The Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) has described recent forfeitures secured by anti-graft agencies in various courts as a vivid reminder of the rapacious years of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the success of the ongoing war against corruption by the Buhari administration.
According to the group, this is the judicial confirmation of an era that financial malfeasances by top officials of previous administrations almost brought Nigeria to its knees.
In a statement signed by its Chairman Niyi Akinsiju and Secretary Cassidy Madueke, BMO said it was gratifying that the anti-corruption crusade of President Muhammadu Buhari is yielding desired outcomes.
“We invite Nigerians to take a look at the recent forfeitures from former top military officers and the immediate past Registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Professor Dibu Ojerinde, in the light of what the present government is doing in upscaling Nigeria’s military armament and the new lease of life at JAMB.
” Just imagine a former Director of Finance at the Nigerian Air Force, Air Vice-Marshal Jacobs Adigun having to forfeit 12 choice property in upper scale areas of Abuja and Lagos, which the EFCC believes to be proceeds of a N21.4bn fraud allegedly perpetrated with Air Commodore Olugbenga Gbadebo and a former Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Adesola Amosu (retd) from security funds.
“There is also the case of a former commander of the military Joint Task Force, Operation Pulo Shield, in the Niger Delta, Major General Emmanuel Atewe (retd) who is temporarily forfeiting N293m, six parcels of land and 30,000 MTN shares which are suspected to have been part of proceeds of N8.5bn allegedly diverted from the military operations between September 5, 2014, and May 20, 2015.
” But the one that has attracted the most attention is that of Professor Ojerinde, the PDP appointee at JAMB who was in office from 2007 to 2016, but never remitted, in 11, years anything close to the N5bn paid in by the incumbent Registrar Professor Ishaq Oloyede in one year.
” We recall that the then Finance Minister Kemi Adeosun in 2017 publicly aroused suspicion of corruption when she wondered where all the previously unremitted funds were, but Nigerians now have a clear answer to that question.
“Among the assets to be forfeited by the ex-JAMB Registrar are a mansion in high brow Abuja district of Maitama, five property in other parts of Abuja, a radio station, a marble factory, three schools, four filling stations, a gas plant as well as a house in Ghana, to mention just a few.
” These are just some of the high profile white-collar crimes that characterized the PDP years which this administration has unveiled, and not even the defection of Professor Ojerinde to the All Progressives Congress (APC) could stop the ICPC from doing its job”, the statement added.
BMO consequently commended the anti-graft agencies and the judiciary for rising to the occasion.
“The anti-graft crusade is yielding dividends as a result of the single-minded commitment of the leadership of the ICPC and EFCC to doing what is right.
” We are also gratified about the renewed commitment of the judiciary and its courage in supporting the executive arm of government in its quest to fight corruption to a standstill.
“But, like many patriotic Nigerians, we know that there still remains a lot to be done and we urge the anti-graft agencies not to relent in their efforts to ensure permanent forfeitures of those assets as well as speedy prosecution of all pending high profile corruption cases.
” This is the only way to send clear signals to those who believe that nothing has changed, as well as other public officials with the ambition of dipping their hands into the public till”.
It reassured Nigerians that President Buhari would continue to display the political will necessary for a successful war against corruption in the country.