Tainted by allegations of corruption and abuse of office, two nominees for Board membership of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other offences Commission (ICPC) have been dropped by the Presidency.
Less than five days after their names were announced in a statement from the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (OSGF), Acting President Yemi Osinbajo ordered an immediate withdrawal of the two board members, Maimuna Aliyu and Sa’ad Alanamu.
However, presidency sources hinted that a third name likely to suffer the same fate is the former military administrator of Ogun State, Group Captain Sam Ewang (rtd) whose past indictment and links to abuse of public office are now haunting him.
A damning report by International Centre for Investigative Reporting (ICIR) had associated both Maimuna and Alanamu with high profile corruption cases and declared them as not being fit and proper for the job as they were nominated to handle by the federal government.
Obviously too thorough for government to ignore, the ICIR report published last Friday stated that Alanamu is being investigated on corruption charges allegedly committed in Kwara State where he was in charge of several institutions, while Maimuna is stained by a longstanding case of misappropriation, diversion of public funds and abuse of office.
According to the News agency report, “In fact, the ICIR learnt on Friday that charges were already being prepared against her by the ICPC in preparation to taking her to court when her name was announced as a member of the new board of the commission.
Excerpts from the report also stated thus: “Apart from the ICPC investigation, our investigations also show that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Nigerian Police have investigated several corruption cases against Aliyu, a former Executive Director of the Aso Savings and Loans.”
Further addressing issues concerning Maimuna, the report said, “In fact, in May, a police investigative report indicted her and recommended her for prosecution. The investigative report dated May 31, 2017, and signed by Taiwo Oyewale, a Superintendent of Police, for the Deputy Commissioner of Police, IGP Monitoring Unit, said that Aliyu illegally converted to personal use a total of N58 million being proceeds of three plots of land belonging to her employers, Aso Savings and Loans.”
“Police investigations showed that as Executive Director, Marketing, Aliyu got approval to sell three of the bank’s landed properties in Abuja. The plots were offered for N19 million each. Aliyu is said to have sold the lands for N58 million but refused to hand over the money to the bank.
“The police investigations commenced after Aso Savings and Loans wrote a petition in November 2016 alleging that Aliyu, who had by then retired from the bank for three years, had refused to hand over the proceeds of the land sale. The same month, the bank also wrote a petition against her to the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, the EFCC and the ICPC
“In one of the investigations, it was discovered that Aliyu actually sold the three plots of land entrusted to her by the bank at N40 million each (instead of N19 million) totalling N120 million and held on to every penny.
“Apart from the N120 million allegedly misappropriated by her, the bank also lodged several complaints of abuse of office and conversion or diversion of its funds, totalling nearly N1 billion”.
However, spokesperson to the Acting President, Mr Laolu Akande on Sunday dropped the hints on government’s decision to withdraw the controversial nominations.
Akande said government was “stepping down two of the new ICPC board nominees who have ongoing investigation issues with the commission as this presents a conflict. This case presents a peculiarity as we have confirmed that the agency in which they are to serve is indeed investigating the two of them.”