Former governor of Bayelsa State, Senator Henry Seriake Dickson has revealed that he was at the office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Tuesday to clarify some issues related to assets declaration.
Senator Dickson, in a statement on Tuesday noted that a non-governmental organization had petitioned the EFCC over some of his assets which they claimed were not declared.
In his words: “I understand that the subject matter of the inquiry relates to investments of my family trust, which I incorporated while being a member of the House of Reps to hold my family assets and investments which were made between 1996 and 2012 before I became Governor.
“I understand that there is a petition from an NGO alleging that these investments (largely buildings, plots, farms, etc in my village, Orua, Yenagoa, and two buy-to-let houses in the UK) were not declared. I have a duty to clarify these issues with the investigating authorities who by law have the responsibility to inquire into these matters.”
The lawmaker representing Bayelsa West senatorial district noted that the family investments were made before he became the governor of Bayelsa state and the assets were declared to the appropriate authorities before and after he left office.
“My solicitors and those of the trust have written to the EFCC to clarify these issues with the accompanying documents,” he said.
According to him the investments were funded by loans and advances and repaid from salaries, allowances, savings and others, adding that “one of them is still on mortgage and I have made these documents available to the EFCC”.
Dickson said he was shocked on getting to the EFCC, that the investigating team came up with a new allegation of diversion of flood funds in 2012 to the tune of N17.5 billion.
“The petition further alleged that the money was used for my re-election in 2019. The fact is that there was no such donation about the 2012 flood in Bayelsa”. He said.
Dickson however said, “there was no mention of donor or where the money came from. There was also no re-election for governorship in Bayelsa in 2019 which are clear proofs that the petition was totally frivolous”.
The Commission after looking into these allegations have since asked the former governor to return home on “self recognition”.