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[Update] Finally, Buhari Fires Suspended SGF, NIA Boss |The Republican News

Babachir-Lawal-Ayo-Oke
                                  Babachir Lawal, Amb. Ayo Oke

Olalekan Adetayo, Abuja

President Muhammadu Buhari has finally sacked the suspended Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal; and the Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency, Ambassador Ayo Oke.

The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, disclosed this in a statement on Monday.

The sacking of the two government officials was based on the report of a three-man panel led by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo that investigated them.

Adesina said Buhari has subsequently appointed Mr. Boss Mustapha as the new SGF.

The statement read, “President Muhammadu Buhari has studied the report of the panel headed by the Vice President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, which investigated allegations against the suspended Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Babachir David Lawal, and the Director-General, National Intelligence Agency, Ambassador Ayo Oke.

Related: Ikoyi $43.4m: Osinbanjo Panel Compiles List Of Invitees |The Republican News

“The President accepted the recommendation of the panel to terminate the appointment of Mr. Lawal, and has appointed Mr. Boss Mustapha as the new Secretary to the Government of the Federation. The appointment takes immediate effect.”

“President Buhari also approved the recommendation to terminate the appointment of Ambassador Oke, and has further approved the setting up of a three-member panel to, among other things, look into the operational, technical and administrative structure of the Agency and make appropriate recommendations.”

Related: Grass-cutting Probe: Contracts Awarded To 20 ‘Ghost’ Firms, Says Senate Panel

Mustapha from Adamawa State is a lawyer, management consultant, politician and businessman.

Buhari had in June 2016 appointed him the Managing Director of the National Inland Waterways Authority.

The President had on April 19 suspended the two government officials and constituted a three-man committee led by Osinbajo, to investigate them.

The panel investigated allegations of violations of law and due process made against Lawal in the award of contracts under the Presidential Initiative on the North-East while it probed Oke on the discovery of large amounts of foreign and local currencies by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in a residential apartment at Osborne Towers, Ikoyi, Lagos, for which NIA is laying claim.

The committee had the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN); and the National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno, as members. (Punch)

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Fayose Threatens To Sue Osinbajo, Demands Report On Suspended SGF, NIA DG

 ayodelefayose1
                      Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose

Kamarudeen Ogundele, Ado Ekiti

The Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, has written the Acting President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, demanding the release of the report of the panel that investigated corruption allegations against the suspended Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr David Babachir Lawal.

The Chairman, Peoples Democratic Party Governors Forum, who also demanded the release of the report on the Director-General, National Intelligence Agency, Mr Ayo Oke, threatened to sue Osinbanjo if he failed to meet his demands and “act expeditiously on the report.”

The governor stated this in a July 11 letter received at the Acting President’s office on July 13.

According to a statement by the Special Assistant to the governor on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, Fayose told the Acting President “never to harbour the view that the matter can be swept under the carpet.”

He added, “The government’s war against corruption lacked credibility and had, thus floundered because of the government perceived penchant for sweeping allegations of corruption against top functionaries of the federal government and members of the ruling All Progressives Congress.

“I dare to say that this is one of the reasons the so-called war against corruption has not attracted public support. It lacks credibility and has, thus floundered. It is also the reason your administration has lost case after case in the court of law, even though administration officials have tried to cover government’s Achilles heel as well as their own howling incompetence under the pretence of corruption fighting back,” the governor said.

Fayose, who commended Osinbajo for “yeoman efforts” to quell agitation all over the country and stabilising the polity, said he had refused to join those promoting disunity for their selfish interests, and decided to queue behind him to assist his noble efforts.

“… let all hands be on the deck to salvage our beloved country, take solace and receive renewed strength, vigour and vitality in the fact that your efforts have begun to yield positive fruits and that the vast majority of the citizens appreciate and applaud your efforts and stand resolutely with you. As I have often said, the power of the people is greater than the power of those of us in power.

“In our own little corner, we, too, stand with you. And this being so, you can only succeed, and not fail!

“Therefore, every support and every advice that Your Excellency requires to succeed we promise we will not hide away from you, partisan politics notwithstanding.”

Fayose said it would be most unfortunate if the report is swept under the carpet.

“The preferential treatment given to the two top-notch members of your government is bad enough – and they are the only members of the ruling party that have got this slap-on-the-wrist treatment. So reckless and audacious had your government become in this regard that a serving Senator who is a member of your party said on the floor of the Senate that your government uses insecticides when dealing with alleged cases of corruption involving members of the opposition but applies deodorant when members of the ruling party are involved.

