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Kaduna Assembly recommends El-Rufai’s prosecution over alleged money laundering

KADUNA State House of Assembly has recommended that the former governor Nasir El-Rufai be prosecuted over allegations of money laundering and abuse of office.

According to a report, this occurred on Wednesday, June 5, 2024, after an ad-hoc committee set up to investigate the allegations submitted its report.

The committee was led by its chairman Henry Zacharia. Its findings revealed that several loans obtained by the Kaduna government under El-Rufai’s administration were not used for intended purposes.

The committee also reported that due process was not followed in securing some of the loans, and in awarding certain contracts.

Some of El-Rufai’s cabinet members were also indicted in the report.

Upon receiving the report, Speaker of the Kaduna House of Assembly Yusuf Liman said El-Rufai’s government siphoned N423 billion.

“The committee, therefore, recommended the investigation and prosecution of the ex-governor and some other indicted members of his cabinet by security and anti-corruption agencies for abuse of office through the award of contracts without due process, diversion of public funds, and money laundering,” the report stated.

In March 2024, Kaduna Governor Uba Sani blamed El-Rufai for the state’s debt and his government’s inability to pay salaries, despite helping to secure some of the loans that contributed to this while representing the state at the Senate.




     

     

    In 2020, while he served as chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions, Sani had spoken in favour of a $350 million loan, which the Kaduna state government under El-Rufai, sought.

    Sani assumed responsibility before legislators at the Senate, for what he considered the unlikely possibility that El-Rufai would fail in the utilisation of the loan.

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    “I even insist that I, Senator Uba Sani be held liable if the Governor fails or disappoints. But of course, I know Mallam Nasir el-Rufai will never fail the people of Kaduna State. I am extremely happy and proud of the role some of us played in securing this loan for Kaduna State,” Sani said.

    He also extolled El-Rufai during his inauguration, describing him as a leader who left a legacy of transformational leadership in the state, although current events suggest that the relationship between both men is no longer as cordial.

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    Ijeoma Opara is a journalist with The ICIR. Reach her via [email protected] or @ije_le on Twitter.

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