The pan-northern socio-political organisation, Arewa Consultative Forum, on Sunday asked President Muhammadu Buhari to expedite action on the report of the Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo’s three-man presidential committee that probed the suspended Director General of National Intelligence Agency, Ambassador Ayo Oke and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, David Lawal Babachir.
Other members of the Committee include National Security Adviser to the President, Maj. Gen. Babagana Monguno (retd.) and the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN).
The committee was set up on April 19 and was given the mandate of turning in its report within 14 days.
The committee was to probe Oke for his connection with the $43.4m, £27,800 and N23.2m uncovered at the 7th floor of a four-bedroom apartment at Osborne Towers located at 16 Osborne Road, Ikoyi, Lagos by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on April 12, this year.
It was also mandated to probe Babachir over how his office spent over N12bn allocated for the rehabilitation of the internally displaced persons in the North-East, particularly the award of a N270m grass-cutting contract by the Presidential Initiative on the North-East .
Osinbajo had since submitted the panel’s report to President Muhammadu Buhari but the President had yet to act on it.
Asked to give the position of the ACF on the report, the forum noted that it was not in the best position to know why it was taking the President too long to act on the matter.
However, the Forum said it was its view that the report should receive the necessary attention from the Presidency.
The National Publicity Secretary of the Forum, Alhaji Muhammad Ibrahim Biu, who responded on behalf of the ACF on Sunday, told our correspondent in Kaduna that the ACF “called for prompt action from the Presidency…” on the matter.
Biu said, “The ACF is not in the best position as to know why it is taking the President a long time to act on the Osinbajo panel’s report. The question should be directed to the Presidency please. However, the ACF is of the view that the report should receive priority attention of Mr. President in view of the calibre of officials involved in the alleged misapplication of public funds and the controversy the issues have generated.
“ACF therefore calls for prompt action by the Presidency in line with the government’s position on due process and transparency in governance.”
But a northern group, the Arewa Youth Forum, said it was disturbed by the sluggish manner the Presidency was handling the matter.
The National President of the AYF, Mr. Gambo Gujungu, while expressing the group’s dismay over the inability of the Presidency to act on the panel’s report, knocked President Buhari for his lacklustre performance in office.
He said in a statement on Sunday that the APC led government had inflicted hardship on the same Nigerians that brought it on board, bearing in mind the maladministration of the Peoples Democratic Party’s government.
According to him, youths from the North were worried about the prevailing situation in the country where “majority of Nigerians languish in abject poverty and penury, where people can no longer eat two times a day let alone three square meals a day.”
He said, “Instead we are daily inundated with news of alleged graft, in-house fighting and at other times mundane issues from this government that was given so much by the Nigerian people who have yet to see the fruit of their sacrifice and battle to root out the Peoples Democratic Party that failed to live up to the expectations of the people after 16 years in power.
“While we are not unaware of the rot and desolate situation that the All Progressives Congress, and its main standard bearer, President Muhammadu Buhari met on ground, we also make bold to say that we, nay Nigerians, expected better performance from the PMB, led administration more than two years in the saddle. Let the President and his co-travellers knows that majority of Nigerians were in unison that the PDP failed, even your party, the APC know that fact and we believe that is why they came with the change mantra.
“But alas, two years down the road, many things have refused to change and instead the downward slope from the previous administration that Nigerians so much abhor and voted massively against and in favour of the APC and for President Buhari as an individual has continued unabated.”
Saying that the sluggishness in the administration’s handling of salient matter had left much to be desired, Gujungu noted that months after the Osinbajo’s panel had submitted its report, nothing had been heard of the final report.
“The sluggishness of this administration in tackling some salient issues of governance has left so much to be desired. Up till now, Nigerians are still waiting for the report of the Osinbajo committee that investigated the suspended Secretary to the Government of the Federation and the Nigeria Intelligence Agency boss, government has continued to keep mute,” he said.