ABUJA, Nigeria — Security agents besieging the home of Nigeria's former presidential adviser on national security, and preventing him from leaving the country, said Thursday he is refusing to answer questions about a $2 billion arms deal.
The Department of State Security said it wasn't illegally blocking retired Col. Sambo Dasuki despite a court order releasing his seized passport for medical travel.
Family members said he did not leave the country Wednesday for a medical checkup because of a tip-off that he would be arrested at the airport. They said Dasuki told agents Thursday that any new charges should be filed in court.
Dasuki denied a State Security statement Thursday saying he has refused to appear before a committee investigating a $2 billion arms procurement. He said he has never received such an invitation, according to PRNigeria, an agency that publishes news releases.
The Federal High Court last month released Dasuki on bail after he pleaded innocent to charges of money-laundering over $423,000 in cash seized from two homes and illegally possessing a weapons cache that State Security said could endanger the West African nation.
Dasuki, 60, was a key adviser to former President Goodluck Jonathan and usurped the role of the Ministry of Defense in procuring weapons. He was called before a Senate committee last year to explain a South African seizure of $9.3 million in cash flown to that country on a private jet and a $5.7 million bank transfer that South Africa blocked, saying it involved an illegal arms deal. Dasuki told the Senate the deals were legitimate.
President Muhammadu Buhari, who was elected this year, has ordered an investigation into all military purchases to expose corruption that has hampered the military's fight against Boko Haram's 6-year-old Islamic uprising that has killed 20,000 people.