By Abdullahi Mohammed
…Says Presidency, APC out to embarrass, Frustrate Presidential Ambition
Barely few days after the President of the Senate, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, declared his intention to contest for President in the 2019 General Elections, the presidency has ordered the police and a foremost anti-graft agency to arraign him in court this week over spurious charges, it was learnt on Sunday.
Former Deputy National Publicity of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Timi Frank, who dropped this hint in Abuja, said the planned arraignment of Saraki on cooked-up charges is part of a renewed onslaught by the presidency and the leadership of the APC against Saraki.
Frank in a statement in Abuja said the aim of ASO ROCK and the Adams Oshiomhole-led APC is to embarrass Saraki and frustrate his chances of being nominated by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to run against Buhari during the party’s upcoming presidential primary election.
Frank said: “Events of the last three years has shown that the raison d’être for President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration ferocious attacks against Saraki is based on their phobia that the President of the Senate may contest for President and defeat Buhari in 2019.
“Now that their worst fears have been confirmed by the formal declaration of Saraki to contest the 2019 presidential election last week, they are once again frantically foraging for criminal charges to hang on his neck.
“I have it on good authority that the fresh plot to arraign Saraki this week is the first out of the series of strategies being perfected by Buhari and his cronies at their ongoing ‘business trip’ in China.’
“Recall that in a statement on Friday, I had alerted the nation and the international community that Buhari’s APC Governors, Senators and heads of security agencies studded entourage is not in China to boost trade between both countries but to plot the removal of Saraki and how to rig the 2019 elections in favour of the APC.
“Come to think of it, the French President, Emmanuel Macron, U.K. Prime Minister, Theresa May and German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, all came to Nigeria with a retinue of captains of industries and highly reputed Chief Executive Officers (CEO) of thriving business organizations to prospect for trade and investment opportunities in Nigeria, but Buhari is in China with his wife, an armada of APC politicians and heads of security agencies to plot judicial and extra-judicial measures against the leaders of opposition political parties in the country and how to compromise the 2019 general elections,” Frank declared.
He added: “Recall that I have continued to cry out against the unmitigated intimidation, harassment, persecution, intolerance, vilification, arrests and kangaroo trial being unleashed against those opposed to Buhari’s re-election bid – to the exclusion of his key allies with corruption allegations against them.
“The SATURDAY PUNCH had vindicated me when it chronicled at least eight politicians – there are much more – working for the re-election Buhari in the February 2019 election that have pending corruption cases worth N232billion. Unfortunately, some of the names listed by THE PUNCH are with Mr. President in China as I write,” he declared.
The former APC chieftain however called on Nigerians and members of the international community not to be deceived by the fresh charges being concocted by the Presidency against Saraki.
He insisted that the bogus charges being drafted by the assigned security agencies are simply to frustrate Saraki’s presidential ambition the same way they have tried unsuccessfully in the last three years to emasculate his leadership of the Senate and to remove him from office as President of the Senate.
“It is a proven axiom that no democracy can survive without a vibrant and virile opposition, therefore any attempt to gag opposition political parties in the country and decimate their presidential aspirants for the 2019 elections amounts to another coup against democracy and I call on Nigerians and friends of Nigeria to remain vigilant and continue to speak-up to safeguard the nation’s hard earned democracy.
“Above all, I don’t want Nigerians to forget that Adams Oshiomhole has vowed to get Saraki out of office by hook or crook. He also threatened to end Saraki’s dominance of Kwara politics in 2019.
“Now that Saraki has thrown his hat into the ring for the presidential election, the party in connivance with the presidency is out to sully his name and stop him from participating in the up coming election.
Frank Urges IGP To Resign Over Illegal Money Drop-off by Police Helicopter
Former Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Timi Frank, has called on the Inspector General of Police, Mr. Ibrahim Idris, to resign his appointment over his illegally turning the police into the armed-wing of ruling party.
Frank in a statement in Abuja, said the recent deployment and use of a Police Helicopter to ferry cash to the candidate of the APC in the Irepodun/Ekiti/Oke-Ero/Isin Federal Constituency bye-election in Kwara South on Saturday show that the police is working in cohort with the leadership of the APC to forcefully rig the elections.
It would be recalled that a police Helicopter had on Wednesday landed at the St. Paul Primary School in Omu-Aran, Irepodun Local Government Area of the state which is one of the LGAs where a bye-election is scheduled to take place tomorrow.
