Erstwhile Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Appropriation, Hon Abdulmumin Jibrin has been selected to head an adhoc committee to investigate the value of all funds recovered from foreign accounts operated by late military head of state, Gen. Sani Abacha from 1998 till date. Speaker of the House, Yakubu Dogara announced during yesterday’s plenary that Abdulmumin will chair the committee. Dogara’s decision signal a truce between himself, and Jibrin after a protracted acrimony over an alleged infarctions in the 2016 budget.
The House had in 2015 suspended Jibrin for 180 legislative days and barred him from holding any leadership position in the 8th Assembly. However, Dogara’s decision to appoint him in that capacity suggest a political realignment between the duo. The House last week resolved to set-up an adhoc committee to investigate the fund recovered so far, sources of these funds, how the funds were utilised. The committee is also expected to examine all agreements and memorandums of understanding entered into by the federal government and determine whether or not these agreements are binding under the constitution.
The member representing Yagba East / Yagba West / Mopa-muro federal constituency of Kogi state, Hon Karimi Sunday, had in a motion of urgent national importance, titled; ‘urgent need to stop the executive from expending the last trade of the Abacha loot or and recovered loot without parliamentary approval,’ urged the House to determine the detailed and how the funds were spent. He urged the House ensure that the sum of $322 million to be released by the government of Switzerland, should be distributed to the federating units in-line with the current revenue sharing formula.
Karimi also urged that government should come-up with a supplementary appropriation bill to earmark the funds due to it from the Abacha loots recovery for the completion of the Ajaokuta Steel Complex. According to Karimi, the Executive arm of government should immediately present to the National Assembly the accumulated release from the recovered loo and how the fund has been expended. But the member representing Kiru Bebeji federal constituency of Kano state, Abdulmumin Jibrin sponsored an amendment to the motion.
Jibrin noted that all the funds recovered from Abacha’s foreign account should be determined, and all agreement reviewed so as to enable the motion achieve its desired goal. According to Jibrin, the funds termed as Abacha loot has been in the new sine around 1998/1999 and the country cannot specifically mentioned how much has been recovered so far.