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Fresh facts have emerged on how seven government officials looted public funds from the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) running into billions of naira. The officials have already been suspended by the governing board of the agency and are being investigated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Com-mission (EFCC).

A top Presidency source yesterday confirmed to New Telegraph that a detailed report on how the officials misappropriated the funds has been submitted to President Muhammadu Buhari for consideration.

“The report submitted to the President shows the enormity of the crimes committed by the officials which comprised misappropriation of public funds, frivolous claims of personal emoluments and conspiracy with the other officials to short-change the Federal Government of due revenues, among others,” the Presidency stated

On the former NEMA Director General, Mr. Sani Sidi, the report indicated that he maintained 20 different accounts in various banks. “EFCC found suspicious deposits amounting to $164,000 in his domiciliary account at Standard Chartered Bank alone, all within 18 months, i.e., between January 2014 and June 2015. “This almost averages out at $10,000 per month.

At the same time, he had up to £58,000 in his pound sterling account. He faces allegations of misappropriation of public funds, frivolous claims of personal emoluments and conspiracy with the other officials to shortchange the Federal Government of due revenues.”

On the suspended Director of Finance and Accounts, Akinbola Hakeem Gbolahan, the Presidency stated that he maintains many bank accounts with questionable transactions.

“EFCC, the report indicated, has noted in particular his account in GTBank where suspicious deposits were found, totalling N27,650,000 which is, in addition, the over £37,000 and $120,000 found in his domiciliary accounts, and his naira account which has several suspicious deposits in excess of N50 million, much of which flowed directly from NEMA,” the source stated.

For the Acting Director of Special Duties, Mr. Umesi Emenike, findings from the report revealed that funds meant for programmes and maintenance of the South- South zonal operations of NEMA under his supervision were paid directly into his personal accounts.

The government stated that 14 of the accounts have been discovered by EFCC in various banks, instead of the Zonal Office Account. “And he was found to have withdrawn freely in cash, by electronic transfers or through ATM machines, without any evidence of the money being used for NEMA activities,” the report said.

The report also shows that his subordinate, the Zonal Accountant, also made several cash lodgements into the personal account of Mr. Emenike. “About N238 million has so far been traced from NEMA directly to Mr. Emenike’s personal accounts which were placed in fixed deposits and used freely by the Ag. Director,” it said.

The report also revealed that the Director of Risk Reduction, Mr. Alhassan Nuhu, also maintained five bank accounts which were apparently used as conduits to receive and distribute money from NEMA’s coffers. According to the report, so far, Mr. Nuhu has not been able to give satisfactory account of the transactions, including NEMA’s funds moving through him to a company called Dambo Farms Limited.

“The case of the Pilot in charge of NEMA’s Air Ambulance is especially interesting. His name is Mamman Ali Ibrahim. On his own, he commercialized both the NEMA Air Ambulance and Helicopter.

“The report further indicates that EFCC traced at least N285 million to him, of which only N63 million was paid to the Accountant General’s Office and another N11 million was paid to NEMA, but the rest cannot be accounted for,” the Presidency said. According to the report, some of the money was, however, channelled to his family members through his company, Aerocare West Africa Limited, while others in foreign exchange were directly traced to the former’s accounts.

The report also indicted the Chief Maintenance Officer, Mr. Ganiyu Yunusa Deji, who was in charge of fuel supplies to NEMA Generators and was found to have been receiving regular returns into his personal account from the supplier, Rekimat Global Resource Limited. It was also noted in the report that since Mr. Ganiyu Yunusa was suspended, the fuel that used to last for one week now lasts for more than a month.

There is also the case of M. Kanar Mohammed, the Director of Welfare. His six bank accounts, according to the Presidency, were found to be replete with NEMA funds, including a N214 million meant for displaced traditional rulers in the North- East, N184 million paid by him to one Crystal Chambers and N29.5 million paid by him to a former minister, Abdul Bulama.

The report, however, indicated that all the indicted officers are still under investigation mainly by EFCC and their suspension was obviously to ensure they don’t remain in office to tamper with evidence in the process of due investigation.

“It is, therefore, expected that the final report of investigation will soon be ready, following which the seven NEMA suspended directors will face criminal prosecution,” the source said.

The source, who pleaded anonymity, said the seven officials that are aware of the report have been lobbying members of the House of Representatives to ensure that they are not found wanting by the EFCC which is investigating the matter. He stressed that all the seven officials are bent on covering up the matter.

