Malabu $1.1 billion Scandal: Court orders OPL 245 returned to Nigerian government

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has secured a court order mandating the return of OPL 245 to the Nigerian government.

 

The order was granted by Justice John Tsoho of the Federal High Court on Thursday morning, pending “the conclusion of investigations…” by the EFCC.

 

OPL 245, considered the largest oil block in Africa with over 9 billion barrels of crude, has been a subject of investigations in at least five different countries.

 

Two oil giants, Shell and Eni, in 2011 paid about $1.1 billion into a Nigerian government account in London to take control of the oil block.

 

Over 70 per cent of the money was subsequently transferred in controversial circumstances into Malabu accounts controlled by a former petroleum minister, Dan Etete. Mr. Etete transferred over half of what he got into accounts of phoney companies controlled by Aliyu Abubakar, a man wanted for fraud in Italy and whom the EFCC already charged for fraud.

 

Mr. Abubakar is believed to be a front for several top officials of the Goodluck Jonathan administration including Mr. Jonathan and his attorney general, Bello Adoke.

 

Both men have denied any wrongdoings.

 

The EFCC had in December last year filed fraud and money laundering charges against Messrs. Etete, Abubakar, and Adoke.

 

A week after, Italian prosecutors also indicated their decision to file charges against Shell and Eni, their officials, and Mr. Etete for their roles in the scandal.

 

Source: Premium Times

Obanikoro in Fresh N450m Poll Cash Scandal

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Wednesday quizzed a former Minister of State for Defence, Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, for allegedly receiving N450m from the Coordinator of the Goodluck Jonathan Campaign Organisation in Lagos State, Adewale Onilere, during the countdown to the 2015 presidential election.

Operatives disclosed that the N450m was part of the N23bn ($115m) allegedly disbursed to the leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party in the 36 states of the federation by a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke.

A source at the EFCC told our correspondent that Onilere, who is the Chairman of the PDP in the Somolu Local Government Area, received N650m from the campaign organisation out of which N450m was given to Obanikoro.

He said, “Onilere received N650m and then delivered N450m to Obanikoro at his house. Onilere gave Obanikoro the money in the presence of some PDP leaders.

“So, on Wednesday, we invited Obanikoro to tell his side of the story. However, Obanikoro denied receiving any money from Onilere.

“Since Obanikoro is currently on administrative bail, we let him go. However, we have invited Obanikoro and Onilere to come to our office in two weeks’ time to face each other. Surely, we will get to the bottom of this.”

In a terse text message, however, Onilere denied handling stolen funds.

“It is certainly false and I know nothing about it. Thanks,” he said.

Obanikoro and his two sons, Babajide and Gbolahan, are currently under a separate investigation involving N4.7bn which was allegedly diverted from the Office of the National Security Adviser.

The ONSA, under the leadership of the then National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.), was alleged to have paid N4.7bn into the bank account of a company, Sylvan McNamara, in which Obanikoro’s sons were directors.

Obanikoro had said in his statement on oath at the EFCC that after receiving the money in June 2014, he gave N1.219bn to the then governorship candidate of the PDP in Ekiti State, Mr. Ayodele Fayose; while N1.3bn was given to the PDP candidate in Osun State, Senator Iyiola Omisore.

He also confessed to giving Fayose a separate $5.377m at Spotless Hotel in Ekiti State in the presence of party stalwarts including the then Ekiti State PDP Secretary, Mr. Tope Aluko.

Obanikoro was said to have kept about N785m for himself, which he allegedly spent while campaigning ahead of the PDP governorship primary in Lagos State, which Mr. Jimi Agbaje won.

However, the EFCC asked him to return about N584m of which he has already returned N137m.

Jibrin Writes Buhari Over Budget Padding Scandal

Suspended lawmaker, Abdulmumin Jibrin, has written an open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari, imploring him to end his long silence about the budget fraud allegations in the House of Representatives.

It is the first time the embattled lawmaker will write directly to the president since the controversy broke out —and he used it to attack Speaker Yakubu Dogara and other usual targets.

In the letter, Mr. Jibrin said he decided to write the president and copy the public after all his efforts to have an audience with the him were frustrated.

“I write this letter to you as a last resort to seek action on the allegations of budget fraud, abuse of office and corruption I levelled against Speaker Yakubu Dogara and three other Principal Officers of the House of Representatives,” Mr. Jibrin said.

The letter came a few days after he said he’d gone on exile partly because of the president’s reluctance to intervene in the scandal which has been rocking the National Assembly for four months.

“The silence of the presidency is no longer sending the right message to Nigerians and the international community,” Mr. Jibrin said in a statement on November 7.

