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Inec Staff Accused Of Receiving Bribe From Deziani Still On Commission’s Payroll



All staff of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) being investigated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) are still working and receiving salaries.

Findings revealed that the staff, who the EFCC accused of receiving various sums of money to influence the general elections in 2015 are still working with the electoral body.

INEC Chairman, Professor Yakubu Mahmoud, said recently that over 100 staff of the Commission are under investigation.

The INEC boss said: “so far, over a hundred staff of INEC have been invited. At a point, we toyed with the idea of speaking to the EFCC to see the weight of evidence they have so that we can take administrative action against our staff, but they are innocent until they are proven guilty. They have to be charged to court, but we have taken notice and we have a complete list.”

A total of N23.29b was disbursed under the poll bribery scam allegedly facilitated by the former Minister of Petroleum Resources and Peoples Democratic Party chieftain, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke.

The EFCC had indicted the Resident Electoral Commissioner in the 2015 election in Rivers State, Mrs. Gesila Khan, for allegedly collecting N185.8m from the money. She still holds sway in her official capacity.

Just last week the anti-graft body was reported to have seized two choice shopping malls from her, allegedly acquired with money believed to be from her share of the bribe.

A sum of N49 million found in an bank account belonging to her was said to have also been frozen by the EFCC.

One Fidelia Omoile, who was the INEC electoral officer in the Isoko-South Local Government Area of Delta State, allegedly got N112.4m.

Apart from tracing over N112m to her, the Commission also recovered some sensitive electoral materials during a search on her apartments in Edo and Delta States.

The Commission also arrested one Oluchi Brown, who was the INEC administrative Secretary in Delta State. She allegedly received over N111m.

Further investigations by detectives revealed that Brown had about $75,857 in an account in the United States. She is currently at large.

The anti-graft agency also arrested one Edem Effanga, who is a retired INEC official.

He was arrested alongside his alleged accomplice, Immaculata Asuquo, who is the Head, Voter Education, INEC, Akwa Ibom State.

He was alleged to have received over N241.1m, which he allegedly shared among INEC ad hoc workers during the last election.

In Gombe too, 11 officials of the Commission were quizzed in connection with the receipt and sharing of N120 million to compromise the election.

The bribe was allegedly negotiated and collected on behalf of the INEC staff by the electoral officers for Akko and and Gombe Local Government Councils , Ahmed Biu, and Mohammed Zannah from one Yunusa Ali Biri, a retired INEC official in the state, who acted as Gombe State coordinator for electoral officers during the poll.

According to the anti-graft agency’s finding, Biri was ingeniously designated and addressed as the “Coordinator of NGOs” in a bid to cover his identity for the dubious assignment.

The EFCC sources said: “The Electoral officers for Akko LGA and Gombe LG, Ahmed Ali Biu, and Mohammed.B.Zannah, admitted to have collected the bribe from one Yunusa Ali Biri, also a retired Electoral officer who acted as Gombe State coordinator of bribes for electoral officers in the State.”

The names of other electoral officers who reportedly collected the bribe, according to EFCC records were given as: Godwin Maiyaki Gambo, Balanga LGA, Bukar Alone Benisheik, Dukku LGA, Jibril. B. Muhammed,Billiri LGA, Dunguma Musa Dogona, Funakaye LGA, Mohammed. A. Wanka, Kaltungo LGA, Ishaku Yusuf, Kwami LGA, Suleiman Isawa, Nafada LGA, Babagana Malami, Shongom LGA, and Nuhu Samuel, Y/Deba LGA.

Investigations have however revealed that all of them are still on the payroll of the Commission.

The Civil Service Regulations Handbook, under Section B – Disciplinary Procedures: No. 9. Withholding Pay during Suspension: states: “Only in cases where there is strong prima facie evidence relating to the misappropriation of public funds or where a civil servant has been charged and remanded in custody awaiting trial, or the civil servant has been convicted of a criminal offence, should pay be withheld, in whole or in part, when suspension occurs under this paragraph…”

The question now arises, has prima facie case not been established against these staff, whose houses have been seized and accounts frozen? What of those who have confessed to the crime?

At the INEC headquarters in Abuja, a source who did not want his name in print, disclosed that the staff are still with the Commission.

He said no punitive action can be taken against them until they are found guilty by the court.

When asked whether it was proper for them to still be receiving salaries and entitlements, considering the huge sums of money they were alleged to have received as bribe, and if they ought not to go on suspension pending investigation and trial, he said it was a matter of civil service rule.

Rotimi Oyekanmi, Chief Press Secretary to the Chairman of INEC, also confirmed that they are still staff of Commission.

He said the Commission is still studying the situation carefully before taking action.

“Yes, they are still staff of the Commission. There are other names still coming up. The EFCC too has kept coming up with new names. Over a 100 of them now are under investigation, until they are proven guilty there is nothing we can do about it now.

“It is administrative rule and again we don’t know yet the next because lots of things are coming up. We are studying the situation carefully before any action is taken,” he said.

Of those who already confessed to the crime and whose properties seized and account frozen, he said: “We cannot treat one case in isolation. As far the case is the same, we cannot for now isolate one. Don’t forget there is legal basis to it too, we don’t want to go against the law”, he summed.

(The Street Journal)


Parrot Xtra Publisher Celebrates Hassan Fatungase At 60




 Publisher of Parrot Xtra Magazine/, Olayinka Agboola has sent out expressive greetings to his long-time friend and brother, Alhaji Hassan Taiwo Fatungase, former Bakers’ World, Ikeja, Lagos Director on the occasion of his 60th birthday anniversary.


In a statement  personally signed by Agboola, former Nigeria Coordinator for Ovation International Magazine described Alhaji Hassan Fatungase as the most selfless Nigerian he has ever encountered.