Explaining further, the source said that details of the report revealed that the affected persons, in league with the former Director General of NEMA, illegally procured various papers from NEMA files in their bid to exonerate themselves. The source also noted that the officials, in doing so, intend to be in a better position to challenge their suspension, claiming they were innocent whistleblowers being victimized by the board.

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Men Are Scum ! Nigerian Gay Threatens To Expose Married Man Who Used, Dumped Him

Gbemileke Ajayi

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A Nigerian gay who was used and dumped by his married partner who also is gay has threatened to expose him to his wife for dumping him.

Relationship adviser and blogger, Joro Olumofin shared the story of this young man on his Instagram page on Thursday.

Read his narration below:

You would recall that Nigeria’s former President, Goodluck Jonathan signed a bill that criminalizes same-sex relationships, defying western pressure over gay rights and provoking US criticism.

The bill, which contains penalties of up to 14 years in prison and bans gay marriage, same-sex “amorous relationships” and membership of gay rights groups, was passed by the national assembly.

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BIG STORY

FG Declares Monday Public Holiday

Peter Okunoren

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The Federal Government has declared Monday as Public Holiday to mark the 2019 Eid-ul-Mawlud which is in commemoration of the birthday of the Holy Prophet Muhammad.

Mr Mohammed Manga, Director Press and Public Relations of the Ministry of Interior, announced this in a statement on Thursday in Abuja, NAN reports.

He said the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, congratulated the Muslim faithful on the occasion and enjoined them to live within the virtues and teachings of the Prophet.

He said imbibing the Prophet’s virtues of love, courage, and perseverance would guarantee peace and security in the country.

Aregbesola expressed confidence that the challenges confronting Nigeria at the moment would soon be over and therefore called on Nigerians to remain focused and determined.

He gave the assurance that with the immense potentials the country is endowed with; coupled with its human and natural resources, Nigeria will sooner than later join the league of developed nations.

“With love, commitment, self-sacrifice, patience and patriotism, we will certainly, build a greater Nigeria,” Aregbesola said.

The Minister restated the Government’s desire to ensure a peaceful and secure environment for all Nigerians.

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BIG STORY

BREAKING: Sanwo-Olu Drops ‘Your Excellency’ Title, Says ‘It Is A Symbol Of Executive Arrogance’ [FULL STATEMENT]

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The Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has asked residents to stop using the title, ‘Your Excellency’ where he is concerned.

In a statement on Wednesday, the governor said he preferred to be addressed as ‘Mr. Governor’ to deepen the citizen-government relations.

He said “In the last five months that I have been privileged to exercise the mandate freely given to me by the great and hardworking people of Lagos State, it has come to my consciousness to review certain features of citizen-government relations which impede the genuine expression of the democratic spirit of our society and the meaningful exercise of the sovereignty of our people.

The office of the Governor has been celebrated as the paragon of excellence, a temple of perfection and a throne of purity. This demi-god mystique spreads over the entire machinery of the executive arm of the government, symbolizing an authoritarian disposition on the governed. It has deformed the orientation of elected and appointed persons who are paid from the taxes of the people to see themselves as oppressors who can do no wrong and must be served, rather than serve the people.

Whatever might have been the reason for this myth, let us be honest, the office is occupied by a mortal who has been called upon to serve the electorate with humility – and sincerity. The office of Governor is a public trust that calls for sacrifice, modesty, and willingness to add value to the lives of the people.

Fellow Lagosians, I have come to the conclusion that for us to change the narrative of governance, we have to strike down this seeming symbol of executive arrogance that commands popular obeisance and undermines the democratic role of citizens as the masters of those they have elected and appointed to serve.

It is a conviction that I believe will send the right signals to all politicians and civil servants that service to the people has brought us here. It is the duty we are obliged to do. It is the responsibility that we bear wherever we find ourselves; whenever we are called to serve.

Only God, the Almighty, the Creator, the Protector, is the Most Excellent. No man can share His eternal qualities.

Thenceforth, I wish to be addressed simply as Mr. Governor, a title that will constantly remind me that I have been chosen out of so many fellow compatriots to lead a collective salvage of our political economy. A salutation that sanitizes the paraphernalia of office and reminds us all of our imperfections and mortality. To give official effect to this announcement, I shall issue tomorrow an executive order that will formally ensure full compliance with this new policy.

Babajide Sanwo-Olu
Governor
Lagos State.

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