The police Helicopter crew on arrival at the school were met in the field by the candidate of the APC in the bye-election, Mr. Tunji Ajuloopin, with his Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV). He later drove off after five huge Ghana-Must-Go bags, believed to be stashed with cash, were off-loaded into his vehicle.
Curiously, the Force Public Relations Officer, Jimoh Moshood, confirmed the illegal job in a statement in Abuja saying the chopper was there on “surveillance patrol and the Airlift of Police Officers for the Election.”
However, the Kwara State Police Command, under whose jurisdiction the election is to be conducted, denied any knowledge of the deployment of police helicopter to Omu-Aran, in sharp contradiction of the claims by Moshood.
Frank called on Nigerians and the members of the International Community to note that this is not the first time the police under Idris is playing shameful partisan roles in aiding the APC to rig elections in the country.
“The use of the police to unduly influence the outcome of elections in any democratic setting is unacceptable and therefore the police must immediately purge itself of partisanship ahead of the 2019 general elections, beginning with the urgent resignation of the IGP.
“Come to think of it, where did the the IGP get the money that he sent a police chopper to drop-off in Omu-Aran for the APC candidate? If it is from the police budget, is that the purpose for which the money was allocated? If it is not from the police coffers, where is the money from?
“Is the police now the new Father Christmas in town, helping to fund elections in parts of the country, while its personnel are obviously lacking adequate remuneration, operational vehicles, communication, crime detection and prevention gadgets? Or is the police taking responsibility for the vote buying saga that has characterized recent elections in the country?
“They did it in Ekiti, Katsina, Bauchi, and recently in Osun. The police was established to serve and protect all Nigerians, irrespective of race, creed or party affiliation. The police under Idris have not only failed in their statutory duties of securing the lives and property of Nigerians but have been turned to an armed-wing of the ruling APC,” he stated.
He called on the presidency to urgently cause the probe of the police helicopter’s suspicious movement and the source of the funds it conveyed to the APC’s candidate as a way of proving to Nigerians that the police did not act at its behest.
He also called on Nigerians to rise and resist police harassment, intimidation, arrest and detention of leaders of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), ahead of the Saturday’s bye-elections in Kwara State.
He further urged the European Union, Britain, USA, Germany and and relevant Non-Governmental Organizations in the country to massively deploy observers to monitor and ensure that the the bye-election is conducted in a free, fair and credible manner.
Frank: How Oshiomhole allegedly collected $50m from aspirants, candidates during Primaries
Former Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Timi Frank, has exposed how the National Chairman of the APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, allegedly collected over $50million from different aspirants and candidates during the primary elections of the party.
Frank said a large percentage of the money was paid to Oshiomhloe through proxies from Imo, Zamfara, Adamawa and Ogun states among others.
Recall that the nation’s secret police had interrogated Oshiomhole, and reportedly did ask him to resign over allegations of bribery and corruption against him.
In a statement signed in Abuja on Thursday, the former APC spokesman threatened to publish the names and amounts paid to lobby the National Chairman to clear aspirants and substitute the names of duly elected candidates with those that failed.
According to Frank, the Department of State Services (DSS) has presented its report and findings against Oshiomhole to President Muhammadu Buhari but the President is still in dilemma on what to do.
“I dare say that this singular act of refusing to order the prosecution of Oshiomhole over sundry acts of bribery and corruption he committed as contained in the DSS report, President Buhari has shown that his APC-led administration is a stinking house of corruption.”
While expressing surprise at Oshiomhole’s latest ordeal, he said the former Labour leader will go down in history as a party chairman who had allegedly received such humongous bribe within a short period of time in office.
Frank, however, called on the President to act on the recommendations of the DSS by ordering : Oshiomhole’s sack and prosecution, if his (Buhari) government is actually fighting corruption or opposition.
“We are in the know that President Muhammadu Buhari has received the DSS report on Adams Oshiomhole and Nigerians are patiently waiting for the action or inaction of his government because this is an administration that has claimed fighting corruption as an achievement.
“In the history of party administration in Nigeria, no party chairman has been accused of collecting the jaw-breaking amount of money allegedly collected within a short period in office like Comrade Oshiomhole has allegedly done.
