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Emir Sanusi’s claim on alleged N3.4bn fraud, misrepresentation of facts – Anti-graft agency

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, was addressed to the Secretary to the State Government.

“It is imperative to state categorically that, the Commission’s investigation is on alleged misappropriation and questionable expenditures but not on the funds left behind by the Late Emir of Kano, Alhaji Ado Bayero, and we still maintain our stance.

“In the cause of investigation we undertook an analysis of the main Account belonging to Kano Emirate Council and domicile at First Bank with Account No. 2005888452 starting from the era of the Late Emir to enable the Commission have an idea of how the money is being managed.”

According to the report, there were 783 activities bordering on withdrawals, transfers and placements from Jan. 2, 2013, to June 6, 2014, during the time of the late Emir.

“As from 2nd January 2013 to 13th April, 2017, the opening balance is N432,338,412.98. Total credit made in the account during this period was N6,784,146,335.73 while the total debit during the period under review is N7,209,035,163.09.”

However, it added that, “the closing balance as at April, 2017, is N7,449,585.62″.

It further revealed that on Feb. 13, 2014, and Feb. 26, 2014, payments were made to Philko Ltd, the company said to have undertook the construction of Ado Bayero Royal City via Inter Bank transfers of the sum of N776,159,519.50.

“There were transfers of N388,079,759.75, N338,079,759.75 and N50,000,000.00 made on Feb. 13, 2014, and Feb. 26, 2014, respectively; making the total quoted figures for Philko Ltd.”

The report also alleged that during the period, fixed deposit placements were made to the tune of N581,884,729.54 (placement and rollovers) while net withdrawals on some engagements both cash and withdrawal stood at N1,056,533,728.31.

“In summary, the total withdrawal made from the Account under the Late Emir was N2,414,577,977.35, subtracting this amount from total debit on the account which is N7,209,035,163.09.

“It is evidently clear that the current Emir is responsible for the expenditures to the total sum of N4,794,457,185.74 from the Emirate Council Account domicile in First Bank Plc,” it said.

Similarly, it alleged that all the expenditures made by the Emirate Council were either based on the approval or instructions of Emir Sanusi.

The commission attached copy of a payment voucher in respect of one of the withdrawals to buttress its claim, which read “Being payment to the above named in respect of making special prayers for peace as directed by H.H. Emir of Kano respectively“.

“Therefore, any claim that the Emir is not the accounting officer of the Kano Emirate Council is a deception and a misrepresentation of facts.

“Specifically, the reason of our recommendation for the suspension apart from obstruction of investigation which formed the basis, investigation further reveals that Rufa’i Buhari (Senior Accountant) usually made cash withdrawals directly from the account and change it to Dollars on behalf of the Emir.

“Sometimes direct transfers from the account are made to a Bureau De Change belonging to one Jazuli Sani who was said to have died.

“The Commission still maintain the allegation on unappropriated, seemingly personal expenditures, making the total sum of questionable expenditures uncovered by this investigation to the tune of N3,432,090,797.94 only,” the report emphasised. .

Edited by Maharazu Ahmed

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Kwara Government reiterates commitment to road rehabilitation

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The Kwara Government has restated its commitment to give priority to construction and rehabilitation of roads in the state.

Deputy Governor Kayode Alabi, gave the assurance when he received the Executives of Idofin Odo Ashe Development Association, led by its President, Mr Stephen Kasum in his office in Ilorin on Saturday.

Alabi described the deplorable state of roads as a serious problem in the state, especially in Kwara South, adding that Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq-led government would give necessary attention to road rehabilitation across the state.

The President of the Association, Stephen Kasum, commended the   government for the achievement recorded so far in the development of the state.

Kasum called for the upgrading of traditional rulers in Idofin district from third class to second class status.

He also called for the rehabilitation of the dilapidated Idofin-Olla road in order to reduce the suffering of road users.

 

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President Buhari salutes Sultan of Sokoto at 63

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President Muhammadu Buhari has congratulated the Sultan of Sokoto, His Eminence, Sa’ad Abubakar III, on the occasion of his 63rd birthday.

The president’s congratulatory message is communicated in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, in Abuja on Saturday.

President Buhari applauded the Sultan’s exemplary roles and contributions toward building a peaceful, secure and prosperous country.

The President lauded the timely counsel and support of the royal father to his administration’s policies and programmes.

He also commended the Sultan for championing poverty reduction, healthcare and education for the most vulnerable, during his reign as a spiritual and traditional leader of the people.

President Buhari also acknowledged the laudable contributions of the Sultan as head of Jama’atu Nasirl Islam (JNI), President-General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) and co-Chairman of Nigeria Inter-Religious Council (NIREC).

He urged him to keep doing the things he loves most: building bridges of peace, tolerance and development across Nigeria.

President Buhari joined family members, the Sokoto Emirate, the government and people of Sokoto State, friends and well-wishers in praying that Almighty Allah grants the Sultan more years of health and happiness.

Edited by Donald Ugwu

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No change in traditional roles of Chief of Staff, SGF – Presidency

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The Presidency on Saturday explained that the responsibilities of the Chief of Staff (CoS) to the President had not changed.

The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, in a statement in Abuja, frowned at recent negative speculations, saying the role of the CofS remains as it was during the first tenure of President Muhammadu Buhari.

He said: “Recent media and social media reports on the responsibilities of the Chief of Staff to the President have suggested that the role has changed. This is not the case.

“Today, under the Buhari II administration the role of Chief of Staff remains the same as it was under Buhari I.

“It is worth stressing that the role and responsibilities of the Chief of Staff and the method of communication and arranging scheduling between Cabinet members and the President are, in Nigeria, based on the US model, where the same system operates – and has done for decades – in precisely the same way.’’

