Ganduje’s commissioner, five others arrested over alleged N1bn fraud

THE Kano State Public Complaints and Anti Corruption Commission has arrested and detained former governor Abdullahi Ganduje’s commissioner for works and Infrastructure, Idris Wada Saleh and five others over alleged N1 billion fraud.

According to Daily Post, the commissioner was arrested alongside the Permanent Secretary of Public Procurement Bureau, Mustapha Madaki Huguma, as well as the director of finance and director of research and planning, on Monday evening.

They were accused of withdrawing about N1 billion for 30 road and drainage rehabilitation projects that were never completed.

According to Daily Post, the money, which was withdrawn in three instalments, was reportedly transferred into the accounts of three companies in April 2023.

The companies are North Stone Construction Company Nig. Ltd, Arfat Multiresources Ltd and 1st Step Construction Ltd.

“Surprisingly, the Public Procurement Bureau even issued a certificate of no objection for the contract after the payment was made ten days earlier, contrary to the Kano State Procurement Act 2021.

“The companies are bogus having almost the same letterhead without tentative office.

“The Due Process Office said the Certificate of No Objection was issued because Kano Road Maintenance Agency said the rehabilitation of the roads would be carried out through direct labour, but the papers submitted read otherwise,” an unnamed source told the newspaper.

The Daily Post added that the Commission’s spokesperson Abba Kabir confirmed that those arrested are undergoing interrogation and would be arraigned before the court immediately investigation is completed.

The ICIR reported on June 21 that the Kano State governor, Abba Kabir Yusuf, reinstated the state chairman of the Public Complaints and Anti-corruption Commission (PCACC), Muhuyi Magaji, whom his predecessor, Abdullahi Ganduje sacked.

The state House of Assembly had suspended Magaji, a lawyer, and Ganduje then sacked him in January.

But he challenged his sack in court, and the court ordered his reinstatement.






     

     

    In a statement that his chief press secretary Sanusi Tofa issued on Wednesday, June 21, Yusuf agreed with the court that Magaji was wrongly sacked.

    The reinstated Magaji promised to revive the alleged dollar bribery investigation against Ganduje.

    Videos of Ganduje allegedly receiving $5 million in kickbacks from contractors were made public by a newspaper, Daily Nigerian.

    Magaji has insisted that the matter will be thoroughly probed even though the former governor had disputed the accusation, claiming the video was doctored, and went to court to seek damages.

    Also, during his swearing-in on May 29, Yusuf expressed sadness over the N241 billion debt left by Ganduje’s administration.

    “We will carefully study the reports and come out with our position on the debt and other matters,” Yusuf said.

    In a chat with The ICIR on Tuesday, July 4, the newly sworn-in commissioner for information Baba Halilu Dantiye said he cannot confirm the arrests yet because he is not in the state presently.

    “I cannot confirm the news now; I only saw it in newspapers. I am not in Kano. now,” he said.

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