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If You Want To Serve Nigeria, Be Prepared For The Worst — Buhari

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President Muhammadu Buhari says whoever is interested in serving Nigeria needs to be prepared for the “worst”.

According to a statement on Tuesday by Femi Adesina, presidential spokesperson, Buhari said this on Monday at a state banquet in his honour in Damaturu, the capital of Yobe.

Speaking about his administration’s fight against corruption, the president said curtailing the menace has “not been easy” under the current system operated by Nigeria.

“In the north-east, God has helped us to clear Boko Haram; the economy has picked up, and some people are asking me about the achievements of my promise to fight corruption,” he said.

“Well, under this system, fighting corruption is not easy. When I was in the military, as head of state, I locked up some people because the constitution says you must declare your assets, and people who couldn’t explain the differences in their assets, I locked them up. In the end, I was also locked up.

“So, if you want to serve this country, you must be prepared for the worst. But one thing that I am grateful to God for is that nobody can blackmail me.”

The president also said he doesn’t have any land outside Nigeria, adding that he intends to stay in the country after leaving office.

“I do not have one square inch outside Nigeria and I intend to stay in Nigeria when I retire from public office,” he said.

“As I said more than 30 years ago, we have no other country than Nigeria. We must all stay here and salvage it together.

“Between 2003 and 2019, I visited all the local government areas in this country. In 2019, when I attempted re-election, I visited every state and the number of people that came out to see who this Buhari is and was is more than what anybody can pay or force.

“So, I thank God that Nigerians understood me and I made a promise that I will serve God and Nigerians.”

The development comes weeks after Buhari told King Charles III that he does not own a house in the United Kingdom.

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Yahaya Bello Took $720k From State Treasury To Pay His Child’s School Fees — EFCC Chairman Olukoyede

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) chairman, Ola Olukoyede, claims that Yahaya Bello, the former governor of Kogi, took out $720,000 to cover his child’s upfront school fees.

Olukoyede made this known in Abuja on Tuesday during an interactive session with media executives.

The head of EFCC claimed that the former governor of Kogi transferred funds to a bureau de change operator and utilised them to pay his child’s school fees ahead of time.

Olukoyede added that Bello made the payment in anticipation that his tenure was gradually coming to an end.

“A sitting governor, because he knew he was leaving office, moved money directly from the government to bureau de change and used it to pay his child’s school fee in advance,” the EFCC boss said.

“Over $720,000 in anticipation that he was going to leave the government house. In a poor state like Kogi, you want me to close my eyes under the guise of ‘I’m being used’. Used by who? At this stage of my life.”

Olukoyede said he inherited the case file of the former Kogi governor, noting that he did not initiate the investigation against Bello.

On April 17, EFCC operatives laid siege on Bello’s residence in Abuja to arrest him over alleged N80 billion fraud.

While the EFCC operatives were at Bello’s residence, Usman Ododo, governor of Kogi, came to visit his predecessor.

Shortly after Ododo departed from the residence, the EFCC operatives also left the house.

Bello was reportedly rescued by Ododo when he departed his residence located in the Wuse Zone 4 district of Abuja.

Subsequently, the anti-graft agency declared the former governor wanted.

The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has also placed Bello on a watchlist.

The anti-graft agency alleged that Bello, alongside Alli Bello, chief of staff to Ododo; and one Daudu Suleiman, diverted about N80.2 billion belonging to the Kogi government.

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I’ll Tender Resignation If Yahaya Bello Is Not Prosecuted — EFCC Chairman Olukoyede

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The chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ola Olukoyede, has threatened to resign if he does not bring Yahaya Bello, the former governor of Kogi State, to justice.

Olukoyede gave a speech in Abuja on Tuesday during an engaging conversation with media executives.

“If I do not personally oversee the completion of the investigation regarding Yahaya Bello, I will tender my resignation as the EFCC chair,” he said.

The EFCC boss also vowed that everyone involved in obstructing Bello’s arrest from his Abuja residence will face the full wrath of the law.

