A social media aide to former Governor of Bauchi State, Mukhtar Jibril, has debunked the allegation that his principal, Mohammed Abubakar, spent the sum of N2.3 billion for the purchase of woods and shrouds for burial of dead bodies at the Bauchi Muslims cemetery saying 1.2 billion was actually expended.
Reacting to the allegation made by the Spokesperson to governor Bala Mohammed, Dr. Ladan Salihu, in a press statement issued to journalists on Tuesday, Jibril said the statement that the former governor spent 2.3 billion is not true.
Jibril claimed that the ex-governor inherited the practice of purchasing the burial materials for the graveyard from his predecessors.
He said “In response to the media activists on the issue of mahogany and shrouds procured for burials, we want to state that, this is a practice inherited by the government of M.A Abubakar from its predecessors. Reeling its significance and impacts on the people especially the bereaved ones, it decided to continue with it.”
“However, the project like any other one of the same magnitude was awarded to qualified contractors. Based on the available verifiable record, a total sum of N1,270,743,520 had been expended since its practice and not the exaggerated figure of 2.3bn mischievously posted on the social media by critics.”
“We urge the good people of Bauchi state to disregard this insinuation and act of desperation by elements of retrogression.”
”Besides, every contract awarded was subjected to the scrutiny and appraisal of the due process agency in accordance with public procurement law, contract agreement, payment of tax due on such contracts and other requirements.”
”Therefore, the figure posted was maliciously misquoted hence blatant lies, misleading and bunkum calculated to portray the previous government in bad light to the innocent people of the state.” He said.
Meanwhile, an Anti-graft group, the Coalition against financial crime and injustice, has threatened to sue the Economic and Financial Crime Commission, EFCC, for not prosecuting the former Bauchi Governor over alleged fraudulent act and corrupt practices.
Chairman of the group, Alh. Dogo Bibi, on Tuesday said “we have filed several petitions to the commission against various alleged corrupt practices by the former governor we have many copies of acknowledgment as evidenced to show that the commission received our petitions but they remained silent”
Dogo said further “We don’t know why the EFCC were still silent over the issue if they were unable to investigate him because he has immunity at that time, now that he left office he has no any immunity for that he should be prosecuted or else we will be left with no option but to sue the commission and its chairman before the court so that Court will compel them to investigate and prosecute the former governor”
“We are not happy with the lukewarm attitude of the anti-graft commission, because their refusal to prosecute the former governor will definitely put a dent and bring disrepute to the President Muhammadu Buhari much-touted anti-corruption fight before Nigerians and the international community”
“We have given a two weeks ultimatum to the EFCC to show cause why they refused to prosecute the former governor in a court of competent jurisdiction without which we will be left no option than to drag the anti-graft commission and it chairman to court”