“Instead of Oshiomhole to clear his name, he has taken to diversionary path asking the Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki to resign. Nigerians are not gullible. We shall wait to see how the acclaimed anti-corruption regime will act on this particular issue.
“This same Oshiomhole has been attacking the Senate President, calling on him to resign on moral ground, can Oshiomhole now step aside while investigation into his financial malfeasance is on going to justify his much talked about morality?” Frank asked.
N5.8bn NEMA scam: Frank Gives Osinbajo 7 days to resign
…Calls on NASS to Impeach him
Former Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Timi Frank, has given the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo SAN, seven (7) days to resign over his flagrant violation of the Constitution and the Public Procurement Act in the approval of N5.8billion as intervention funds for the North East in 2017.
It could be recalled that the House of Representatives in its investigative report had indicted the Vice President following its investigation into the disbursement N5.8billion for intervention food programme in the north east in 2017.
According to the report on the emergency intervention in food security in the North-East to support the population ravaged by insurgency, “a sum of N5,865,671,939.26 was approved and released in June 2017 via a memo raised from the Office of the Acting President, directing the Minister of Finance and the Accountant General of the Federation to so act.
“The details further specified a directive to the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria from the Ministry of Finance to pay the sum from the Consolidated Revenue Fund Account which the AGF is to raise a mandate for.
“This is in contravention of the approval of the National Assembly on the issuance of Euro, Bond from which the Minister authorised payment. The Euro Bond is for specified infrastructural projects and not for discretionary intervention. Furthermore, there is no specific appropriation by the National Assembly.
“This contravenes Section 80 (4) of the 1999 Constitution as amended, which states, ‘No money shall be withdrawn from the Consolidated Revenue Fund or any other public fund of the Federation, except in the manner prescribed by the National Assembly.”
Frank in a statement in Abuja, called on the National Assembly to immediately commence impeachment process against the VP based on the House report and in line with its constitutional mandate to act as a check and balance on the Executive.
He said that with the revelations about Osinbajo’s role in this high level sleaze and the many corruption cases against top aides and appointees of President Muhammadu Buhari, “it is safe to say that the present administration is the worst so far in terms of corruption and circumvention of due process laws in the nation’s democratic history.”
He insisted that the fact that Osinbajo is a senior lawyer and Chairman of the Board of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) – now alleged to have diverted the funds – makes it mandatory for the Vice President to immediately step aside to allow for thorough criminal investigation to determine the veracity or otherwise of the issues collusion and core raised in the House report by security and anti-corruption agencies.
He noted that it is appalling to hear that Osinbajo – despite his public anti-corruption posturing – could be remotely mentioned in a such a scam where funds meant to provide succour for hunger-ravaged Internally Displaced Persons in the North East were allegedly diverted in such brazen manner.
“As a learned gentleman, Osinbajo cannot say he did not know that it is illegal for any government official to spend funds not appropriated by the National Assembly. He should have known that it is intrinsically illegal for anybody to divert funds raised through the issuance of Euro Bond – approved by the National Assembly for specific capital projects – to fund his ‘emergency intervention.’
“What is most telling is that it now appears that the VP used his brief stay as Acting President to open up the nation’s coffers for fleecing in this manner with the approval of the N5.8billion to be disbursed from the Euro Bond account and another N17billion he caused to be released from the Ecological Fund.
“These acts of financial recklessness are most unbecoming of a person of the Vice President’s standing. He has a lot of explanations to render to his Principal – who was on medical vacation at the time – and to Nigerians – whose trust has been rudely shaken by this stinking corruption affair.
“Being a man who enjoys immunity by reason of his office, I call on him to immediately resign his position to enable him appear before the anti-corruption agencies to state his involvement or otherwise in the scam.
“To hide under the toga of Vice President and not face prosecution alongside other NEMA officials indicted by the House of Representatives report on the investigation would amount to a travesty of justice and the selectiveness that has unduly characterised the war against corruption since the inception of the present administration.
“I give the VP seven (7) days to resign his position to enable him face the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission – like ex-Governor Ayodele Fayose did recently – to clear his name.
“Should he fail to heed my humble appeal, I shall have no choice but to commence the process of making available to the public other corruption related information concerning the Vice President that will most certainly shock Nigerians,” Frank stated.
Besides, the National Assembly cannot afford to shirk on its sacred responsibilities to Nigerians, one of which is to hold the executive accountable to the people.
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