The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is reportedly tracking transactions on all bank accounts of various states to prevent outgoing governors from stealing public funds.
The step by the EFCC was informed by intelligence report about suspicious financial activities by top officials of the mentioned states and others not mentioned.
The development came almost a week after the Imo State acting Accountant-General, Mr Uzoho Casmir, was arrested for allegedly withdrawing N1.050bn from the state coffers for vote-buying on the instruction of Governor Rochas Okorocha.
Uzoho’s arrest on Thursday last week followed intelligence report that the governor allegedly intended to use the money for vote-buying in favour of his preferred candidate in the March 16 governorship elections.
The EFCC was also said to have exposed about N1bn cash withdrawal by Kwara State Government, a week before the February 23 presidential and National Assembly elections.
Investigations by the EFCC operatives revealed that the money was withdrawn from the state’s account domiciled with Sterling Bank.
“The agency is also monitoring the accounts of many other states to prevent suspicious withdrawals and transactions.”
DCP Abba Kyari, who leads the team that usually arrest suspected deadly criminals, has denied telling a suspect to implicate the Senate President, Bukola Saraki in the controversial Offa Bank Robbery incident which occurred last year.
A suspect Akinnibosun had told the court that Abba Kyari asked him to implicate Saraki.
His words; “Abba Kyari told me to say that the Senate President Bukola Saraki gave me the guns we used for the operations. But I declined.
“He (Abba Kyari) promised that they would reward me handsomely and set me free if I could indict Saraki. When I disagreed, they asked some policemen to take me back to the cell. During this time, my hands were tied to my legs.”
Veteran actor and comedian, Babatunde Omidina a.k.a Baba Suwe, has been discharged from the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH). He left the hospital on Saturday.
The information has sparked excitement among his family, friends and fans.
Actor Yomi Fabiyi confirmed this latest development via Instagram on Saturday. He stated that Baba Suwe can now walk without the stick, less pain and he is getting better. He is however expected to proceed abroad very soon to further his treatment.
Fabiyi also stated that with the administration of further therapy and medications, ‘Adimeru’ will come out completely of the major ailments.
Yomi wrote: “Veteran Actor and Comedian Babatunde Omidina a.k.a Baba Suwe has been discharged from LUTH after intense medical treatment.
“I can confirm to you that efforts to quickly stabilize and/or completely treat him to full wellness by medical experts at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) at the instance of Minister of Health are yielding positive results as Baba Suwe can now walk without the stick, less pain and he is getting better. If further theraphy is administered and medications adhered to, he will come out completely of the major ailments. He will, however, proceed abroad very soon to further his treatment.
“Baba Suwe personally with tears of joy rolling down from his eyes ask I thank Nigerians, his fans and the media community. While expressing his deepest gratitude, he stated seriously but with humor that “Nigerians have large hearts inspite of the economic situation in the country and can revive a dead man with their kindness and good hearts if the person is not buried”.
A suspect facing trial for his alleged involvement in the April 5 bank robbery in Offa, Kwara State, has accused the police of forcing him to indict Senate President Bukola Saraki.
The suspect, Friday Akininibosin, was speaking at at a High Court in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, on Friday.
His testimony was reported by the Nigerian Tribune newspaper.
Mr Akininibosin who is facing trial with four others for the robbery also told the court that he had no personal knowledge of Mr Saraki before he was arrested.
According to Tribune newspaper, the suspect said that a former police officers allegedly involved in the robbery, Michael Adikwu, was killed for his inability to go with the alleged plan of the prosecutors.
The police also said a picture of one of the accused at a wedding with Mr Saraki emerged, linking the Senate president with the armed robbers.
According to the police, the suspects alleged to have worked as political thugs for Mr Saraki who allegedly supplied them with armunitions.
Mr Saraki has denied any wrongdoing and alleged victimisation.
In a dramatic twist, however, Mr Akininibosin retracted his earlier stance and accused the police of masterminding his confession which he claims was written for him by police officers.
“I told him my life is at stake here and that I wouldn’t do such. Then, he said I should do that for them and that they’ll pay me and thereafter set me free. I disagreed and was carried back to the cell on his instruction as I couldn’t walk,” it added.
Abba Kyari is the police officer who led the team that arrested the suspects. Mr Kyari has also led his team to effect the arrest of other major crime suspects across Nigeria. He and his team have however, been accused of rights abuses and corruption, charges he has denied.
The paper also quoted Mr Akininibosin as saying that the police intimidated them by killing five men in their presence and ordering them (the accused) to lie on the bodies of the dead people.
“I was shot on my two legs. I was later taken to Abba Kyari office, where he asked to know if I was ready to cooperate and I said yes and pleaded not to kill me. The next day was when Michael Adikwu was brought to identify us and say what connected us together. The dismissed officer said he didn’t know us and after much torture, he was shot dead in our presence.”
The police had confirmed Mr Adikwu’s death in its custody but said he died of natural causes.
According to the paper, the defendant said a journalist was later brought in who took his confessional statement, allegedly made under duress.
“I was panicked, thinking I was next to die. Later, a female TV journalist was brought by a police officer with a note, saying that was what they wanted me to say, and that if not, I will “travel”, meaning, I would be killed.
“That was how I agreed in the presence of the female journalist, who recorded while I was also beaten at interval.”
