Police Defends Raid Of Goje’s Home

The Police Force Public Relations Officer, Moshood Jimoh has said that the search warrant executed at Senator Danjuma Goje’s residence has nothing to do with the 2017 budget.

He stated that the police did not go to his residence to search for the budget and no document was sighted.

“We didn’t go out there to search for the budget, no budget document was sighted and no budget document was removed”.

Speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, he revealed that the search was done due to credible information gathered that “stolen funds and other incriminating items were about to be moved from the premises and that was why the police made the move”.

The Police PRO also noted that all documents collected were fully signed for by the aides to the former governor, after the search was over.

”In fulfillment of the procedure of the law, three of the Senator’s relatives witnessed the search and endorsed their signature at the back of the search warrant.

The House of Representatives had resolved to summon the Inspector General of Police over the raid on the home of Senator Danjuma Goje.

The House reached the resolution after a debate on a motion raised by a lawmaker, calling on it to check the excesses of security agents.

The Senate on the other hand, expressed displeasure over the raid which according to the Chairman Senate Committee on Appropriation, Senator Danjuma Goje, had contributed to the delay in the passage of the 2017 budget.

He said policemen who raided his house five days ago, carted away documents pertaining to the budget.

“They took my laptop and to make matters worse, they took 18 files from my office.”

Senate President, Bukola Saraki, expressed concern that five days after the raid of the home of Senator Danjuma Goje, the Police is yet to inform the Senator why his home was raided and documents were seized.

He, however, stated that the Police should take the responsibility in accepting its wrong doing.

“Informally, the Chairman of the Police committee told me this morning that the police are saying that it is something to do with whistle blower. If it is to do with whistle blower and the whistle blower misled them, for a matter that has come out publicly to embarrass a Senator, I think the Police owes it not only to him but also to members of the public to come out and accept responsibility.”

Reps, Senate Summon IGP Over Invasion Of Goje’s Home

The House of Representatives has resolved to summon the Inspector General of Police over the raid on the home of Senator Danjuma Goje.

The House reached the resolution after a debate on a motion raised by a lawmaker, calling on it to check the excesses of security agents.

The Senate on the other hand, expressed displeasure over the raid which according to the Chairman Senate Committee on Appropriation, Senator Danjuma Goje, had contributed to the delay in the passage of the 2017 budget.

He said policemen who raided his house five days ago, carted away documents pertaining to the budget.

“They took my laptop and to make matters worse, they took 18 files from my office.”

Senate President, Bukola Saraki, expressed concern that five days after the raid of the home of Senator Danjuma Goje, the Police is yet to inform the Senator why his home was raided and documents were seized.

He, however, stated that the Police should take the responsibility in accepting its wrong doing.

“Informally, the Chairman of the Police committee told me this morning that the police are saying that it is something to do with whistle blower. If it is to do with whistle blower and the whistle blower misled them, for a matter that has come out publicly to embarrass a Senator, I think the Police owes it not only to him but also to members of the public to come out and accept responsibility.”

2016 Budget: Goje, Jibrin Appeal To Colleagues For Resolution

Abdulmumin JibrinThe two chairmen of committees on appropriation in the National Assembly have appealed to their colleagues to drop the debate about who is right or wrong in the 2016 budget controversy as it does not advance the interest of Nigerians.

In a joint statement on Sunday, Senator Danjuma Goje and Hon. Abdulmumin Jibrin stated that they have had enough of controversies over the 2016 budget and are prepared to do the needful to resolve the differences.

They appealed to their colleagues to cooperate with the executive and transmit the details of the budget and the inputs received from the standing committees of both the Senate and the House of Representatives.

“We call on our colleagues in the National Assembly to accede to the request byDanjuma Goje his Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari to have a second look at the details and make the necessary adjustments so that he can assent.

“This, in our opinion, should not go beyond this week,” they said.

They also described the allegations levelled against them as unfounded but noted that what is important is to resolve the impasse around the budget and get it assented to so that its implementation can begin in the interest of all Nigerians.

Full statement by Senator Danjuma Goje and Hon. Abdulmumin Jibrin below:

 

2016 Budget: A Time for Statesmanship

Following the transmission on of the 2016 appropriation bill and details passed by the National Assembly, there have been all manner of misinformation, misrepresentations and innuendos about the roles played by the Joint Committees on Appropriation in the course of passing the budget.

Even though most of the allegations, especially those specifically levelled against the two of us, as chairmen of the committee, are unfounded, we intend to respond to them at the appropriate time. For now, what we consider important is to resolve the impasse around the budget and get it assented to so that its implementation can begin in the interest of all Nigerians.

However, we must put it on record that the details aggregated and transmitted to the executive are largely the inputs we received from the standing committees of both the Senate and the House of Representatives.

Given the foregoing, and all factors considered, we hereby state that we have had enough controversy over the 2016 budget. What is needful right now is a resolution of the differences and to that end, we call on our colleagues in the National Assembly to accede to the request by  His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari to have a second look at the details and make the necessary adjustments so that he can assent.

This, in our opinion, should not go beyond this week.

