GOVERANCE

Kano Anti-Corruption Commission Files Fresh Charges Against Ganduje

 

The Kano State Anti-Corruption and Public Complaints Commission says it has filed fresh charges of corruption and maladministration against an ex-governor of the state, Abdullahi Ganduje.

“What is happening now is a tip of the iceberg,” the Chairman of the anti-graft commission, Muhuyi Magaji, said on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily programme on Tuesday.

“As I am talking to you, we are investigating a case whereby N51.3bn local government funds were directly taking from the government coffers (and) sent to other individuals, and we traced it to people.”

Magaji alleged that the Ganduje government took N1bn from the state coffers a month to the expiration of the administration’s tenure in May 2023 but the money was sent to Bureau de Change operators and not used for road renovation as earmarked.

“We have piled series of cases. We have a case whereby N1bn in April last year (2023) was removed from government coffers under the allocation of renovating 30 roads in the metropolis and it was taken away, sent to Bureau de Change.

“We have a case of N4bn whereby it was sent from the consolidated revenue account of Kano State to an agricultural company. All these cases are before the court,” he said.

The Kano anti-graft chairman, who said he was being viewed as a “stubborn person” in some quarters, insisted that the court ruled that money laundering was a federal offence but the commission has the right to probe alleged corruption and maladministration by the Ganduje administration.

Magaji said though he was appointed by Ganduje to head the agency, he won’t hesitate to prosecute alleged corruption by the immediate-past administration in the state.

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He said, “Incidentally, His Excellency, the former governor was the one that appointed me in 2015 to to head the agency and I was re-appointed in 2020 for another five-year term. Basically, we have an institution in the Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Commission that is devoid political activities and dedicated to fight corruption, check maladministration and fight injustice.”

Magaji said he started investigating the administration of Ganduje when he was Kano governor. He said there should be no sacred cows in the anti-corruption fight in the state.

“That is the beauty of what we are doing. In Nigeria, we are not supposed to have those that will be shielded. Even, we that are in the anti-corruption agency, our integrity has been tested. And that is how it is supposed to be. Anybody that is charged before the court of law, let him go and answer.”

Meanwhile, the Kano High Court would arraign Ganduje on Wednesday, April 17, 2024, on charges bordering on allegations of bribery, diversion, and misappropriation of funds, including the purported acceptance of $413,000 and N1.38bn in bribes.

Ganduje, who was Kano governor between May 2015 and May 2023, has been under pressure to resign his position as the national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The situation took a new twist on Monday with some APC executives in Ganduje’s ward in Kano suspending him and insisting that he exonerates himself of corruption charges levelled against him by the state government.

However, the state executives of the party dismissed the suspension and sanctioned the ward officials involved.

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