In his letter on Friday, Mr. Jibrin, who was suspended on September 28 over his face off with lawmakers, informed the president about alleged sharp practices of House members and called on him to act.

“Your Excellency, the House of Representatives stinks of corruption and something urgent must be done to salvage the situation,” Mr. Jibrin said. “We have a golden opportunity to show the world that there is zero tolerance for corruption under your leadership.”

Mr. Jibrin said the president should order prioritised investigation into the padding claims with a focus on bringing culpable members to justice.

“I pray that you direct the various agencies that I submitted petitions to expedite action on the matter as Nigerians and the world are watching to see how we will deal with this issue of incontrovertible corruption by Speaker Dogara and others and systemic corruption in the House,” Mr. Jibrin said.

Mr. Dogara’s spokesman, Turaki Hassan, declined comments on Friday night. But his principal has repeatedly denied all the allegations of budget padding against him.

The demands for Mr. Buhari’s intervention stand in sharp contrast from Mr. Jibrin’s October 1 statement in which he described the president’s silence as “a blessing in disguise.”

“If Mr. President had jumped into the matter at the early stage, trust Nigerians, they would have concluded that the presidency is using me to fight the House,” Mr. Jibrin said in his Independence Day statement. ”Such perception and blackmail would have been difficult to deal with.”

The lawmaker went on exile last week, sparking speculation that he fled the country to avoid a pending charges against him by the authorities.

But he denied fleeing from prosecution, said he travelled because his safety was not guaranteed in Nigeria and he’ll return to the country when invited to testify in the budget fraud investigation.

“I will be available once my attention is required in respect of my petition against the Speaker and others or any petition that may come against me,” he said.

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South Korean President Denies Following Cult As Scandal Continues

The South Korean President, Park Geun-hye, has publicly denied falling victim to a religious cult as scandal threatens to engulf her leadership.

Appearing close to tears in a televised address, she apologised for allowing a long-standing friend inappropriate access to government policy-making.

She agreed to be questioned over the scandal but did not offer to resign.

Choi Soon-sil is suspected of using their friendship to solicit donations to a non-profit fund she controlled.

Ms Choi is in detention facing charges of fraud and abuse of power.

 The main opposition party said the president’s apology lacked sincerity and it called on Ms Park to step back from state affairs.

Scuffles broke out between police and demonstrators demanding Ms Park’s resignation in central Seoul on Friday.

Read More: BBC

Suspended Jibrin Marks 100 Days Of Budget Padding Scandal By Distributing Gifts To Constituents

Suspended lawmaker, Abdulmumin Jibrin, on Wednesday distributed cash and material gifts as part of an empowerment scheme to mark the 100 days of budget padding scandal.

Mr. Jibrin, who is currently serving a year suspension slammed on him by the House of Representatives, returned to his constituency in Kano on Wednesday, where he gave out items such as motorcycles and generators.

Other items distributed by Mr. Jibrin included sewing machines, grinding machines as well as scholarship package for about 1,000 pupils.

A statement from Mr. Jibrin’s media office said no fewer than 5,000 constituents benefitted from the scheme, which he hopes would help mitigate the effect of the economic recession on their households.

“I have done many empowerment programmes before I ventured into politics, I continued when I was elected and I sustain the tempo despite my suspension.

“This is a clear testimony that we hold our people dear to our heart irrespective of politics,” the statement quoted Mr. Jibrin as saying.

Mr. Jibrin said he will not renege on his promise to remain a vocal voice against sharp practices in the Nigerian parliament.

The whistleblower was suspended for a year without pay on September 21 after being found guilty of ethics violations.

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Judge Ofili-Ajumogobia Busted In Fake Hospital Admission Scandal

A Federal High Court judge, Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia, has been busted by detectives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in a hospital admission racket in Lagos. Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia on Wednesday morning told EFC officials by phone that she was on admission in a Lagos hospital in Ikoyi to explain away the reason she could not respond to the anti-graft agency’s invitation for interrogation in the last two days.

A Federal High Court judge, Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia, has been busted by detectives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in a hospital admission racket in Lagos.

Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia on Wednesday morning told EFC officials by phone that she was on admission in a Lagos hospital in Ikoyi to explain away the reason she could not respond to the anti-graft agency’s invitation for interrogation in the last two days.

Five other judges, Mohammed Nasir Yunusa, Hyeladzira Ajiya Nganjiwa, Appellate Court Judge, Uwani Abba-Aji, Justice Agbadu James Fishim and Musa Haruna Kurya had in the past two days responded to EFCC invitations.  Some of the judges were accompanied by their lawyers and were reported to be cooperating with EFCC operatives investigating alleged corruption in Nigeria’s judicial system.

