Friday, 16 December 2016

Corruption: Buhari Goes After Babachir Lawal Following Damning Reports of Fraud

President Muhammadu Buhari is set to unravel the mystery of political corruption hovering around one of his right-hand men, Babachir Lawal.
Babachir Lawal
The Presidency on Thursday said President Muhammadu Buhari would investigate the corruption allegations leveled against the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Babachir Lawal and consider necessary actions.
Speaking to Punch in an interview, Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, said the president would consider both sides of the matter.
Asked if Lawal will be sacked, the presidential spokesman said the President was a fair-minded person who would look at both sides before taking a decision.
“The SGF has defended himself. The President is very fair minded. He will look at both sides of the matter,” he simply said.
The Senate had at plenary on Wednesday called for the removal and prosecution of the SGF following alleged complicity in the diversion of the North-East humanitarian funds.
This followed the presentation of the interim report of the Ad hoc Committee on Mounting Humanitarian Crisis in the North-East by the Chairman of the Committee, Shehu Sani.
The call for Lawal’s removal followed alleged contravention of the provisions of the Public Procurement Act and the Federal Government’s Financial Rules and Regulations pertaining to award of contracts.
Presenting the report, Sani said some of the contracts were awarded to companies belonging to top government officials’ cronies and family members. He explained that the committee found out that Global Vision Engineering Limited, a company, with Lawal as Director, for instance, was awarded the consultancy contract.
Sani said despite being an IT company, the firm got a job to clear grass in Yobe at N200m

“Although, Lawal resigned the directorship of the said company in September 2016, it is on record that he is a signatory to the accounts of the company,’’ he said.
Lawal has however, denied all the allegations, saying “the Senate is talking balderdash; it has developed a bring-him-down syndrome.”