President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday, lamented that corruption was present almost everywhere and at many levels of government.
Buhari said he set up the panel to probe Ibrahim Magu, suspended Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, because of serious allegations against the anti-graft agency.
President Buhari received report of Judicial Commission of Inquiry on the Investigation of Mr Ibrahim Magu, Acting Chairman of EFCC (May 2015-May 2020) at the State House, Abuja.
Speaking while receiving the report of the panel headed by retired Justic Ayo Salami, Buhari said his administration will cut off any stream that supports the growth of corruption.
“As a government, and in furtherance of our anti-corruption programme, we have since inception engaged in many reforms in removing corruption including but not limited to the enforcement of Treasury Single Account, strict implementation of the Bank Verification Number policy and signing unto the Open Government Partnership. A lot of efforts have gone into building and development of our anti-corruption institutions.
“We have so far kept faith with our promise and shall remain committed until Nigeria triumphs over the evil of corruption, attain a prosperous economic status, and surmounts her security challenges.
“However, the stark reality of widespread corruption becomes poignant when allegations of corruption touch on the leadership of an institution set up by law to coordinate and enforce all economic and financial crimes. It is an abomination that strikes at the root and undermines the government’s anti-corruption programme.
“It was in response to the serious allegations against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission that I set up a panel headed by Justice Isa Ayo Salami, retired President of the Court of Appeal, via an Instrument dated 3rd July 2020 pursuant to the Tribunals of Inquiry Act (Cap T21, LFN, 2004),” a statement by Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the President, Femi Adesina, read.
Justice Salami disclosed that the commission also embarked on a nationwide physical verification of recovered forfeited assets, comprising real estates, automobiles, vessels and non-cash assets.
He commended the President for the initiative to dispose all forfeited assets “because of the poor condition of the assets we saw during our physical verification nationwide.”
Noting that the four chairmen of EFCC since inception were from the police, the retired Justice of the Court of Appeal also recommended that in appointing a new chairman, consideration should be given to candidates from other law enforcement or security agencies and a core staff of the EFCC as provided in the EFCC establishment Act of 2004.
Reps summon British envoy over Gowon, probe alleged payroll infractions
The House of Representatives, yesterday, summoned the British High Commissioner, Catriona Laing, over the claim by a member of the country’s parliament, Tom Tugendhat, that former Head of State, Gen. Yakubu Gowon (rtd), allegedly looted half of the treasury in the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) when he held sway.
Adopting a motion sponsored by Yusuf Gagdi under matters of urgent importance at the plenary presided over by Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila, the lower legislative chamber described the allegation, by chair of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee of the House of Commons, as a “deliberate action aimed at breaching the peace in Nigeria.”
The lawmakers said it was incumbent on the British envoy to explain why despite demands from citizens and government of Nigeria, Great Britain had failed to offer an apology for Tugendhat’s utterances.
They flayed the Briton for abusing parliamentary privilege to “disparage the person of General Yakubu Gowon, and to make statements against him which in other circumstances would be libelous and subject to sanction.”
The House, therefore, demanded a public apology from Tugendhat, and mandated Gbajabiamila to write his House of Commons counterpart, stating Nigeria’s position on the matter.
Gagdi, while moving the motion, argued that Tugendhat, at the time of the debate, never provided any evidence to back his weighty claim.
He regretted that the parliamentarian threw caution to the winds unmindful of the strong ties between both countries.
ALSO, the House Committee on Public Accounts (PAC) is launching a probe into allegations that the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) was riddled with irregularities reportedly leading to alleged non-payment of salaries and allowances of federal civil servants
The Wole Oke-led panel initiated the inquest in the course of engaging tertiary institutions and other agencies on their financial audit reports for 2018-2019.
The committee was alarmed to observe leakages and sharp practices.
The legislators expressed reservations at the report of J.S. Tarkar University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Benue State.
Oke (PDP: Osun) made the disclosure while drilling Rector of Auchi Polytechnic, Edo State, Dr. Zubair Mustapha, on expenditure and audits of the tertiary institution for the period under review.
Mustapha told the committee that pending salaries for the years in question were due to anomalies in the IPPIS, a payroll system, introduced by President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration in 2017.