Curiously, Ofili-Ajumogobia, one of the invited judges expected to show up at the commission on Tuesday called in on Wednesday to claim she was admitted into the “intensive care unit” of Golden Cross Hospital on Bourdillon Road in Ikoyi but an attempt by EFCC agents to pay her a “courtesy call” shows that she had not been to the hospital since October 13, 2016.

EFCC detectives, however, found that a medical staff of the hospital was trying to insert her name into their records as their patient.

When they could find her in the hospital they called her on her mobile phone to ask where she was; she restated that she was in the intensive care unit only to cut off the call as soon as EFCC officials told her they have searched the private hospital and couldn’t find her.

EFCC officials told Saharareporters that the medical director of the hospital has been invited to the commission’s office in Ikoyi to explain his role in the latest saga.

Ekweremadu agrees to stand surety for Metuh over alleged N400m fraud

Embattled National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Chief Olisa Metuh, who is facing trial over alleged N400million fraud, on Monday, prayed the Federal High Court in Abuja to allow the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, to stand surety for him.

Metuh is answering to a seven-count charge the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, preferred against him and his firm, Destra Investment Limited.

The anti-graft agency alleged that the defendants had prior to the 2015 presidential election, received N400m from the Office of the National Security Adviser, ONSA, without executing any contract.

It said the fund which was released to Metuh and his firm by the erstwhile NSA, Col. Sambo Dasuki, retd,? ?was part of about $2.1billion earmarked for the purchase of arms to fight insurgency in the North East.

Meanwhile, at the resumed sitting on Monday, Metuh, through his lawyer, Dr. Onyechi Ikpeazu, SAN, notified the court of his intention to use Ekweremadu as one of his sureties.

He made the application on a day his former surety, Dr. Olugbumi Usim-Wilson, also applied to withdraw his services.

NIS Scandal: We will invoke ‘Alekwu’ gods on Abba Moro’s Persecutors – Idoma Group

A group under the aegis of Okela Kach’Idoma has threatened to invoke the gods of the land, ‘Alekwu’ on anyone behind the prosecution of their son and former minister of Interior, Abba Moro.

Moro is currently facing trial alongside three others on an 11-count charge bordering on procurement fraud and money laundering over the failed 2014 Nigerian Immigration Service recruitment exercise.
The group said the prosecution was politically motivated just to rubbish the image of the son, Moro.
Addressing newsmen Thursday in Otukpo, the national president of Okela Kach’Idoma, Gabriel Adejor Ogidi, said the people of the Idoma community were not happy with the way Moro was being rubbished in the media.

Accroding to Ogidi, Moro, who is happily married with children, would not set out to organize any exercise that would lead to the death of other people’s children.

The group also faulted the earlier claim by the Comptroller- General of Immigration and Principal Witness (PW1) to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC),Mr. David Paradang that he was not a member of the Steering Committee which conducted the ill-fated recruitment exercise.

“How is that possible? Paradang was in charge of Immigration during the recruitment exercise and as such he cannot deny knowledge of the entire process.
“Now the truth is out. It has been discovered that the former Immigration Boss was actually a Member of the Steering Committee which conducted the ill-fated recruitment exercise. Who is lying now?

“The truth is that he is being used to pull Moro down. The whole drama is staged just to tarnish the image of our son and we will not hesitate invoke the wrath of Alekwu K’Idoma on anyone trying to persecute Comrade Moro,” Ogidi said.

He called on President Muhammadu Buhari not to allow his good image and that of his administration, which he had built for years to be rubbished by some persons he tagged enemies of progress.

“We are calling on the peoples’ president, Muhammadu Buhari to intervene into the case in order not to allow his reputation and that of his government be dragged into the mud,” he added.

Sam Allardyce: England Manager Allegations Investigated By FA

The Football Association is investigating allegations England manager Sam Allardyce used his role to negotiate a £400,000 deal and offer advice on how to “get around” rules on player transfers.

The Telegraph has footage it says is from August of Allardyce meeting men claiming to represent a Far East firm where he appears to say third-party ownership rules can be avoided.

The 61-year-old has yet to respond to the allegations, while the FA has asked to see the paper’s filmed recordings.

It will meet on Tuesday morning when new chairman Greg Clarke and chief executive Martin Glenn must decide whether the issue is one of poor judgement or something more serious.

“I want all the facts, to hear everything from everyone and make a judgement about what to do,” Clarke told the Daily Mail.