To the extent that there are already ongoing consultations, a debate about who is right or wrong is unhelpful in the circumstance; and in any case, does not advance the cause of our country men and women whose interest we have been elected to serve.

Nevertheless, we must commend President Muhammadu Buhari, Senate President Bukola Saraki, Speaker Yakubu Dogara and the entire members of the National Assembly, members of the federal executive council, the Minister of Budget and the budget team for their cooperation even as we assure all Nigerians that we will do everything to protect and defend their interest, at all times.

Senator Danjuma Goje                     Hon. Abdulmumin Jibrin

Counter-Terrorism: DSS Arrests Another Suspect And Impostors

DSS arrests terrorism suspectThe Department of State Services (DSS) has arrested Bello Danhajiya, a close associate of a purported founding member of Boko Haram, Khalid Al-Barnawi.

The arrest was made days after the DSS reported the arrest of Al-Barnawi known for his leadership and notoriety in terrorism activities in Nigeria.

A statement by a spokesman for the DSS, Garba Abdullahi, said the Danhajiya is a Fulani from Zamfara State.

According to the anti-crime agency, preliminary investigations disclosed his involvement in gun-running, cattle rustling and other nefarious criminal activities principally on the directives of his commander, Al-Barnawi.

Mr Abdullahi said efforts were being made to conclude the investigations and commence prosecution in line with the law.

In another development, the DSS also arrested some suspects involved in impersonation of government officials to defraud people.

Aminu Ado also known as Yusha’u Muhammed Yerima Adam, David Ali Michika, Umar Hamza, James Malu Akune and Kazeem Kayode Usman were nabbed at different locations in Nigeria.

Ado was arrested on March 24 at Keffi Nasarawa State and the statement by the DSS said he confessed to defrauding a retired Lt. General, T.Y. Danjuma, of one million Naira in 2015 and wife of Akwa Ibom State Governor of 300,000 Naira in collaboration with one Hajia Aisha who impersonated the wife of former Gombe State Governor, Danjuma Goje.

Michika, 43, from Jimeta, Adamawa State but resides at Ungogo Local Government Area of Kano State was arrested in Kano for impersonating the Secretary to the Government of The Federation.

The DSS said Michika had called several high ranking government officials soliciting for funds to settle spiritualists for prayers rendered for the success of the All Progressives Congress in the 2015 general election and for peace in the nation.

According to the agency, Hamza, 39, is a school teacher from Tarauni Local Government Area of Kano State, who was recruited by Michika to act as the spiritualist based in Niger Republic to be paid for the service rendered.

The DSS stated that Akune, 40, from Tarka Local Government Area of Benue State claimed he was a contractor with business interests in China and USA.

“He paraded himself as the brother to the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs and defrauded people on false promises of contracts. He equally arranged to get contract for companies from the victim Support Committee for the North-East, headed by T.Y. Danjuma,” the DSS statement further read.

Another suspect, Usman, was arrested in Lagos on April 12. He has been on the trail of security agencies for the impersonation of the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari.

The DSS said the suspects opened and operated bank accounts through which they collected various sums of money from their victims.

It further decried what it called the haste with which banks open accounts for prospective customers without ascertaining their genuine personal details and urged the public to take note of the trend and report any suspicion persons to appropriate security agencies.

NASS To Submit 2016 Budget Details To President Buhari       

budgetThe coast now seems clear for the President to assent to the 2016 budget.

This is because the National Assembly is ready to transmit the final document to President Muhammadu Buhari having concluded work on the figures.

In a statement jointly signed by the chairmen of the appropriation committees of the Senate and House of Representatives, Danjuma Goje and Abdulmumin Jibrin, the committees thanked Nigerians for their patience and understanding.

The chairmen said it took their committees extra weeks to get the details ready so they could correct all the inconsistencies, errors, omissions and padding in the document submitted to them in December 2015.

The National Assembly has now presented the much awaited details of the 2016 budget to its Clerk, Mr Salisu Maikasuwa for onward transmission to President Muhammadu Buhari for his assent.

President Buhari had temporarily withheld assent to the Bill, saying he would not sign it into law until the National Assembly makes the details of allocations to federal ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) available for his scrutiny.

 

2016 Budget Passage Not Possible In February – NASS

2016 BudgetThe National Assembly says its proposed date of February 25 for the passage of the 2016 budget is not feasible.

Addressing a news conference in Abuja, the chairmen of the Senate and House of Representatives committees on Appropriation, Senator Danjuma Goje and Representative Abdulmumin Jibrin said the February 25 target for the passage of the 2016 budget is no longer realistic.

The two lawmakers said that the National Assembly observed during the ongoing budget defence that government ministries have padded their budgets and because of this, lawmakers require more time to thoroughly work on the budget.

In the last two weeks, government ministries, departments and agencies have been visiting the National Assembly to defend their 2016 budget proposals.

But one common trend in almost all the budget defence sessions is that the agencies are complaining of insufficient funds appropriated to them and are asking for more money.

At a budget defence session on Tuesday, the Customs Comptroller General and the Minister of Finance got into an argument over what he said is the poor remuneration for Customs officials.

The Customs CG is also asking for more money for his personnel in the 2016 budget.