The governor urged the Acting President to do the needful and not let the absence of the president be the reason for not acting on the report.

The letter added, “Were President Buhari to be around, this issue would not have been any of your bothers. All that would have been required of you would be to turn in your report within the stipulated time and the ball would then have been squarely in the president’s court.

“Fortunately and unfortunately, President Buhari has been away on medical tourism for the most part of this year and as the Acting President, the buck now stops on your desk. Your Excellency, Nigerians demand two actions from you: First is that you release the report of the corruption investigation, which you presided over. Secondly is that you act expeditiously on the report. May I advise, Your Excellency, that you should never harbour the view that this matter can be swept under the carpet for two reasons.

“One is that Nigerians are not unmindful of the outcome of your investigation even if it has not been officially released. Two is that should you fail to release the report and act on it, I shall approach the law court to compel you to do so.

“Your Excellency, as a Law professor and Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Your Excellency must not be associated with illegalities and cover-ups; not to talk of your highly exalted position as a man of God who must speak the truth at all times and uphold the Biblical admonition to let justice flow like the mighty river. I have refused to agree with those who, on account of your egregious stance on the EFCC boss, Ibrahim Magu’s continued but illegal stay in office; posit that the hood does not make the monk and a chain of titles and degrees does not translate to sound judgment. Kindly take up the challenge to prove those doubting Thomases wrong.

“Your Excellency, because of our dear country, Nigeria, the concern of all of its 170 million citizens as well as for the benefit of our friends the world over, permit me to make copies of this letter available to the media and other interested persons and organisations locally and internationally.” (Punchng.com)

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Suspended SGF, Babachir Lawal, Face Prison, As Senate Makes Disturbing Revelation

 

babachir-lawal

The Nigerian Senate Committee report, on Wednesday, has revealed how the suspended SGF, Babachir Lawal, racked in billions of Naira through shady deals, in the Presidential Initiative for the North-East, PINE.

The Committee report revealed that after receiving payments from PINE, at least five companies separately paid about N450 million to the Eco Bank account (182001809) of Rholavision Engineering Limited, owned by Mr. Lawal, according to CAC and self-admission, as well as his private account (0003004417) with Diamond Bank, bank statements showed.

Related: Kickback: SGF’s Company Allegedly Recieved N200m In 20 Instalments |The Republican News

According to a Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, confirmation attached to the report, Lawal was still the signatory to the account of Rholavision, until February 15, 2017, which shares the same Bank Verification Number with his personal account, and 13 other accounts in commercial banks.

Here are the companies and transactions details:

1. Between March 29, 2016 and April 20, 2016, Josmon Technologies Limited transferred N317 million to Rholavision after receiving two “grass-cutting” contracts worth N530.6 million for the removal of invasive plant species in Yobe State.

The transfers were made in tranches, mostly N10 million per transaction, and N47 million on the last day.

2. For the “grass-cutting” contract, Lawal’s Rholavision was awarded the consultancy contract on March 8, 2016, while the owner was in the service of the government as federal cabinet secretary, in breach of Nigeria’s code of conduct for public officers and the Public Procurement Act.

But apart from that contract which formed the basis of the call by the Senate that  Lawal be removed and prosecuted by President Muhammadu Buhari last December, the suspended SGF was also into other fraudulent deals with companies using PINE as conduit pipe.

3. For instance, on August 8, 2016, JMT Global Technologies Ltd transferred N30 million from its Zenith Bank account 114357188 to Rholavision. Then, JMT had just got eight contracts for “rehabilitations/renovations in Adamawa” State for the sum of N199.4 million.

4. Also Messrs Adamawa Boreholes and Drilling Companies Ltd transferred N18 million to Mr. Lawal’s company, after clinching N54.8 million contract to renovate seven classrooms at Yeskule Girls Secondary School, Michika Adamawa State.

5. Similarly, Barde Brothers Multi-Services Limited which was also awarded seven contracts to renovate classrooms in Adamawa State for N145 million returned N71 million to Mr. Lawal’s company account on October 10, 2016, and another N13 million between July 7, 2016 and September 9, 2016 to his private account.               (Post-Nigeria)

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President Buhari Suspends SGF And DG, NIA |The Republican News