“Natural justice requires us to get to the bottom of the issues before we make any decision. It is not appropriate to pre-judge the issue. With things like this you have to take a deep breath.”

Third-party ownership of players was banned by the FA in 2008.

During the meeting with the businessmen, who were undercover reporters, it is alleged Allardyce – who was only named England boss in July – said it was “not a problem” to bypass the rules and he knew of agents who were “doing it all the time”.

It is alleged by the paper that a deal was struck with the England boss worth £400,000 for him to represent the company to Far East investors, and to be a keynote speaker at events.

Allardyce tells the undercover reporters any arrangement would have to be cleared by the FA.

Third-party ownership, in which investment companies take a stake in the economic rights of players, was described as a form of “slavery” by Michel Platini, the former president of European football’s governing body Uefa.

World football’s governing body Fifa banned the practice in May last year.

Allardyce attended the meeting with the fictitious businessmen in London along with his agent, Mark Curtis, and his financial adviser, Shane Moloney.

During the meeting he said Enner Valencia had been under a third-party ownership agreement when he signed the Ecuador forward for £12m for West Ham from Mexican club Pachuca in 2014, but that the third-party ownership ended on the transfer and the Hammers acquired the player “whole”.

Curtis and Moloney have not yet responded to the allegations.

In the Telegraph recording, Allardyce also refers to predecessor Roy Hodgson, as “Woy”, referencing his speech impediment.

He also criticises former assistant coach Gary Neville – saying Hodgson should have told him to “sit down and shut up” – as well as the FA’s decision to “stupidly” rebuild Wembley Stadium at a cost of £870m.

Former Blackpool, Notts County, Bolton, Newcastle, Blackburn, West Ham and Sunderland manager Allardyce succeeded Hodgson, who quit after England were knocked out of Euro 2016 in the last 16 by Iceland.

He has had just one game in charge of the national side – a 1-0 win over Slovakia in a World Cup qualifier earlier this month. 

He is due to name his squad on Sunday for the forthcoming World Cup qualifiers, including his first Wembley match in charge against Malta on 8 October (17:00 BST kick-off).

Read More : BBC.COM

Scandal Rocks IDP Camp as Female IDPs Offer Camp Officials Sex For Food

Given the living condition of Internally Displaced Person’s (IDPS’s) in the North East, there is an indication that about 66 percent of camp officials, 28 percent from host communities and 6 percent of elders are sexually molesting the vulnerable ones, a situational

Assessment survey on IDP’s in North-East conducted by NOI Polls has revealed.

NOIPolls, incorporated in 2007 has been in the forefront of championing public opinion research in Nigeria and across the West African sub-region in technical partnership with Gallup (USA).

Among startling revelations from the report is that some of the female IDPs voluntarily offer camp officials sex for food and for freedom of movement within and outside the camps just as others offer themselves for basic female sanitary requirements.

The major aim of the survey was to highlight the controversies surrounding the general welfare of IDP’s in the North-East. It was conducted between July 4th to July 29th, 2016 where a total of 400 contacts attempted the questions.

A breakdown of the report indicated that 190 respondents were drawn from Borno, 128 in Adamawa and 82 in Yobe states.

The respondents were aged between 18 years and above while the face-to-face survey technique enabled NOIPolls to capture the reality of the IDPs.

According to the findings, “Though the provision of firewood is the responsibility of local government areas and State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) as stipulated in the Memorandum of

Understanding signed between federal government and state government, thousands of IDP’s including lactating mothers, children and elderly starve due to the absence of firewood.

The survey however revealed increase in social vices at the camps like drug abuse, consumption of illicit drugs, prostitution and petty crime as a result of the general poor welfare and deplorable living conditions of the IDPs.

“There are also rising cases of unwanted pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and HIV/AIDs while some IDP’s had fallen prey to unscrupulous members of host communities who take advantage of their plight to force them into early marriages and even kidnap them for child labour”, the report added.

The report highlighted that 85 percent of IDPs in Adamawa and 84 percent in Yobe are facing incidences of discrimination compared to 76 percent in Borno which was linked to ethnic problems that had existed between the northern and southern Borno natives.

Presenting the survey, the Chief Executive Officer of NOIPolls, Dr Bell Ihua confirmed that only 10 to 20 percent of IDP’s lived in camps while 80 to 90 percent lived in host communities stressing that petty crimes and drug abuse were also on the increase at the camps.

Ihua regretted the rising cases of mortality, which he said that 88 percent IDP’s died on daily basis as was witnessed during the survey adding that there was a cholera outbreak in the camps.

He requested for unannounced presidential visit by Muhammadu Buhari to Maiduguri as a way of boosting the morals of security agencies fighting insurgency in the area even as he advocated for increased funding for the IDP’s.