Agboola continued, “Hassan is not only selfless, he is intelligent, forward looking, hard-working, vibrant, resourceful, compassionate and above all, very God-fearing.”

The Ibadan-based media entrepreneur then went ahead to submit that the astute technocrat is a man who appreciates human beings and the value of friendship.

“Those who attended the University of Lagos with him in those days will attest to it that ‘Fatuu’, as he used to be called then would sacrifice anything to keep a working-relationship.


“Even when he joined one of the five-star hotels in Abuja in the early 90s, it did not take long before he was promoted to become the very first African to occupy a managerial position before he joined the Bakers’ World family business in Lagos. His records are still there till today.

Feats At Bakers’ World

“While running Bakers’ World located on Allen Avenue in Ikeja, Lagos, journalists, broadcasters, creative young Nigerians and others were encouraged by him. The records are also there for people to verify. There is almost no big name in the entertainment/media industry in Nigeria today that has not directly and/or indirectly benefitted from Hassan’s large-heartedness. As a matter of fact, he used to settle quarrels when differences and ‘head-on-collisions’ were reported to him!”

Agboola also went ahead to describe how the celebrant of the day has been faring since he became the chairman of Abimbola Awoliyi Estate, Oko-Oba in Lagos where he presently lives.

“Hassan is team-player and a man who keeps improving in good-naturedness even as a semi-retired bureaucrat. Residents of Awoniyi Estate will tell his story better. Since he became the chairman some three years ago, living standards have since improved.

“Together with other executive members, the Estate has been winning awards as one of the best in the whole of Lagos State. Solar lights, good roads, fibre-optic-source of internet, faultless security architecture and enhanced sociability…and other achievements have been recorded by the Fatungase-led team.”

Agboola, who was also a pioneer staff at Thisday Newspaper concluded “Dear friends and colleagues, please join me to pray for this quintessential lover of fairness and equity. May Allah continue to be with him, grant him sound health, more prosperity, divine protection and long life. May his wonderful family comprised of ‘Iyalaje’ Doyinsola and the children- Tomisin, Ahmed, Ibrahim and Idris continue to enjoy divine grace too. Happy birthday to our Director at Parrot Xtra Media Network, many happy returns of this day, September 26.”

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‘our silence is not an act of cowardice’ Olugbon Replies Obasanjo




-Ayotunde Ayanda
The Olugbon of Ile-Ogbon, Oba Francis Alao has reacted to the recent public ridicule where former President Olusegun Obasanjo ordered some Oyo monarchs to stand up.
Some people interpreted it as a reprisal of an attack from the Olugbon, Oba Francis Olusola Alao against the former President in a radio interview where the monarch condemned Chief Obasanjo for opposing the ambition of President Bola Tinubu.
Chief Obasanjo was unapologetic as he defended his actions claiming the monarchs disrespected the Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde.
The Olugbon in  his response  called  it  an internal issue and hinted it will be addressed in the Oyo Council of  Obas next meeting.
Below is the message from the Olugbon’s palace…
The outburst of former president Chief Olusegun Obasanjo against traditional rulers in attendance at the inauguration of the Iseyin Campus of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) on Friday September 15  has generated anger and varied responses from true sons and daughters of Oduduwa in all sections of the society.
First and foremost, I will like to emphasize that the inauguration ceremony was a huge success while the road and campus projects represent another milestone in the development strides of Governor Seyi Makinde who has been working hard to take Oyo State to the next level of development.
All the royal fathers involved understand the pain caused by the incident and appreciate the well-placed reactions.
I wish to state that the incident is an internal affair which will be properly reviewed at the next meeting of the Oyo State Council of Obas and Chiefs.
Let me assure all Yoruba, and other well-meaning Nigerians who have respect for the traditional institution, and who feel concerned about the incident that our silence since Friday is not an act of cowardice. When we sit down with the Governor, and hold our next meeting, we will review and respond appropriately.
Our Governor respects us, and traditional rulers in Oyo State also hold him in high esteem.
I, therefore, sue for calm over this issue.
We want everybody to apply decorum in line with the Omoluwabi ethos for which Yoruba are greatly respected. Ile Yoruba land shall remain peaceful. Our unity is sacrosanct. These ethos must reflect in our day-to-day activities.
Let it, however, be well noted that traditional rulers in Oyo State have no regret in supporting Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and Governor Seyi Makinde in the last election, and will be willing to support them even in the future.
This is the clear position of monarchs in Oyo State. Any other information from anywhere that is contrary to this should be disregarded.
Oba Francis Olushola Alao
Olugbon of Orile-Igbon
Deputy Chairman,
Oyo State Council of Obas and Chiefs
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‘go and make us proud’ Dollar Construction Boss, Idowu Lamidi Tasks New FIRS Boss, Zaccheus Adedeji




Construction guru, Idowu Lamidi has praised the appointment of Zaccheus Adedeji as the acting Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service.
Lamidi who is the Chairman of Dollar Construction described Adedeji’s appointment as the right peg in the right hole.
While speaking with journalists in his Abuja office, Lamidi praised President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, claiming all the appointments he has made so far as an indication of what he wants to achieve and finding the best hands that would make his job easier.
The real estate guru whose company owns the Dollar Estate in Ibadan called Zaccheus a very intelligent man that will turn around the FIRS.
‘not many of us were surprised when the announcement came, we all know what he achieved as the Commissioner for Finance under the late Governor Abiola Ajimobi. He is a brilliant man and he has proved what he is capable of doing at all times. We are happy that President Bola Tinubu is a promise-keeper and he is generous to us in Oyo State. No one can fault any of his appointments because these are qualified people. I wish Mr Adedeji the best and also call on God Almighty to always be with him’.  says  Lamidi.
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