He also said he invited Bello to his office for a more respectful and dignified interrogation, but that the ex-governor wanted EFCC operatives to grill him in his village instead.

“I called Yahaya Bello, as a serving governor, to come to my office to clear himself. I shouldn’t have done that,” he said.

“But he said that because a certain senator has planted over 100 journalists in my office, he would not come.

“I told him that he would be allowed to use my private gate to give him a cover, but he said my men should come to his village to interrogate him.”

Olukoyede said the EFCC did not violate any law while trying to arrest the former governor from his residence.

“Rather, we have obeyed the law. I inherited the case and I didn’t create it. Why has he not submitted himself to the law?” he asked.

“I have arraigned two past governors who have been granted bail now—WWillie Obiano and Abdulfatah Ahmed.

“We would have gone after Bello since January but we waited for the court order.

“As early as 7 am, my gallant men were there. Over 50 of them. They mounted surveillance.

“We met over 30 armed policemen there. We would have exchanged fire and there would have been casualties.

“My men were about to move in when the governor of Kogi drove in and they later changed the narrative.”

He vowed that all those who have dipped their hands into the public till would be investigated and prosecuted.

“If I can do Obiano, Abdulfatah Ahmed and Chief Olu Agunloye, my kinsman, why not Yahaya Bello?” Olukoyede said.

The EFCC is prosecuting Bello on 19 counts bordering on alleged money laundering and misappropriation of public funds to the tune of N80.2 billion.

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Cartels, Saboteurs Frustrating Efforts To Stabilise Power Supply — Adelabu

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The minister of power, Adebayo Adelabu, claims that “saboteurs and cartels” are impeding the national government’s attempts to establish a reliable supply of electricity.

Speaking on Tuesday in Abuja, Adelabu addressed the audience at a presentation titled “Confronting Nigeria’s Power Challenge as the Nation Migrates to a Multi-Tier Electricity Market.”

According to NAN, the programme was organised by the house of representatives committee on power.

“We have saboteurs, cartels, and those who prefer to perpetrate evil for their selfish interests to frustrate our efforts,” Adelabu said.

Adelabu said all efforts must be geared towards propelling the country to the league of productive nations, adding that Nigeria is looking at reserves that would eliminate incessant power collapses.

He said the federal government is also considering the liberalisation of the power sector.

“We also encourage the state government to invest in power generation in their states,” the minister said.

Adelabu said Abia is one of the states that has invested in power, disclosing that the federal executive council (FEC) has also granted Ekiti and Enugu the right to generate tariffs — meaning that the states would be responsible for power generation, transmission, supply, trading, and system operations.

The minister also expressed concern that a lot of investors did not come with their private equity, saying they had to borrow money from the bank to operate in the sector.

He, however, said with time, investors would be made to operate the right way for the benefit of the sector.

The politician also said the federal government is planning on deepening rural electrification in collaboration with the state governments.

On electricity projects, Adelabu said there are over 100 uncompleted power projects across the country.

He said the projects would not be energy-efficient without being completed.

Also speaking, Kola Adeshina, the group managing director of Sahara Power Group, expressed regret that Nigeria cannot supply electricity efficiently despite its abundant gas resources.

He said if electricity was not a priority in the budget provision, it would be difficult for the country to work, stressing that Nigeria has the resources to double its power generation.

“If the executive brings an appropriation bill before you (lawmakers) and the power sector is not number two after defence, then don’t allow it,” Adeshina said.

Adeshina urged the government to prioritise industrial areas in power distribution.

“After the industrial areas have had light during the day, we can shift power at night to residential areas because production takes place during the day,” he said.

“Let’s sequence our investment along the line of value-added. Nigerians are resilient, we are strong, and we have tenacity. Nigerians are tired of power collapse.”

On April 22, the minister had said the federal government would sell off five electricity distribution companies (DisCos) under the management of banks and Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) in the next three months to technical power operators.

He also said the ministry would prevail on the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) to revoke underperforming licenses and change the management board of the DisCos — if it becomes the solution.

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