Also speaking, the Chairman of Civil Society Organisation Network, Borno state, Amb Ahmed Shehu expressed worry over the increasing cases of prostitution at the camps which may result to HIV/ AIDS and other infectious diseases.

“In camps and host communities, women need cash-based assistance to establish livelihoods such as tailoring, processing and selling flour or groundnut oil, milk and among others”, he said.

On his part, the Director of Forefront Media, Mr Mohammed Alfa who is a native of Gwoza called on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC) to visit Borno state and access the financial impropriety of Borno government towards the starving IDP’s

$15m Scandal: EFCC Summons Patience Jonathan’s Security Aides

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has summoned some officials of the Department of State Services, who were attached to Dame Patience Jonathan, the wife of former President Goodluck Jonathan, for interrogation.

It was learnt on Friday that the invitation was part of investigations into the $15m frozen in four company accounts, which Patience had laid claim to.

Sources in the EFCC told said that a letter had been written to the DSS, requesting that the officials be allowed to honour the anti-graft agency’s invitation.

A detective told said that the commission had evidence that the DSS officials had, on several occasions, deposited money into some of the accounts in Skye Bank between 2013 and 2015.

The source said, “The $15m, which we have frozen in the four company accounts was not paid into the accounts at once. The money was paid into the accounts over a two-year period.

“However, we have evidence that it was DSS officials attached to Jonathan’s wife that deposited the money. We have gathered bank documents and we have invited them for interrogation.”

When asked why Patience had not been invited by the EFCC, even after she had openly laid claim to the money and dared the anti-graft agency to invite her for questioning, another source told our correspondent that it was because the commission was trying to build a solid case.

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Buhari Not Part Of Budget Padding Scandal- Presidency

The Presidency has distanced itself from the budget padding scandal rocking the National Assembly, saying the Appropriation Act being implemented was the one passed by the lawmakers in March.

The Senior Special Assistant to President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Ita Enang, stated this on Tuesday at the national secretariat of APC after a closed-door meeting with the party leadership.

The former chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Appropriation, Abdulmumini Jibrin, had alleged that the Speaker, Yakubu Dogara, his deputy, Yusuf Lasun, and two other principal officers “padded” the budget with N40 billion.

Mr. Dogara has since denied the allegation. He also refused to resign from office as demanded by some members of the lower legislative chamber.

Mr. Enang said the presidency did not know anything about the scandal.

He said the budget that was signed by President Muhammadu Buhari was the one passed by the National Assembly.

“We are here on the invitation of the party leadership of the APC with my colleague to bring answers to issues raised by the party from the 2016 Appropriation and we have been with the party for a little over three hours and we have given explanation on every issue that there was nothing, to our knowledge, no padding of the budget,” he said.

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Gbajabiamila Breaks Silence Over Budget Padding Scandal

The Leader of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, has broken his silence over the budget padding scandal rocking the lower chamber, following accusations of budget fraud made against Speaker Yakubu Dogara and others by former appropriations committee chairman, Abdulmumin Jibrin.

Mr. Gbajabiamila had remained silent since the House descended into a crisis that has drawn the attention of anti-corruption agencies, and sparked calls for the Speaker to step aside.

Mr. Gbajabiamila gave his position via emails sent to members of the House on Monday. A lawmaker shared the message with a reporter.

The Lagos lawmaker circulated emails to colleagues after some unknown people sent text messages around suggesting he was part of a group working discreetly to force a leadership change in the House.

The anonymous message was sent from phone number 08119106894.

It reads,”Plot to destabilize the leadership of the House of Reps has taken a new dimension as the AGF working with Gbajabiamila, Jibrin & SGF has (sic) drafted charges to arraign and detain principal officers of the House so that the transparency group who recently met with Tinubu’s wife will effect a leadership change with Gbajabiamila as Speaker and Jibrin as Deputy. This is why Jibrin did not mention Femi in his allegations. The 8th House won’t be anybody’s rubber stamp. We will resist them like the senate resisted them.”

But Mr. Gbajabiamila, in his email to lawmakers, denied claims made in the anonymous message.

He said, “Since the budget controversy that engulfed the House about a week ago, I have pointedly maintained a dignified silence. I did this for the sake of the institution I represent and which I have laboured hard to grow and protect, knowing that whatever I say could be impactful both within the House and outside it.

“I was determined to keep in place the glue that holds an otherwise fragmented House, protect its integrity and at same time avoid eroding the little confidence and vestiges of hope Nigerians have in us.

