Nigeria’s ex-security adviser pleads not guilty on weapons charge


Nigeria’s former National Security Adviser Sambo Dasuki pleaded not guilty in court on Tuesday to a charge of illegally possessing weapons including assault rifles and bulletproof vehicles.

Dasuki, who played a key role in advising the government of former president Goodluck Jonathan on the Boko Haram Islamist insurgency, was granted bail at his appearance at the federal court in the capital Abuja.

The Department of State Security (DSS) has said it recovered arms and ammunition after credible intelligence led it to search Dasuki’s properties in Abuja and Sokoto.

It said it searched three properties of Dasuki’s properties in July and recovered assault rifles, several magazines of bullets and other military gear, as well as new vehicles including some that were bulletproof.

Prosecutor Mohammed Diri read out a charge sheet including a list of the items seized.

Justice Adeniyi Ademola adjourned the case and scheduled the trial to take place on Oct. 26.

As part of the bail conditions, the judge ordered the DSS – which had seized Dasuki’s passport – to leave his travel documents with the court to prevent him from leaving Nigeria.

President Muhammadu Buhari, who took office in May, replaced his defence chiefs including Dasuki in July as part of an effort to tackle Boko Haram insurgents who have killed thousands in a quest to create an Islamic state in northern Nigeria.