The founder of Daar Communications, Raymond Dokpesi, has been released after he was questioned for about two hours on Wednesday at the Abuja Office of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS).
Mr Dokpesi who has been accused of corruptly receiving N2.1 billion from ex-National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki, was initially detained by the State Security Service (SSS) at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport in Abuja upon his return from a medical trip from Dubai on Friday.
He was released after about an hour of interrogation.
The AIT boss was then invited by the immigration service. He was told to come with his passport.
Mr Dokpesi arrived at the Abuja Immigration office a few minutes before 2 p.m. on Wednesday. He was detained and interrogated for about two hours before he was released.
PREMIUM TIMES cannot immediately confirm reasons for the questioning. But a source familiar with the matter said the politician was asked to produce his passport for scrutiny. Mr Dokpesi, however, told his interrogators that his passport was in the custody of the court which granted him bail in his trial.
“He told them he returned his passport to the court on return from Dubai as directed by the trial judge,” the source said. “But the interrogators were unimpressed. They suggested he should retrieve it and submit it to immigration because it is a property of the federal government.”
The Comptroller-General of NIS, Muhammad Babandede, who escorted Mr Dokpesi out of the premises restrained journalists from interviewing him.
The AIT boss, however, said he had nothing to say at the moment as the reason for his interrogation was over.
James Abraham, the Public Relation’s Officer of the Immigration service did not pick calls to his phone or respond to a text seeking clarification as at press time.
Mr Dokpesi, the owner of Nigeria’s first private radio station is facing a six-count charge of money laundering at the Federal High Court, Abuja.
Before his prosecution, he was arrested and detained for weeks by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, for allegedly receiving N2.1 billion from the office of the embattled ex-National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki, prior to the 2015 general elections. The money is believed to be part of the mismanaged billion dollar funds earmarked to purchase weapons for the military, in a scandal now known as #Dasukigate.
Upon his arraignment, the politician was granted bail by Justice Gabriel Kolawole of the Federal High Court for N200 million and two sureties.
Last May, Mr Dokpesi told the court that he would be making a no-case submission to wrap up his trial after the EFCC closed its corruption case against him.
But the judge, John Tsoho, at the resumption of the hearing last November struck out the no-case submission. He said the defendant’s argument that he has no case to answer is false.
“I hereby strike out the application,” the judge said.
Mr Dokpesi, who denies the allegations against him, has also accused the federal government of defamation of character.
By Premium Times