FG owing Maina N159bn – Lawyer
The latest has not been heard on the controversy surrounding the ongoing ‘war’ between the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and the former Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Pension Returns, Abdurasheed Maina.
Maina in the latest revelation through his lawyer, Barr Sani Katu, claimed that the federal government of Nigeria was owing to him over N159BN, as against the N2.1bn he is being accused of siphoning while in office.
The embattled ex-PRTT boss challenged the anti-graft agency to set up at an open panel of investigation where he would spew out all the unknowns to Nigerians.
In a statement issued on Sunday, Katu recalled that “In 2011, Maina stopped the stealing of N300m daily from police pension. Also, in 2011, he stopped the stealing of N1.04bn monthly from police pension allocations
“Same 2011, he was able to stop the yearly stealing of N52.5bn, which has been an annual ritual at the head of the service pension
“It would interest you to know that between 2011 and 2012 the PRTT under Maina’s leadership recovered cash and asset worth N1.63trn which had been with the EFCC.
“It would be recalled that some pensioners petitioned had the National Assembly to ensure that EFCC produces these recoveries so that Nigerians would know.
“Similarly, between 2016 and June 2017, Maina, released the intelligence and tip-offs that stopped the annual stealing of N1.3trn. (This has been confirmed by the Attorney General and Minister of Justice of the Federation).
“Also, between February 2017 to October 2017, Maina recovered N152bn, N60bn, and other sensitive materials. These achievements go to further to prove the importance of Maina to this country. It means the Government acted in public interest by obeying Court order which brought Maina to an office.
“It could be recalled that Maina was shot at and dismissed by the pension cabal. The 7th Senate asked for his head, he approached the High Court and got a judgement and is now being accused of stealing N2.1bn which is not even a .000001% of what he is supposed to be paid by Government. Are we actually fighting corruption or playing cartel games?” the lawyer queried.
The statement further added, “Now let’s total what Maina recovered, then apply the whistleblower 5%, and get the total to be paid to Maina, then subtract N2.1 bn which even though is a complete fabrication by the EFCC, then pay him the balance of over N159bn.”
Speaking further, the lawyer added, “Nigerians are not stupid and cannot be deceived. They want to take our attention away from all these recoveries because they have repeatedly failed to account for them.
“Our attention cannot be diverted away from about N4tr to a mere N2.1Bn which is an insignificant percentage the N2.1bn, which is less of all the recoveries.
“Let’s meet at an open panel of the investigation if the EFCC is truly straightforward. We urge the Government to appoint an independent panel of investigation and see who will run out of Nigeria.”