According to Shehu, the CoS is to act as the head of the presidential administration at Aso Rock and to be an adviser to the President on any and all matters.

He said the CoS would serve as the line manager for all staff at Aso Rock, and to manage appointments and scheduling for the President.

“In the traditional presidential system, it is a primary function of a Chief of Staff, which may vary according to the needs and desires of each President.

“He is to supervise key State House Staff, control access to the office and the person of the President, manage communications and information flow and this includes that which binds the relationship with the two other arms of government,’’ he added.

The presidential aide, noted that during the President’s first term those were the responsibilities of the CoS, and “they remain the same responsibilities today. There is no change.

“When President Buhari explained to ministers that they would be expected to communicate with him and arrange scheduling to meet with him primarily via the Chief of Staff, he did so as many of the Buhari II Cabinet ministerial appointments are new appointments and cannot therefore be expected to know how matters of liaising with the President operate.

“This is to stress that access to the President is open to ministers. It is not true that this is denied them in the Second Term.’’

The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) on the other hand, according to him, is responsible for ensuring the effective coordination and monitoring of the implementation of government policies and programmes.

He added that all cabinet matters must go through him.

He explained that under this dispensation, a performance evaluation of ministers and Permanent Secretaries would be maintained by the SGF.

“Two weeks after assuming office, they are expected to sign mandate acceptance documents.

“It is time to end the unnecessary controversy, for the key appointees of the President to carry out their jobs,’’ he said.

SYC/MST

Edited by Muhammad Suleiman Tola

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NGO produces 45 PhD holders in 25 years – Coordinator

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The Muslim Refresher Course Programme (MRCP), an Islamic Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), says it has trained and produced 45 Ph.D holders, with several Masters and First Degree graduates in its 25 years of existence.

Malam Aliyu Sabo, the State Coordinator of the organisation, disclosed this at the Silver Jubilee celebration of the NGO, held at the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Conference Hotel, Kongo, Zaria, Kaduna state, on Saturday.

Sabo said: “At 25, MRCP has achieved most of its objectives which include; producing more than 45 Ph.D. holders, apart from those with Masters and First Degrees, HND, NCE and Diploma, among others.

“It has significant number of academic staff in ABU, Zaria, alone, talk less of other institutions.

“There are many among its beneficiaries in the Armed Forces with the ranks of Major, Captain and its equivalent, as well as in the Nigeria Police.

“It produced Medical Doctors, Administrators, Mathematicians, Engineers, Accountants, Teachers and Pharmacists, among others, who are contributing greatly to nation building.”

He said that MRCP had become worthy of emulation as similar programmes were established by its ex-students and people with same motive all over the town.

Sabo said the existence of the NGO had not only united the youths in Zaria, but it also helped them eliminate differences and hatred that existed amongst them for decades.

The coordinator howecer listed some challenges facing the organisation to include; lack of funds to establish Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and skills acquisition centre.

Others, he said, were lack of mobility for educational trips and other purposes, lack of laboratory and science practical apparatus and lack of standard computer laboratory.

Gov. Nasiru el-Rufa’i appreciated the gigantic efforts of the NGO and encouraged the leaders of the NGO to sustain the tempo.

The governor, who was represented by Alhaji Sa’idu Suleiman, Assistant Director, state Ministry of Education, assured the commitment of government towards educational development in the state.

The Emir of Zazzau, Dr Shehu Idris, described the efforts of the NGO as gigantic, encouraging and undying, adding that the benefits will never be forgotten.

The Emir, who was represented by Bijimin Arewan Zazzau, Alhaji Aliyu Sa’idu, appealed to other NGOs in the area to emulate the gesture to take Zaria and Zazzau emirate to greater heights.

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Price of garri remains stable in Enugu major markets

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The price of cassava flakes, popularly called ‘garri’, has remained stable in major markets in Enugu, the Nigeria News Agency reports.

A market survey conducted by in Enugu metropolis on Saturday revealed this price stability.

The report said the price of garri, one of the staple foods regularly consumed by Nigerians, had remained stable since April.

Some garri sellers, who spoke to attributed the price stability to many Nigerians going into cassava farming.

Mrs Patricia Nwozor, a garri seller at New market, said that the price has remained the same for the past five months.

Nwozor added that she planted, harvested, processed and sold the product by herself.

“Many people are into cassava farming this days, ever since garri was sold for N1000 per 4.5 litres in 2017, many families decided to go into cassava farming.

“Since 2018 till this time, the price of garri has been relatively stable in Enugu,” she said.

Mrs Uchechi Ikechi, another garri seller at Garki market, said that the price of a bag of white garri is stiil sold for N8,500, while that of yellow garri remained N9,500

Ikechi explained that a 4.5 litres bucket of the white garri goes for N300 and the white garri goes for between N350 and N400.

“The price of garri was lesser between December 2018 and March 2019, though stable from April till now.

“Between December 2018 and March 2019 the white bag of garri was sold for between N6000 and N7000.

“The yellow type went for N8000 and the 4.5 ltres of the white and yellow types were sold for N280 and N300, respectively,” she said.

Mrs Joy Igwe, a garri seller at Mayor market, said that price remain stable in the metropolis except in the rural markets where one could negotiate with the sellers to get it at lesser price.

According to Igwe, four cups of both the white and red garri still go N100 as one cup could be bought for N30.

A buyer at Ogbete Main Market, Mr Ukamaka Okezie, expressed happiness that price of garri has continued to be stable in the past five months.

Okezie commended the Federal Government for encouraging Nigerians to embrace farming as this has made staple food available and affordable in the country.

OJI/MST

Edited by Muhammad Suleiman Tola

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