in his life, they will bring up these issues,” Keyamo said.
“The date on the papers flying up and down, the date of certification is 2022, so they are using this to confuse people that these are fresh papers. If documents are 40 years old or 100 years old, once you go to court, and apply for certified true copies of those documents, they will give you those documents but they will stamp the day they are giving you those documents.
“This is what our detractors, the PDP, perhaps that is what they went to the US for when they pretended that they went for high-level engagement. This is part of the high-level engagement they went for.”