N13bn Ikoyi cash: EFCC takes charge of NIA’s bank accounts; Senate queries CBN, NNPC, 36 others over late submission of their 2017 budgets; Pro-Biafra: Kanu disowns Radio Biafra based in America; FCC gives DSS three-month ultimatum to explain ‘lopsided’ appointments; FG amends charges against SC Justice Ngwuta; Ambode ‘permanently’ bans VIO in Lagos, FRSC to work at fringes; FAAN Commences Screening of Flights Following Ebola Outbreak in DRC; Nigerians reacted on social media to Dino’s new book on corruption . .
The EFCC has taken charge of the bank accounts operated by the NIA in the latest in a string of measures against the agency in the wake of last month’s discovery of N13 billion in a Lagos apartment, according to Premium Times. The cash – comprising $43.5 million, £27,800 and N23.2 million hidden inside Apartment 7B at Osborne Towers, Ikoyi – was uncovered by operatives of the EFCC on April 12.
The EFCC designated a brigadier general in the Nigerian Army, to assume the position of the Director of Finance of the NIA and commence a holistic audit of the agency’s finances. Security officials have questioned their legality, given the special status accorded the NIA by the National Security Agencies Act of 2004, prohibiting interference in its financial dealings.
The Senate on Tuesday queried the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) and 35 other federal agencies over the delay in the submission of their budgets. The agencies and corporations are mandated in line with the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007 to submit their budgets to the National Assembly for scrutiny and passage. The Deputy Senate Leader, Senator Bala Ibn Na’Allah (APC, Kebbi) who raised a point of order during plenary said the agencies are supposed to submit their budgets in September last year.
The leader of the pro-Biafra group Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) Nnamdi Kanu has dissociated himself and members of his association from a Radio Biafra based and broadcasting from the United States of America. In a statement issued on Monday by his lawyer, Ifeanyi Ejiofor, Kanu said the official voice of IPOB remains the Radio Biafra based in London, registered under the relevant laws in the United Kingdom (UK). He said a supposed Radio Biafra, said to have been recently launched in the US is not known to him and his members, and did not represent their interests. Kanu also urged IPOB members to observe the sit-at-home planned for May 30 this year peacefully. He said the exercise was to remember Biafran heroes who died during the Civil War.
The Federal Character Commission (FCC) has demanded an urgent explanation from the Department of State Services (DSS) over the recent ‘lopsided’ appointments into the organization. FCC Chairman, Dr. Shettima Abba, said the commission had given the DSS a three-month ultimatum to explain the alleged lopsided appointment or face appropriate sanctions. According to reports, the DSS recruited 51 persons from Katsina state alone whereas all the states in the South South got a combined 42 candidates.
The Federal Government on Tuesday amended the corruption charges it preferred against Supreme Court Justice Sylvester Ngwuta before a Federal High Court in Abuja. The additional count was earlier removed in the previous amendment done in March this year. The re-introduced count has to do with the allegation that Justice Ngwuta gave false information to the Nigerian Immigration Service concerning his diplomatic passport with the purpose of procuring another one. He was also accused, as contained in the previous charges, of giving various cash sums of money above the statutory threshold to his building contractor for the building of various houses in his home state, Ebonyi State, without going through a financial institution Three amendments have now been done to the charges originally filed in December 2016.
The Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, on Tuesday banned the Vehicle Inspection Officer(s) (VIO) from Lagos roads permanently. Governor Ambode, who said this at the commissioning of Pedestrian Bridges and Slip Road at Ojodu Berger, also urged the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) to limit its operations to the fringes and highways and stay clear from the main streets of Lagos state. He said the decisions were in line with his administration’s resolve to ensure free flow of traffic across Lagos, noting that their activities were contributing to traffic congestion on Lagos roads.
Following the outbreak (again) of the deadly Ebola virus in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) on Monday said that it has commenced screening of every inbound flight into the country, especially those from Central African countries and the rest of the world. According to the acting General Manager, Corporate Affairs, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Henrietta Yakubu, “We have started the screening of passengers coming into the country. The move is to prevent any unforeseen circumstances. The moment they arrive, we give them forms to fill. Before then, they go through the thermal scanner being installed by the Port Health Services.” Yakubu explained that if FAAN is not vigilant, it won’t be able to detect possible carriers of the disease and “you won’t know that they are there”.
Senator Dino Melaye (Kogi West) launched his book titled ‘Antidotes to Corruption’ in Abuja on Monday and Nigerians aren’t quite pleased with the spectacle of the whole show because the guests (especially the VIP invitees) who attended the book launch are some of Nigeria’s most controversial politicians. Many Nigerians went ballistic on social media deriding the assemblage and their corruption-averse credentials to Dino’s Antidotes to Corruption in Nigeria. Dino’s book launch guests included ex-First Lady Patience Jonathan, Senate President Bukola Saraki, Speaker House of Representatives Hon. Yakubu Dogara, ex-Gov. Chris Ngige et al.
Senator Dino Melaye launched his book “Antidote to Corruption” and surprised Nigerians with his choice of chairperson, Dame Patience Jonathan. People are particularly surprised because they do not belong to the same political party.
The guest list to Dino’s Abuja book launch includes — Deputy President of the Senate, Sen. Ike Ekweremadu, the minister of Federal Capital Territory, Alhaji Bello Mohammed, ex-secretary to the government of the federation, Dr. Anyim Pius Anyim. Others are the Clerk of the National Assembly, Alhaji Molori, serving and past members of the National Assembly, with Former President of Ghana, Jerry Rawlings and chairman of Dangote Groups, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, ably represented.