“I am being dragged into an arena I tried very hard to stay out of only for the good of the House. The Speakership election has come and gone. The election was divisive and acrimonious but I have since worked hard to heal the wounds some of which still fester amongst members on both sides.

“It is my responsibility to bring all tendencies in a House I lead together and I have worked well with the Speaker and all other Principal officers in a bipartisan manner and in the interest of the institution and members.

“It is clear that our budget process needs radical reform and very quickly too. Yes, allegations have been made but I strongly believe judgment should not be passed based on allegations. We operate a constitutional democracy and we must at all times submit to its dictates and ethos. All parties are innocent until otherwise proven. This should be our guide. I plead with all members. The mudslinging must stop.

“This text message, which desperately seeks to finger me in some macabre plot to destabilize the House is a throwback and echoes our dark post Speakership election history. The resurfacing or resurgence of the faceless text messengers will not help us as a House and let me quickly add that it will fail.”

“My strongest critics and biggest political adversaries in the House cannot deny the fact that my commitment has always been to strengthen the legislature and its processes and our democracy as a whole. I consider everyone a friend and colleague and urge that as we collectively work towards a stronger legislature and strive to deepen our democracy, we do not pull back the hands of the clock nor lose sight of the enormous responsibility placed upon us by providence as members of a critical arm of government.”

Credit: PremiumTimes

Budget Padding Scandal: Why We Can’t Probe Dogara, Others– House Ethics Committee

The House of Representatives Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions says it is awaiting a petition from a former chairman of House Appropriations Committee chairman, Abdulmumin Jibrin, who has accused the Speaker, Yakubu Dogara, and other members of massive corruption.

The chairman of the ethics committee, Nicholas Ossai (PDP-Delta), sais by phone on Friday that it would need a petition to investigate weighty allegations of budget fraud against Mr. Dogara; deputy, Yusuf Lasun; deputy majority leader, Ahassan Doguwa; and minority leader, Leo Ogor.

He however said it was wrong for Mr. Jibrin to claim that lawmakers “padded” the 2016 budget. He said the budget was merely “amended”.

Mr. Jibrin, who was removed from his position last week, said the speaker, Mr. Dogara, and the other three principal officers, inserted layers of fictitious projects worth N40 billion into the budget for fraudulent reasons.

He has called for their resignation.

“In legislature, you don’t talk about padding,” Mr. Ossai said. “Budget is an appropriation bill and is like other bills that you amend. You know in bills you talk about clauses. Every head in the budget is a clause. So legislators have power to amend it.”

He said lawmakers were allowed to introduce constituency projects as “effective representatives” of the people.

Pressed on Mr. Jibrin’s claim that besides constituency projects, chairmen of 10 committees “padded” over N284 billion through 2000 projects, into the budget, Mr. Ossai said he could not comment because “that is part of investigations”.

“We are waiting for petition and I know pages of newspapers are not petitions,” said Mr. Ossai. ”The ethics committee looks forward to receiving petition. No petition has been brought before the committee; the committee must receive petition before it dabbles into any issue.”

Asked whether his committee could not act proactively given the seriousness of the allegations, Mr. Ossai said a petition would still be better.

“Petition formalises everything. Without recourse to letter that comes from the House (after it received petition), the ethics committee can move into and investigate the matter but it is better empowered if a petition is forwarded to it,” he said.

Credit: PremiumTimes

Why Buratai, Danbazau Were Not Indicted In Arms Scandal Report – FG

The Muhammadu Buhari administration says the report of the Presidential Committee on the Audit of Defence Equipment Procurement in the Armed Forces (2007-2015) was not doctored to remove some names.

A statement issued in Abuja on Friday by the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, dismissed claims that the arms report was doctored as “untrue”.

The statement was signed by the Special Adviser to the Minister, Segun Adeyemi.

The report, released Thursday, indicts former chiefs of army staff, Kenneth Minimah and Azubuike Ihejirika, and other senior past and serving military and civilian officials.

But the findings, approved by President Buhari, have sparked widespread allegations of bias.

Many Nigerians accuse the government of being selective and refusing to indict key members of the current administration, believed to have played questionable roles in military procurement since 2007.

Critics cite the Minister of Interior, Abdurrahman Danbazau, who was the Chief of Army between 2008 and 2010, as an example.

In his statement, however, the Information Minister, Lai Mohammed, said what had been released in the arms report so far was the report of the audit covering the period 2011 to 2015.

He added that the committee would commence the audit of procurement from 2007 to 2010 as soon as the necessary documents were available.

“When the documents regarding procurement from 2007 to 2010 are available and scrutinised, the committee will then issue its report on that.

