Advocacy Group Warns President Tinubu against Appointing Politicians with Fraud Allegations

Advocacy Group Warns President Tinubu against Appointing Politicians with Fraud Allegations

…By Lola Smith for TDPel Media.

The Forum for Transparency and Accountability in Governance, an advocacy group, issued a cautionary message to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu on Friday.

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They advised him against appointing any politicians with pending fraud allegations to his administration, even if they claim party loyalty.

President Tinubu is expected to present his list of ministerial nominees to the Senate within a statutory period of 60 days.

Advice from the Advocacy Group

The statement, jointly issued by the group’s Convener, Dr Bala Musa Mustapha, Secretary General, Mr Nouel Malama, and Director of Publicity, Nafisa Hamid Jika, urged President Tinubu to exercise prudence and refrain from appointing politicians with questionable reputations.

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They particularly singled out Malam Nasir El-Rufai, the former governor of Kaduna State, advising that he should be kept away from positions of power.

El-Rufai’s Ongoing Trial and Allegations

The group highlighted that Malam Nasir El-Rufai is currently facing trial for alleged embezzlement of N32 billion from the sales of Federal Government Houses during his tenure as the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory between 2005 and 2007.

They referenced a 2019 ruling by Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court, in which she asserted that El-Rufai could not prevent the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) from investigating and prosecuting him over the fraud allegations.

Encouragement for Prosecution

The advocacy group encouraged the EFCC to resume El-Rufai’s prosecution, which was put on hold when he assumed office as governor in May 2015, due to the immunity of the office.

They referred to a damning audit report by Akintola Williams Deloitte and Aminu Ibrahim & Co, which indicated that the N32 billion proceeds from the sale of Federal Government Houses were missing.

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Expectations from President Tinubu

The group emphasized that any government committed to probity and accountability should avoid patronizing individuals like the former governor of Kaduna State.

They expressed hope that President Tinubu will respond appropriately to the El-Rufai issue and urged him not to wait for public protests before taking necessary action.

Call for Diligent Prosecution

In conclusion, the advocacy group urged the EFCC and other anti-corruption agencies to diligently prosecute both former and current public officers with pending cases.

They expressed concern that failure to do so could be perceived as selective prosecution of corrupt government officials.

The group’s statement underscores their commitment to ensuring transparency and accountability in governance.

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