“The backlog of salaries is from people who were not captured by IPPIS,” he added.
In a swift reaction, the panel chair said: “That’s why we must look into IPPIS. We were told here that the salaries of personnel of the University of Agriculture, Makurdi (Benue State) went into accounts of staff of Jigawa State. IPPIS must be investigated to detect some of the irregularities observed in the system. We have observed some serious irregularities in the system.”
The committee eventually resolved to write the Minister of Finance and Accountant General of the Federation to explain the alleged sleaze.
Boko Haram Gives Reason For Killing Farmers In Zabarmari, Issues New Warning
Boko Haram Claims Responsibility For Zabarmari Massacre In A New Video
Abubakar Shekau’s faction of Boko Haram, Jama’atu Ahlussunnah Lidda’awati Wal Jihad, has released a new video in which it claims responsibility for killing 78 farmers in Zabarmari area of Borno State, Northeast Nigeria on Saturday.
HumAngle reported that the migrant farmers from Sokoto State, North-western Nigeria, were tied and slaughtered by the terrorists.
The terrorists had also burnt the farm they were cultivating after beheading them one after another.
In the new released three minutes 37-second video, titled “رسالة جديدة” (a new message), Boko Haram accused the farmers of arresting one of its members and handing him to the Nigerian military.
“You think you can nab our brother and hand him to soldiers and live in peace,” a masked commander of the group asked in the video.
“You think Allah will forget what you have done to our brother,” he asked rhetorically.
He also warned those who had arrested Boko Haram terrorists or has been spying against them to await a similar fate.
“The third message is on those who notoriously nab our brethren and hand them to the military or give them a clue on us,” he warned.
“You should know that, unless you repent, what happened to your people is awaiting you.”
Zabarmari is located less than 20 kilometres from the Counter-Insurgency Operation Lafiya Dole command centre in Maiduguri, the state capital.
On Sunday, 43 victims of the massacre were given a mass burial led by the state governor Babagana Umara Zulum.
HumAngle spoke to one of the survivors in which he narrated what happened some moments before the farmers were beheaded.
Gov Obiano Begins Dustribution of Christmas Rice to Anambra Workers
The Governor of Anambra State, Chief Willie Obiano has flagged off the distribution of rice to public and civil servants in Anambra state ahead of the Christmas celebration.
During a brief ceremony to mark the event at Jerome Udoji secretariat, Awka, Governor Obiano reiterated the commitment of his administration to worker’s welfare.
He said that welfare of workers has been one of the priorities of his administration since inception in 2014.
According to him, “worker’s welfare has been a top priority of this administration. We have always ensured that worker’s salaries are paid on the 25th of every month”.
Going further, Gov Obiano said that 2020 will be remembered with some sadness due to the hardship occassioned by Covid-19 pandemic and the unfortunate incidents that followed the #endsars protests.
“But we are not deterred”, he declared. “Though Nigeria is officially in recession and revenue from federal government and internal sources are on the decline, we made a commitment to you and we will continue to uphold it.
“That is why we have paid the leave allowances of all workers in November and we are prepared to pay December salaries before Christmas. In addition, we have made provision for every worker in Anambra to go home with a bag of rice.
“We survived the past recession by reflating the state economy using the N20m community choose your project initiative. This year we intend to do same. The ripple effect of early payment of salaries will initiate the required velocity of money to ensure that money circulates in the state. This will keep our economy above the recession line”.
Gov Obiano also encouraged the workers to show more dedication to duty and curb wastage. He assured them that government will continue to support them and ensure that the Christmas and new year festivities are celebrated in a peaceful and safe environment.
Responding, Head of Service of Anambra State, Barr Harry Uduh, thanked Gov Obiano and encouraged the workers to be more diligent and committed to helping the government record greater achievements.
The event witnessed the presentation of seven recipients of the Nigeria Public Sector Leadership and Productivity Award from the Anambra state civil and public service, to the Governor, for special recognition.
The awardees include MD/CEO ABS, Chief Uche Nworah PhD, Dr Emmanuel Ude-Akpeh, Mrs Carol Njaka, Mrs Stephnie Keri-Uzo, Ngozi Onuorah, Mr Adebayo Oyejinka and Mr Uchenna Ezeani.
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