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My Conversation with Sunday Alabi

Barack Obama’s campaign has knowingly used a front company, Citizen Services Inc., to steer money to a community organization with a history of political shenanigans and campaign violations, ACORN. We had the story first and have highlighted ACORN’s mischief (see here and take a look at Nancy’s piece on ACORN.) and David Brown of the Pittsburgh Tribune fleshed it out. The Obama campaign told Pittsburgh Tribune reporter, David Brown, that they made a simple mistake in labeling. That is a lie. How do I know? Because I spoke to a board member of Citizen Services in July, before any of this became public. My quest to understand why Barack Obama’s campaign spent almost $1 million dollars on Citizen Services Inc. started with a search of the public corporate records for Citizen Services. I learned that one of the Directors was a man listed as Sunday Alibi (sic). I did subsequent searches for Mr. Alibi and learned that his real name is Sunday Oladimeji Alabi. Alabi not Alibi. Here is the corporate information:

Louisiana Corporate Filing
Business Information
Filing Number: 35852080N
Name: CITIZENS SERVICES, INC.
Name Type: LEGAL
MAILING Address: 1024 ELYSIAN FIELDS AVE
NEW ORLEANS, LA 70117-8402
CORPORATE MAILING ADDRESS: 1024 ELYSIAN FIELDS AVE
NEW ORLEANS, LA 70117-8402
Business Type: LOUISIANA NON-PROFIT CORPORATION
Filing Date: 01/07/2005
Filing Type: REGISTERED
Status: CURRENTLY ACTIVE IN SECRETARY OF STATE RECORDS
Standing: 1
Place Incorporated: Louisiana
Registered Agent
Name: NATIONAL REGISTERED AGENTS, INC.
REGISTERED AGENT Address: 1280 CLAUSEL ST
MANDEVILLE, LA 70448-3957
As of Date: 01/07/2005

Annual Report Filings
Filing 1
Filed Date: 12/10/2007
Filing Number: 36608373
Comments: ANNUAL REPORT (08)

Filing 2
Filed Date: 12/20/2006
Filing Number: 36336934
Comments: ANNUAL REPORT (07)

Filing 3
Filed Date: 06/01/2006
Filing Number: 36196988
Comments: ANNUAL REPORT (06)

Officers – As Of – 04/20/2007
Name: ALIBI, SUNDAY
DIRECTOR
Contact Type: OFFICER
Address: 1201 E 22ND ST
MINNEAPOLIS, MN 55404-2969

Name: DOMINGUEZ, TERESA
DIRECTOR
Contact Type: OFFICER
Address: 621 PROSPECT ST
EL PASO, TX 79902-3745

Name: LEON, ROSALIE
DIRECTOR
Contact Type: OFFICER
Address: 3990 DELTA ST
SAN DIEGO, CA 92113-4206

My search for Mr. “Alibi” uncovered several variations of his name:

Sunday L. Alabi
Sunday O. Alabi
Alabi O. Sunday
Ahagi Sunday
Sunday Oladimeji Alabi

Thanks to the internet I finally tracked him down in Minnesota and gave him a call. Mr. Alabi answered the phone and I introduced myself using my real name. But I did tell a white lie–I said I got his name and number from Bob Shrum at the Democratic National Committee. He hesitated. When I repeated that I got his name and number from the DNC he brightened up and became quite chatty. Using the Obama FEC filing as my guide I told Mr. Alabi that I needed to hire Citizen Services to help my campaign with “Staging, Sound, and Lighting.” Without a moments hesitation Mr. Alabi told me, “we don’t do that.” He went on to identify ACORN as the organization that handles those matters and he told me to contact Marc Seiden (he gave me a cell phone number for Mr. Seiden, which is a District of Columbia cell phone).

Citizen Services is a paper organization. What does that mean? It has no employees and no office space. It does not advertise its services. And it shares a physical address in New Orleans with ACORN. It appears to be no more than a front or cut out used to move money in order to obscure the final expenditure. Let’s see the invoices Citizen Services submitted to the Obama campaign. There is no doubt the money initially went to Citizen Services. The question is, what did the money actually buy? And, who was the ultimate recipient?