Group Frowns At Media Trial Of Former Minister, Sadiya Umar-Farouq


A Civil Society Organisation (CSO), on the aegis of “The Legends Mandate (TLM)” has called on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to be fair and dispassionate in its investigation of the activities of the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.

This was as the group urged Nigerians to be wary of misinformation by a section of the media when unconfirmed materials have easy passages, adding that the audience needs to be wary of what they believe, given the tendency of merchants of falsehood to feed them with not just untruth but sensational reports.

It specifically advised against media trial which aims to swing public opinion against the former Minister, adding that it strongly believe that truth will prevail anyhow at the end of investigations.

The group particularly tasked the anti-graft agency not to be carried away by the salacious and sensational reports around the alleged diversion of funds, but to sift through the clarifications the former minister had been invited to offer, stressing that the EFCC should be rest assured of Sadiya Umar-Farouk’s cooperation with the operatives of the Commission.

President of the TLM, Dr.Isaiah Adamu, who stated these in a statement made available to Forefront News, said the sound of billions of Naira was not enough to assume that funds had been misappropriated especially when considered against the predominance of poverty in the land, which the ministry was set up to resolve.

Adamu said; “We are easily overwhelmed by big budget ministries, but if we look closely, we will discover that the monies were not even enough in the first instance. Just imagine you give five thousand naira to ten million people, or ten thousand naira to twenty million people. Calculate it and see what you will get.

“The people have low trust in their leaders, and the media is taking advantage of this, instead of correcting wrong impressions.

“I am assured that Hajiya Sadiya Umar-Farouq did her best despite all the abuses, the name-calling, and the antics of naysayers. We should stop tarring leaders with the same brush, especially when the records are there for all to see. “Hajiya Umar-Farouq did her best and should not be unnecessarily vilified for projects that were executed with a chain of people and officers being responsible.

“I agree with earlier comments that we should avoid mischief-makers who take delight in defamation. She is proud to have served her country as Minister with every sense of responsibility and would defend her actions anytime,” he said.

Adamu further said; “Suffice it to say that the agencies, whose financial activities attracted the attention of the anti-graft agency had their budgets independently and exclusively administered by them as long as expenditures did not exceed the threshold envisioned in the Public Procurement Act, of 2007, as amended.

“If proposed expenditures go above the threshold, the agencies would revert to the higher authorities for ministerial, or other approvals. However, the agencies, in their judgment, ensured that expenditures for contracts were below ministerial or other approvals.

“The minister would simply have to explain this if she has to visit the EFCC to enable the agency to proceed with its investigations. We believe that offering clarifications should be the simplest of all tasks for Hajiya Sadiya to do,” TLM said.

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