Dollar Scandal: Anti-graft agency didn’t probe Ganduje because ‘wasn’t involved in sting’

Kano Governor Ganduje caught on video receiving dollars from suspected contractors
Kano Governor Ganduje caught on video receiving dollars from suspected contractors. [PHOTO CREDIT: Screen shot of the video obtained from Daily Nigerian]

The head of the Kano State Public Complaint and Anti-Corruption Commission, Magaji Ramindado, has said the commission could not probe Governor Abdullahi Ganduje’s alleged bribery scandal because the agency was “not carried along” in the investigation by the newspaper that reported the case.

Mr Ramindado said the governor’s immunity had also barred the commission from taking action.

A video published by the newspaper Daily Nigerian in October 2018 showed Mr Ganduje receiving wads of dollars. The newspaper said the governor collected $5,000 as kickback from a government contractor.

Mr Ganduje said the clip was doctored, but video specialists at PREMIUM TIMES confirmed the material was not fake.

Nigerians have since called for the governor to be investigated. He won a second term despite the scandal.

As governor, Mr Ganduje has constitutionally-provided immunity against prosecution. But he can be investigated pending when he leaves office.

No federal anti-corruption agency, including the EFCC, has said it has investigated the matter.

The Kano anti-corruption agency, the state’s equivalent of the EFCC, has also not probed the case.

Speaking on Tuesday at the opening of a two-day meeting on anti-corruption fight in Kano, the chairman of the body, Mr Ramindado, said the commission also failed to act because it did not know the motive of the journalist who released the video.

The meeting, with the theme: ”Enhancing Citizens’ Effective Participation in the Fight Against Corruption,” was organised by Actionaid Nigeria, a non-governmental organisation and member of ActionAid global federation.

Advertisement

RIPAN Campaign AD

The anti-graft agency boss was reacting to allegation that its probe of the Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, was politically motivated.

He said although the agency was established by the state government, it was not independent.

“On the issue of dollar bribery scandal and the accusation that we have not probed the governor, people have forgotten that governors enjoy immunity,” he said.

“And apart from this, how could you undertake sting operation without involving us, yet you want us to be part of the probe? We can’t, because we don’t know your motive, we don’t know whether it is true or not. For you to have gone to the extent of releasing the video, you could have got anti-graft agencies involved. It doesn’t mean it should necessarily be our own agency. But EFCC and ICPC are there and they could back the claim,” he said.

The chairman said his agency has investigated a serving commissioner and another permanent secretary, adding that one of the cases is currently pending at the court of appeal.

“We have investigated judiciary institutions, we have investigated the traditional institutions. I enter government house and I make arrest. We don’t care whether people will say we are part of the government or not. I have investigated a serving commissioner and even a serving permanent secretary. Google the case of the Commissioner for Lands, Kano State, we are currently in the Appeal Court over the matter,” he added.

Mr Ramindado also said the allegation of a gorilla swallowing money at a zoo in Kano was not true. He said preliminary investigations showed that there was a robbery incident at the zoo on June 8.

He, however, alleged that the management of the zoo could be found wanting for keeping such huge resources at the zoo in spite of the treasury single account system being operated by the state.

Welcoming guests to the programme, the Country Director of the organisation, Ene Obi, urged participants including grassroots women to be involved in the fight against corruption.

She advised parents to always query sources of wealth of their children and raise relevant questions when necessary about suspicious issues.

The keynote speaker at the programme was the lawyer, Femi Falana.

Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility

Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.

For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.

By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.

Donate


NEVER MISS A THING AGAIN! Subscribe to our newsletter

* indicates required

DOWNLOAD THE PREMIUM TIMES MOBILE APP

Now available on

  Premium Times Android mobile applicationPremium Times iOS mobile applicationPremium Times blackberry mobile applicationPremium Times windows mobile application

TEXT AD: This space is available for a Text_Ad.. Call Willie on +2347088095401 for more information


All rights reserved. This material and any other material on this platform may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, written or distributed in full or in part, without written permission from PREMIUM TIMES.