BY SEGUN ADEBAYO, ABUJA – The Chief of staff to Governor Nasir el-Rufai, Mr. Mohammed Bashir Saidu is certainly facing a herculean time in his political career following allegation of forgery and falsification of documents that is now threatening his position.
The allegations which began like a rumour soon gained ground as more facts emerged indicating that his career in the civil service was dogged with controversy.
This is in addition to a petition detailing allegations of perjury and falsification of records while he served in the Kaduna State Civil Service and the National Maritime Authority.
Pointedly put, the Chief of Staff may have been dismissed from the Kaduna State civil service based on documents at the Kaduna State Civil Service Commission and a purported forged letter from the commission transferring his service to the Maritime Authority after his dismissal.
Further checks revealed that the embattled Chief of Staff had a tough time trying to clean up his records at the National Maritime Authority until a disciplinary committee in November, 2000 revealed a chain of collaborations with insiders at the Kaduna Civil service Commission.
The disciplinary report of the National Maritime Authority, revealed that Mr. Saidu was employed in 1992 on provisional appointment as principal Internal Auditor on GL.12/1 and was subsequently interviewed on December 28, 1992 after which he was offered appointment as Principal Commercial Officer on GL.12/1 and was confirmed as a permanent and pensionable staff in September, 1994.
Further checks revealed that during the promotion exercise conducted in 1998 by the office of the then minister of Transport, the Chief of Staff to Governor el-Rufai’s case was considered along with other senior and management Staff of the Authority, but after a careful study of his case, the ministerial committee recommended that Saidu can only be promoted only after transferring his service from Kaduna State Government to the Authority.
Curiously, while he was yet to transfer his service, Saidu was double promoted from the position of Principal Commercial officer on GL12 to Chief Commercial on GL14 by the the Director of Administration and Personnel services, Alhaji L. B Rumah.
The development attracted immediate reactions from older and senior staff that felt otherwise and followed up petitions. Accordingly, an earlier petition to the National Maritime Authority (NMA) against Saidu which was initially swept under th carpet suddenly surfaced.
Accordingly, the National Maritime Authority, in a letter NMA/1087/CON.309/85 dated December 8, 1998 and addressed to the Chairman, Kaduna Civil Service Commission seeking details on the real status of Saidu in the Kaduna State Civil Service.
Part of the NMA letter which was signed by D I Atsevah, for the Director General NMA read in parts; “The above named employee of the Authority in December 1992.Records show that before joining the Authority he served with the Ministry of Finance in Kaduna state.
“A letter reference no STAA/403/TD/VOL1/154 dated 26 November 1992 issued by that ministry releasing him to join the Authority (copy attached for ease of reference) indicates that your commission was copied for further necessary action
“I have been directed to request you to brief the Authority on the mode of the officer’s disengagement from the ministry of Finance. Specifically, the Authority wants to know whether he retired or his appointment was terminated or otherwise.
“If retired state whether he collected his gratuity and he is receiving pension. This information is required to enable the management take a decision on the status of his employment in the Authority’’.
However, the letter was alleged to have been intercepted by his aides and collaborators in the Civil Service Commission and in what looked like a deft move, Saidu was believed to have forged another letter that was delivered to the Maritime Authority.
In the allegedly forged letter from the Civil Service Commission, with ref. no CSC/STAFF/N.19827/vol 1/112, with the title RE; Resignation from service; MOH; Bashir Saidu and allegedly signed by one MRs V.Y Bobai, for the Chairman states among other things that; I am directed to refer to your letter No. NMA .1087/CON.309/85, on the above subject matter and to inform you that Mallam Bashir Saidu resigned his appointment with the Kaduna State Civil Service as an accounting officer under the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning in November 1992.”
The allegedly forged letter continued; “The officer therefore neither receive gratuity nor pension as he resigned his appointment and left.”
However, in a surprised move, the Maritime Authority on August 5, 2000 in another letter with reference number NMA.1087/ADM/DAP/111/77 with the title RE: Resignation from service MOH Bashir Saidu, signed by Yusuf A. Sulieman, Director Administration and Personnel, wrote the Chairman, Kaduna State Civil Service Commission to acknowledge the receipt of its letter of enquiry on the status of Bashir.
The second letter stated; “We are by this letter requesting your good office to kindly confirm the receipt of our letter and by way of verification confirm the authenticity of your response as genuinely and officially emanating from your Commission.
The second letter was directly and promptly delivered to the appropriate quarter and the Commission in response on September 15, 2000 with ref. No. 19827/Vol 1/116 exposed the scam perpetuate by Saidu.
The letter signed by Danladi D. Sanda, a permanent Secretary in the Commission painstakingly wrote, “I am directed to refer to your letter No. 1087/ADM/DAP/111/77 dated August 5th, 2000 on the above subject matter and to inform you that your letter No. 1087/con.309/88 dated December 8th, 1998 attached to your letter under reference above was NEVER received at the Commission.
The Commission is also not aware that Saidu, ‘’transferred‘’ his service to your authority as the ministry of Agriculture’s letter quoted in your letter is not available in the Commission.
“Furthermore, the letter No. CSC/STAFF/N.19827/Vol 1/112 of 16th December, 1998 was never issued by the Commission.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the Commission is aware that Mallam Saidu was interdicted by the Kaduna Agricultural Development Agency (KADP) with effect from 10th June, 1991 and his appointment was terminated on the strength of the letter from the Secretary to the State Government with effect from 13th June 1992.
“The Commission is therefore not aware of the offense leading to termination and effort to confirm this had not been successful,” the Commission confirmed.
It was gathered that the letter of termination of Saidu was signed by Dr. SA’ AD Usman, who was Secretary to the Kaduna State Government and was dated 7th August, 1992 which stated; “After a careful study of the circumstances leading to your interdiction on 10th June 1991 and your alleged recall on the 13th, June 1992, I am to inform you that your services with the Kaduna State Agricultural Development Project are no longer required, with immediate effect.”
Attempts by Forefront online news to get reaction from Saidu proved abortive as calls placed to his telephone line did yield positive results.