During cross examination however, the prosecution questioned the facts in the defendants claim, citing parts of the statements attributed to Mr Akininibosin which could only have been known by him.
According to the prosecution lawyer, the witness’ claim that the statement was written for him does not support the authenticity of personal information contained in his witness statement.
Some groups who observed the Kaduna State governorship poll won by Governor Nasir el-Rufai have disclosed that the election was marred by serious irregularities, to win at all cost.
Led by Prof Banake Sambo of the Initiative for the Promotion of Civic Obligation and Sustainable Peace, the group stated this at a press conference on Friday in Kaduna.
Present at the press conference were Sani Umar (The Integrity Friends for Truth and peace initiative), Dr Usman Kabiru (Centre for Strategy Ethics and Value) and Felicia Kwawo (Women Empowerment for Global Impact Initiative).
Sambo alleged massive vote-buying at polling units in Kaduna North, Kaduna South, Ikara and Kubau where Governor el-Rufai got substantial votes.
According to him, card readers were not used for the election in some polling units in 10 LGAs. He listed the LGAs as Giwa, Zaria, Sabon-Gari, Ikara, Lere, Igabi, Soba, Kaduna South and Kaduna North.
He added, “Instances of voters and agents being intimidated; and violent acts aided by the military were [also] noted in Kwasallo ward in Soba LGA…”
The Department of State Services has removed Mr Bashir Abubakar as President Muhammadu Buhari’s Chief Security Officer. He was immediately replaced with Mr Idris Kazeem Ahmed.
According to Presidency insiders, Abubakar will be proceeding on strategic course at the National Defence University (Fadena), Buenos Aires, Argentina as a safe-facing measure.
Security source told The Punch that DSS authorities had directed that the changes should take immediate effect. It was further learnt that the Administrative Officer of the Presidential Villa, Abubakar Maikano, had also been directed to stand in, any time the new CSO is not available.
This is the second time Buhari’s CSO will be replaced since his assumption of office in May 2015.
His first CSO, Abdulrahman Mani, was removed in July 2015 and was replaced with Abubakar.
Abubakar was said to have become a one-man cabal that had become too powerful to the detriment of the interest of the Buhari’s Presidency.
Another presidential source said the removed CSO was almost sacked but for the intervention of some of the friends of the President. Some powerful people were said to have complained about his activities.
For example, The Punch gathered that Abubakar stopped some friends of the President from gaining access to him and was also said to be rude to the current Director-General of the DSS, Yusuf Bichi.
The source said, “I think he was power-drunk. He allowed the position he occupied to enter his head and felt that he got the position by promotion. He was rude and even was responsible for the non-accreditation of some media house at the Villa.
“He talked down on people and even friends of the President had complained bitterly about him.
“He had also had issues with the current DG of the DSS. So, his cup was full. The course is just a face-saving measure.”
The Oyo state government says there was no death recorded in the building collapse incident which occurred in Ibadan, capital of the state, on Friday.
Ayo Arulogun, the state commissioner for information, disclosed this in a statement issued on Saturday morning.
He said the multi-agency rescue operation team set up by Abiola Ajimobi, the governor, was able to achieve the evacuation of all victims from the building, which was under construction at the time of the incident.
The commissioner said the wounded victims, who are in stable condition, have been taken to the hospital.
“Upon hearing the news of the incident, the Governor set up a multi-agency rescue team which promptly swung into action, mobilising equipment, materials and personnel,” the commissioner said.
Arulogunadded that the incident would be investigated by relevant agencies in the state. He also pleaded with building construction practitioners to desist from cutting corners and using cheap materials.
The government spokesperson reiterated the imperative of adhering to approved building plans.
The director-general of Atiku Abubakar’s campaign organisation and former governor of Ogun State Gbenga Daniel has retired from partisan politics, a letter he sent to the PDP leadership on Thursday shows.
The reason for his retirement, he said, were “personal”.
“This is to inform you of my intention to resign from active and partisan politics with effect from today, the 14th day of March 2019,” Daniel said in the letter, a copy of which The Guardian saw on Saturday.
“My decision in this regard is entirely personal to me.”
His move away from politics, Daniel said, will allow him to devote more time to charity and resuscitate his non-partisan political leadership academy, which he established a few years ago.
His move away from politics, Daniel said, will allow him to devote more time to his charity and resuscitate his non-partisan political leadership academy, which he established a few years ago.
Daniel’s letter addressed to the national chairman of the People’s Democratic Party showed his regret at the fortune of the party during the last governorship election in Ogun State.
Daniel threw his weight behind the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, which his party sought to dislodge at the centre.
His support for APC’s Dapo Abiodun, Daniel insisted, was because a court foisted a candidate not acceptable to the leadership of the PDP on it.
“Whereas the national leadership of our party, recognized one candidate for the 2019 election, by court pronouncements another candidate, and in compliance with those court orders, which the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) recognised was on the INEC list,” Daniel said.
“The candidates recognized by INEC were not acceptable to the national leadership of the party. Our situation was then compounded because the candidate which the court and INEC recognised and accepted as valid has also been expelled by the party.”
That situation made him respond to “the yearnings of our people and joined others in emplacing an administration that we believe will better serve the interests of our people than what currently exists.”
Abiodun eventually won the election, defeating APM’s Adekunle Akinlade, who enjoyed the support of the current state governor Ibikunle Amosun, who is a member of APC. (Guardian)