SERAP seeks probe of bribery al­le­ga­tions against Kano gov, Gan­duje

NBA, Labour dif­fer on Assem­bly in­ves­ti­ga­tion

The Guardian (Nigeria) - - NEWS - From­mur­tala Ade­wale (Kano) and Emeka Nwachukwu (La­gos)

PRES­I­DENT Muham­madu Buhari has been urged to use his “good of­fices and lead­er­ship po­si­tion to di­rect the At­tor­ney-gen­eral of the Fed­er­a­tion and Min­is­ter of Jus­tice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), and/or ap­pro­pri­ate anti-cor­rup­tion agen­cies to in­ves­ti­gate al­le­ga­tions of bribery against Gov­er­nor Ab­dul­lahi Gan­duje of Kano State.

The call was con­tained in an open let­ter sent to the Pres­i­dent by the So­cioE­co­nomic Rights and Ac­count­abil­ity Project (SERAP) fol­low­ing the widely cir­cu­lated video clips al­legedly show­ing Gan­duje re­ceiv­ing bribe.”

In the open let­ter signed by SERAP Se­nior Le­gal Ad­viser, Bamisope Adeyanju and made avail­able to The

Guardian yes­ter­day, the or­gan­i­sa­tion said: “If there is rel­e­vant and suf­fi­cient ad­mis­si­ble ev­i­dence, Gan­duje should face prose­cu­tion at the ex­pi­ra­tion of his ten­ure as gov­er­nor.”

It also urged the govern­ment “to in­struct the At­tor­ney-gen­eral and/or ap­pro­pri­ate anti-cor­rup­tion agen­cies to en­sure the pro­tec­tion and guar­an­tee the safety and se­cu­rity of jour­nal­ist, Jaafar, who re­port­edly pub­lished the video clips.”

“Given the his­tory of cor­rup­tion in Nige­ria, es­pe­cially un­re­solved al­le­ga­tions of grand cor­rup­tion against many state gover­nors, your govern­ment can­not and should not look the other way re­gard­ing the al­le­ga­tions against Mr. Gan­duje. Any al­le­ga­tion of bribery and abuse of power in any state of Nige­ria is of con­cern to ev­ery Nige­rian, and should there­fore, be of con­cern to your govern­ment.

“The obli­ga­tions of your govern­ment to com­bat cor­rup­tion in Nige­ria ex­tend to all the three tiers of govern­ment, namely, the Fed­eral Govern­ment, state gov­ern- ment and lo­cal govern­ment. Al­though pri­mar­ily a mat­ter of con­cern for Kano State, the al­le­ga­tions of bribery against Gan­duje have as­sumed such a pro­por­tion as to be­come a mat­ter of con­cern to the fed­er­a­tion as a whole, and there­fore, to your govern­ment,” the group fur­ther stated.

Mean­while, diver­gent views are trail­ing the con­sti­tu­tion of a seven-mem­ber com­mit­tee in­au­gu­rated to in­ves­tiga­tive the al­leged bribery scan­dal lev­elled against Gan­duje.

A for­mer Vice Pres­i­dent of the Nige­ria Labour Congress (NLC), Isa Ti­jani, while ad­dress­ing jour­nal­ists yes­ter­day in Kano, said the Assem­bly was not en­trusted with the con­sti­tu­tional pro­vi­sions to in­ves­ti­gate the al­leged bribery scan­dal. He said the panel mem­bers might be over­lap­ping their re­spon­si­bil­ity for em­bark­ing on cases with crim­i­nal ten­den­cies.

But Chair­man of Nige­rian Bar As­so­ci­a­tion (NBA) in Kano, Lawan Musa, said the Assem­bly re­served the con­sti­tu­tional re­spon­si­bil­ity to set up the panel pri­mar­ily to in­ves­ti­gate the mat­ter.

Musa, in a tele­phone chat with The Guardian, how­ever said that what the panel does not pos­sess was the power to in­vite the gov­er­nor to the pub­lic hear­ing prove his in­no­cence.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Nigeria

© PressReader. All rights reserved.