Search Site: OnlineNigeria

Close






Obasanjo, Atiku abused office – Senate committee

Posted by By MODESTUS CHUKWULAKA, Abuja on 2007/03/22 | Views: 1451 |

Obasanjo, Atiku abused office – Senate committee


The Senate review committee on the Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF), whose members resigned en masse on Tuesday evening, has recommended that both President Olusegun Obasanjo and Vice-President Atiku Abubakar be charged to the Code of Conduct Bureau for engaging in illegal activities at the PTDF. The committee said that both the president and the vice president abused their offices in handling the affairs of the Fund.

The Senate review committee on the Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF), whose members resigned en masse on Tuesday evening, has recommended that both President Olusegun Obasanjo and Vice-President Atiku Abubakar be charged to the Code of Conduct Bureau for engaging in illegal activities at the PTDF. The committee said that both the president and the vice president abused their offices in handling the affairs of the Fund.

The 63-page report obtained by Daily Sun in Abuja, indicted the president for using the PTDF money for projects outside the mandate of the agency, including the incorporation of Galaxy Backbone, purchase of computers for civil servants, under the Computer for all Nigerians Initiative and the rehabilitation of the Defence Industry Corporation of Nigeria.

Although the review committee had noted, as did the Senator Ndoma-Egba led ad hoc committee, that Obasanjo got retrospective approval from the Federal Executive Council after giving the approvals, it described the president’s action as illegal and said: "The committee views the action of the president, C-in-C, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, as illegal, and therefore refers Mr. President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, to the Code of Conduct Bureau for further action."

The ad hoc committee, set up earlier by the Senate to look into the matter, had merely recommended that the president be reprimanded.
On Atiku, the review panel said the approval he gave without the authority of the president in respect of $20 million was illegal. It also recommended that Atiku the vice president face the Code of Conduct Bureau.

However, the committee said the vice-president was not to blame for approving an additional $20 million as was requested by then Executive Secretary of the PTDF, Hamisu Abubakar, on October 14, 2003, even though the money was not utilized for the purpose for which it was sought as it was instead placed at the defunct Trans International Bank.

It noted that Hamisu misrepresented the facts and wrongfully obtained the approval of the vice president for the money and recommended that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), which is currently investigating the matter, should continue and prosecute the erstwhile executive secretary for any offence discovered.

Also noting that another former executive secretary of the PTDF, Hussaini Jalo, who held sway from July to November 2005, was under investigation by the EFCC, the review committee recommended that the commission should also prosecute him for any offence that may be uncovered in the course of its investigation.

It further noted that the immediate past executive secretary of the PTDF, Alhaji Adamu Maina Waziri, spent N4.5 million on progress report on the Obasanjo administration and photographs for the State House Library, saying that it viewed the project as outside the mandate of the PTDF Act.

"The committee recommends that the Executive Secretary, Alhaji Adamu Maina Waziri, should be referred to the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) for further action," it said.
However, in respect of the approvals of April 25, 2003 and the subsequent placements of $115 million in Equatorial Trust Bank (ETB) and $10 million in TIB, the committee said it was satisfied that due process was followed, saying that the investment was within the provision of the PTDF Act.

Although the Ndoma-Egba committee had described as curious the coincidence in the approval of $125 million and another $20 million, their placement in the TIB and the loans granted by the bank to companies promoted by Otunba Oyewole Fasawe, the review committee said it could not establish that the coincidence was enough to link the deposits with the loans.

PTDF opened an account with TIB on July 16, 2003 and lodged $10 million with the bank on the same date and another $20 million on December 24, 2003. On October 20, 2003, the bank advanced a loan of N400 million to NDTV, a business concern promoted by Fasawe. Two days later, the same bank advanced another N420 million to Mofas Shipping Company, another company promoted by Fasawe. On the third day, (October 23), it gave another N300 million loan to Transvari Services, yet another company in which Fasawe has interest. In January 2004, TIB also advanced another loan of N730 million to NDTV.

According to the report, there was no evidence to suggest that the placement of the funds in TIB was for the purpose of financing NDTV/iGate deal as was held by the Ndoma-Egba committee. It further said it had no evidence of any PTDF funds in the transaction other than the TIB loan.

On the loans given to NDTV, Mofas and Transvari by TIB amounting to N1.85 billion, the review committee disagreed with the ad hoc committee, which had earlier described the loans as irregular, poorly documented and without collateral, saying the loans were based on banker/customer relationship, noting that if there was any irregularity, it was left for the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to determine.

While the ad hoc committee had noted what it called a preponderance of evidence to suggest there was a business relationship between Atiku and Fasawe, despite the former’s denial, the review committee said it had no reason to doubt the submission of both men that there exists no business relationship between them.

The Senator Umaru Tsauri review committee also held that Adamu Abubakar, who owns 10 per cent shares in NDTV, was not the vice president’s son, since submissions by the vice president and the Corporate Affairs Commission as well as Fasawe did not indicate that the company is, in any way, connected to the vice president.

Read Full Story Here.... :
Leave Comment Here :



Add Comment

* Required information
1000
Captcha Image

Comments (3)

Gravatar
New
Okfold(Sobe, Edo, Nigeria)says...

I want the meaning of female owan name Ekeke (Edo state)

Gravatar
New
Toluwalase Samuel Olufemi(Ijebu, Ogun, Nigeria)says...

Authority belongs to God, once He decrees it is final and binding

Gravatar
New
Ikponmwosa Osamede(Edo, Nigeria)says...

Your meaning of Osamede is wrong. Osamede means God has given me a crown