“The audit is being done on phases, and the report that was released on Thursday is the third of such,’’ he said.

Mr. Mohammed said the federal government’s anti-corruption fight was non-discriminatory and called on Nigerians to keep an open mind as events unfold.

“No one should attempt to distract from the seriousness of the issues involved in this audit of defence equipment procurement,’’ he urged.

The minister said with more than N185.8 billion and 685.3 million dollar spent on procurement and operations within the period, the irregularities in the awards denied the military from getting value for money.

He emphasised that the corruption in the defence sector had very serious consequences for the country.

Credit: PremiumTimes

Blac Chyna Speaks On Tyga/ Molly O’Malia Scandal

Tyga’s former girlfriend Blac Chyna responded to reports that the rapper allegedly sent “uncomfortable” messages through Instagram to 14-year-old model Molly O’Malia, according to Hollywood Life. Chyna was not surprised by Tyga’s action but was shocked that his girlfriend Kylie Jenner was putting up with it.

“Blac’s completely not surprised that Tyga’s on the loose again, direct messaging young girls on social media. That phone of his will be the death of him. He simply can’t give it up and he’s a sucker for younger women,” a source told Hollywood Life. “Kylie’s a better woman than Blac, because there would be no way in hell Blac would let him get away with this much blatant disrespect.”

Chyna also expressed concern about King Cairo saying that Tyga’s actions may affect their 3-year-old son’s future.

“Tyga’s got some serious issues and Blac hopes he figures his s— out before King becomes a teenager. She jokingly told a few of her friends she doesn’t want her son to compete with his father for women,” the source reportedly said. “The last thing she wants is for Tyga to be at King’s high school graduation, trying to hit on all the women in the graduating class.”

Credit: IBT

EFCC Arrests, Quizzes Abba Moro Over NIS Job Scandal

Operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) are reportedly currently interrogating former Minister of Interior, Abba Moro, over the Saturday, March 15, 2014 job test scandal in the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS).

The scandal, which led to the death of about 20 applicants in various recruitment centres across the country, involved over 520,000 Nigerian graduate applicants who paid N1, 000 each to be qualified to take the test.

The NIS under Moro generated a tune of N520 million from the job test.

After the NIS tragedy, several Nigerians demanded the resignation or dismissal of Mr. Moro and the then Comptroller-General of Immigration, David Parradang, as well as their criminal prosecution for involuntary homicide.

Sources said the anti-graft had quizzed the ex-Comptroller-General of the NIS, Parradang on the same matter.

An official of the EFCC who confirmed the arrest of Mr. Moro said a team of investigators have already begun interrogating him.

Another EFCC official said: “It will be a deservice, to sweep under the carpet, the job scandal allegation against the former Minister, which led to the death of innocent job seekers. So, operatives have to invite him for interrogation.”

Credit: Vanguard

Fashola Dragged To EFCC Over N78 Million Website Scandal

The Civil Society Network Against Corruption, a coalition of anti-corruption organisations in Nigeria, has petitioned the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission over the “questionable expenditures” of the administration of Babatunde Fashola, the immediate past governor of Lagos State.

In a petition dated August 10 and addressed to the EFCC Chairman, the group called for the probe of the controversial N78 million spent on the personal website of Mr. Fashola

There was outrage last weekend after analytic firm, BudgIT, revealed that Mr. Fashola approved, before he left office, N78.3 million from the state’s treasury for an upgrade of his personal website.

The contract for the refurbishment of the website was awarded to Info Access Plus Limited by the office of the Chief of Staff to the former governor.

The company, however, denied receiving the amount, insisting that it was paid N10 million.

Read More: premiumtimesng

Woman Who Accused Bill Clinton Of Sexual Harassment Launches Anti-Hillary Website

A woman who has claimed she was sexually assaulted by Bill Clinton during his presidency in 1993 is going after his wife with a website chronicling ‘a scandal a day’ – and she’s looking for more sex-harassment victims.

Kathleen Willey testified in a lawsuit brought by Paula Jones against the former president that he groped her and kissed her in a small room near the Oval Office. The Clintons and their lawyers disputed that claim.

But now Willey says Hillary Clinton is ‘the most corrupt human being, the most corrupt politician
that this nation has ever seen, man or woman.’

She’s working overtime to remind Americans – and to teach young voters who weren’t yet born in 1993 – of her husband’s reputation as a legendary lothario.

Kathleen Willey

Willey told radio host Aaron Klein on Sunday that ‘in light of what’s happened with Bill Cosby,’ she plans to use her website to search for more women who might make sex-harassment claims against the former president.