Issues such as these, which have been playing out in the budget defence sessions, have led the National Assembly to postpone the date which it set for the passage of the 2016 budget.

The Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Appropriation said that lawmakers also observed complaints from different quarters arising from the imbalance from the capital allocation.

The National Assembly has however not come out with a new date when the 2016 budget would be passed.

Senator Queries Use Of Military Training Aircraft By Politicians

A Senator, Olubunmi Adetumbi (ACN Ekiti) on Tuesday condemned the use of a military training helicopter by civilians during the burial of the father of a presidential adviser, Oronto Douglas.

Speaking during a debate on the urgent need to investigate the recent helicopter crash in Bayelsa, Senator Adetumbi said the death of the former Kaduna State Governor, Patrick Yakowa, former National Security Adviser Andrew Azazi and others was as a result of the failure of the system to address the issue of corruption.

According to him, the crashed helicopter is called a military training helicopter, but it is obviously not being used for military training on that day.

He said that pertinent questions, such as who authorised the use of the helicopter for civilian purposes must be asked and answers given.
“Who gave the order for the chopper to be used? What is the purpose of private charter helicopter? Why was a private chopper not hired? Is it what the Navy appropriation is being used for?” Senator Adetumbi asked.

He called on the National Assembly to do more than paying tribute to the deceased and observing one minute silence in their honour, but to take action to forestall future occurrences.

Other lawmakers who contributed to the debate condemned what they described as the resurgence of air mishaps in the country calling on the government to publish all previous reports of investigative panels into air crashes in the Nigeria.

Chris Anyanwu (APGA – Imo) said that in 2007 and 2011, there had been two crashes of similar Augusta helicopters owned by the navy. She expressed concerns over the seeming recurrence of air mishaps not just in civil aviation, but also in the Nigerian Military in spite of public outcry.

“Between March and October 2011, there were three reported cases of air mishaps by the Air force at different locations in the country and the causes of these crashes remain unknown. On March 21, 2011, one F7-NI fighter jet belonging to the Nigerian Air Force that was on a routine training programme crashed in Kano, killing the flight instructor.

“The fighter jet, which was reported to have come from Makurdi for a two week training exercise was delivered to the Air force by the manufacturers in China only a few days before the incident,” she said.

According to her, it is worrisome that the resurgence of air mishaps in the country is suggestive of a deep seated systems problem which must be unearthed and resolved.

Contributing to the debate, Heineken Lokpobiri (PDP-Bayelsa) urged the committee to ensure that its investigation was devoid of bias and should not be politicised.

“We should use this crash to stop others from occurring because this has become embarrassing, so the committee’s investigation must be total,’’ he said.

Danjuma Goje (PDP-Gombe) also advised the committee to make the investigation open and transparent. Goje said he was in support of the position of the Governors Forum that foreign experts should be involved in the investigation.

Ganiyu Solomon (ACN Lagos) also said that there had been several crashes and investigations followed, but the reports had never seen the light of the day.

He was of the view that the Senate committees on Navy, Air force and Aviation mandated to investigate the frequency of these mishaps should go as far as visiting the manufacturers of these planes to ascertain their air worthiness.

He expressed concerns that if military planes were crashing frequently, it was an indication that the military was not prepared for military action should the need arise.

The Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, who presided over the plenary said that more than 50,000 Nigerians had died in the last two years since the ugly trend of terrorism reared its head.

He however, called on the regulatory agencies in the aviation sector to ensure the airworthiness of every plane that took off and landed in the country.

The deputy senate president also noted the need for the Senate to buckle up and tackle the problem once and for all.

The Senate set up two committees to pay condolence visits to all the victims of the air crash and observed a minute silence in their honour.

Court insists ex-governor, Danjuma Goje has a case of fraud to answer

Danjuman Goje in the dockA Federal High Court in Gombe on Tuesday refused to quash charges of financial impropriety levelled against the former governor of Gombe state, Danjuma Goje by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

The court also fixed May 8, 2012 for the trial of the former governor who is currently a Senator in the National Assembly over an alleged fraud of N52 billion.

Mr Goje is facing an 18 count of conspiracy and money laundering along with Aliyu El-Nafarty (former Chairman, Gombe State Universal Basic Education Board), Sambo Mohammed Tumu (the ex- governor’s cousin and food supplier to Government House) and S.M. Dakoro, a businessman.

They were said to have conspired to defraud the state of about N25 billion which represented proceeds of illegal acts, contrary to and punishable under Sections 15, 16, 17, 18 and 19 of the Money Laundering (Prohibition Act) 2011 as amended.

At the last sitting last December 9, the lawyer to the defendants, Adeniyi Akintola had argued that his clients had no case to answer, adding that the former governor, for instance, was given executive powers by the constitution to act executively, by fiat, even in the award of contracts or appropriation of funds without reporting to anybody.

Mr Akintola further said that the charge was based on anonymous but fictitious petitions which he referred to as ‘’beer parlour gossip.’’

However, the prosecuting counsel and lawyer to the EFCC, Wahab Shittu, urged the court to disregard the submissions by the defence counsel contending that the prosecution had enough evidence to prove its case against the accused persons.