President-Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered an investigation into the allegations of violations of law and due process made against the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr. David Babachir Lawal, in the award of contracts under the Presidential Initiative on the North East (PINE).
The President has also directed the suspension of the SGF from office pending the outcome of the investigations.
In a related development, the President has ordered a full-scale investigation into the discovery of large amounts of foreign and local currencies by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in a residential apartment at Osborne Towers, Ikoyi, Lagos, over which the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) has made a claim.
The investigation is also to enquire into the circumstances in which the NIA came into possession of the funds, how and by whose or which authority the funds were made available to the NIA, and to establish whether or not there has been a breach of the law or security procedure in obtaining custody and use of the funds.
The President has also directed the suspension of the Director General of the NIA, Ambassador Ayo Oke, pending the outcome of the investigation.
A three-man Committee comprising the Hon. Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, and the National Security Adviser, headed by the Vice President, is to conduct both investigations.
The Committee is to submit its report to the President within 14 days.
The most senior Permanent Secretary in the SGF’s office and the most senior officer in the NIA are to act, respectively, during the period of investigation.
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SGF, Babachir Lawal Makes U-turn Begs Senate |The Republican News

 Ghost companies awarded contracts, says Sani

From Fred Itua,  Abuja

Twenty four hours after the Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF), David Babachir Lawal, told senators  he would not honour an invitation extended to him by the Senate ad-hoc Committee on Mounting Humanitarian Crisis in the North East, he has made a U-turn.

Instead of standing by his earlier position not to honour the invitation, the SGF has begged the Senator Shehu Sani-led committee members to reschedule the meeting for a latter date, claiming that there was “a pressing engagement of government, which clashed with the date and time of the hearing.”

Lawal had, in a letter, dated March 22, 2017 and addressed to the committee, through its chairman, Senator Sani, said he would not appear before the committee.

In the letter, he explained that he had already gone to court to challenge the committee’s invitation.

According to the earlier letter from the committee inviting the SGF, he was expected to appear, as part of the ongoing investigation into claims that funds earmarked for humanitarian crisis in the North-East were mismanaged.

The letter from the adhoc committee read: “The Senate, at its sitting on 4th October, 2016, debated on a motion, “Mounting Humanitarian Crisis in the North East” after which an ad-hoc committee was constituted.

“The committee was to conduct a public hearing in order to ascertain how much has been released to the Presidential Initiative on the North East (PINE) and also to ascertain how these funds have been utilised from inception to date.

“The committee was also expected to investigate the diversion of grains and other food items from the Strategic Grain Reserves, NEMA and other sources for the IDPs. “Consequently, the committee held a three-day public hearing between December 6th and 8th 2016, even though some of the invited stakeholders refused to attend.”

Lawal, in the new letter, did not make any reference to the suit he claimed to have filed in a law court.

Part of the new letter reads: “I wish to kindly request that you (Sani) draw the attention of the other members of the committee that l will not be able to appear before the committee. I kindly request a rescheduling of the hearing, please.”

Senator Sani, while reacting to the issue, yesterday, told journalists that more than half of the 20 companies, which were awarded contracts by the office of the SGF, have no verifiable addresses. He said they were ghost companies.

According to him, the adhoc committee will fix a new date, which will be convenient for every party involved in the ongoing investigation, saying the public hearing cannot be concluded without the appearance of the SGF, since his office awarded the said contracts. (The Sun)

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Forward Your Report On SGF To ICPC, Falana Tells Senate |The Republican News

 Our Reporter

Image result for Femi Falana

 

Lagos lawyer Mr. Femi Falana (SAN) yesterday urged the Senate to send its report indicting Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) Babachir David Lawal, for alleged abuse of office, to the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Offences Commission (ICPC “without any further delay”
In a statement, he said this was necessary “since the findings of the Senate have not been challenged by the federal government.”
Falana said: “With respect, the Presidency made a mistake in asking the Senate to “pardon” the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Babachir David Lawal who has not denied the grave allegations of corruption made against him. Unlike Mr. Ibrahim Magu whose nomination is subject to the confirmation of the Senate Mr. Lawal was recommended for removal and prosecution by the Senate. So the Senate cannot ignore or set aside the findings of the Senator Shehu Sanni-led Committee on Mounting Humanitarian Crisis in the North East region.
“However, the criminal diversion of funds earmarked for the provision of relief materials to provide succour for internally displaced people is akin to crimes against humanity.
“Therefore, the former public officers who stole the fund allocated for the purchase of weapons to fight the Boko Haram terrorists and the serving public officers who diverted the fund earmarked for the rehabilitation of internally displaced persons deserve to be prosecuted in like manner by the federal government which has said that there would be no sacred cows in the fight against corruption.
“To that extent any attempt to sweep the serious allegations of corrupt practices involving the Secretary to the Government of the Fedeation, Mr Babachir David Lawal, under the carpet will create a moral crisis for the war against corruption and impunity in the country.” (The Nation)

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