‘If you or any one you know has been harassed, sexually harassed, assaulted or intimidated by Bill Clinton, please send your name and email address and you can be assured that your anonymity will be ensured … and we will make sure that you are safe,’ she said the language will read.

Willey’s claims about her treatment by Bill Clinton gained credibility in the late 1990s when Linda Tripp, a key figure in the Monica Lewinsky sex scandal that nearly cost him the presidency, said in a televised interview that she had seen Willey leave the Oval Office ‘disheveled. Her face [was] red and her lipstick was off.’

But later, the Clintons and their lawyers released a series of friendly letters from Willey to the then-president, in which she seemed friendly and accommodating.

In 2000 a federal judge ruled that Bill Clinton had ‘committed a criminal violation’ of the federal Privacy Act by releasing those letters.

Willey told her version of the White House encounter on ’60 Minutes’ in 1998, recalling how the then-president had embraced her tightly, kissed her on the mouth, fondled her breast and put her hand on his private parts.

‘I just remember thinking, “What in the world is he doing?”‘ she said during the CBS interview. ‘I was just startled.’

‘I thought, “Well, maybe I ought to give him a good slap across the face.” And then I thought, “I don’t think you can slap the president of the United States like that.”‘

Willey is not the only woman from Bill Clinton’s early years to cast Hillary in the role of sex-abuse enabler.

Paula Jones sued him in 1994 for sexual harassment after an incident in an Arkansas hotel room three years earlier. She told DailyMail.com last month that Bill’s attitude toward women should disqualify him from re-entering the White House and Hillary’s ‘lies’ should rule her out of working in the Oval Office.

‘There is no way that she did not know what was going on, that women were being abused and accosted by her husband,’ Jones said. ‘They have both lied.’

Her lawsuit led to Clinton’s affair with Monica Lewinsky being uncovered, and ultimately started the ball rolling toward his impeachment.

Willey, a onetime White House volunteer who co-founded ‘Virginians for Clinton,’ wrote a book in 2007 titled ‘Target: Caught in the Crosshairs of Bill and Hillary Clinton.’

She said Sunday that while she was working on the book, other women contacted her with horror stories similar to her own.

But they ‘were afraid to talk to me because they were afraid my phone was being tapped,’ she said.

‘They didn’t give me their names. They gave me incidences, time, places, where things happened and what happened. And frankly I was pretty horrified by some of the things they told me. And they were scared to death of Hillary Clinton. And I don’t blame them. She is the one that everybody should be scared of,’ she said. ‘All of these women!’

Speaking of her online ‘a scandal a day’ project, Willey told Klein that:

 ‘the Clintons have made it extremely easy for me. I don’t have to do a lot of research, because it’s not just a scandal a day. It’s about two or three scandals a day.

So what I’m doing is kind of a compilation of these scandals and explaining them in simple terms so most people can understand what’s going on, and what they’re up to and why they are lying every day.’

A Clinton campaign spokesperson did not respond to a phone message seeking comment, DailyMail reports,

Fresh Scandal: Mu’azu Accused of Having Secret Agenda

A group of Concerned Elders and Chieftains of PDP in Bauchi State have accused the National Chairman of the party, Adamu Mu’azu, of not doing enough to ensure that the re-election bid of President Goodluck Jonathan is successful.

The leaders, who were were reacting to the statement by the PDP national publicity secretary, Olisah Metuh, faulting claims that Mu’azu is not committed to the campaign efforts of the president, noted that Mu’azu has his own secret agenda.

Bibi Dogo, who spoke on behalf of the elders on Wednesday ,advised President Jonathan not to rely on Mu’azu to deliver the mandatory 25 percent of votes in the state to him in the forthcoming presidential election.

He stated that there is nothing concrete on ground to show Mu’azu personal commitment to the Jonathan’s re-election efforts.

Read More: Daily Trust

Bill Cosby Breaks Silence with First Video Message to Fans Since Scandal

For the first time since numerous women have come forward alleging they were sexually assaulted by Bill Cosby, the comedian is sending out a video message to his fans.

On Monday, The Cosby Show star released a new video of him talking on the phone, assuring his fans that he’s still performing despite the recent scandal. There is no mention of the more than 20 women who’ve claimed the 77-year-old entertainer sexually assaulted them.

“You know I’ll be hilarious,” Cosby insists about his upcoming comedy shows, this being one of his first efforts to rehabilitate his reputation.

The video also came with a message from Cosby that reads: “Dear fans, I hope you enjoy my wonderful video message that’s filled with laughter… Hey, hey, hey, I’m far from finished.”

The comedian has not been charged with a crime and has yet to publicly address the allegations made by these women.

CreditYahoo