File photo: Abdulrasheed Maina
Senator Shehu Sani on Tuesday attributed the recall of a former Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Pension Reforms, Abdulrasheed Maina, to the disjointed state of government in the country.
Senator Sani, who represents Kaduna Central senatorial district, believes Maina’s reinstatement into the Federal Civil Service has left Nigerians to question how the Federal Government intends to achieve the objectives of its anti-corruption war.
“What is clear in the whole of these is the very fact that things have not actually changed very much in the very sense that if a man who has an issue to settle with morality, with sanity could at these very times be re-invited or recalled, then moral issues certainly were raised and is also a revelation of the discord and the disjointed state of government as it is now,” he said during his appearance on Channels Television’s Politics Today.
The development, according to him, also reveals “the very fact that some persons are behind the scene wielding very strong powers to which their wielding of power is directly in contradiction with what the President stands for, believes in, and advertises as the moral principles of his government.”
Maina was declared wanted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for his alleged involvement in the mismanagement of about N2 billion pension fund. He had reportedly disappeared from public glare only to resurface in October 2017 and take charge as an acting director in the Ministry of Interior.
Amid various resistance to the development from Nigerians, President Muhammadu Buhari ordered Maina’s immediate dismissal and demanded a full report of the circumstances of his recall.
Corruption, A Cat With Nine Lives
Senator Sani, however, said that a lot needed to be done by the government in order to fulfil its promises to Nigerians, especially in the fight against corruption.
File Photo: Shehu Sani
He said, “It is of concern today that yesterday, like I’ve said in my tweets – corruption was being hoisted under an umbrella and today is being swept under the carpet in the very sense that many things have not changed despite the promise of change.
“It is worrying for the fact that there are so many expectations, so many hopes and opportunities for us to cleanse the system; it is very clear that corruption is becoming a cat with nine lives”.
The lawmaker said an order was raised by one of his colleagues during Tuesday’s plenary where the attention of the Senate was brought to the issue of Maina and a decision was taken to set up an ad hoc committee.
Despite the order issued by President Buhari to investigate the recall, Sani stressed the need for Nigerians to understand the separate responsibilities of the executive and legislative arms of government.
Buhari’s Decision On Maina’s Recall
He explained that the Senate intends to investigate the circumstances on how Maina returned to the country and those who were responsible for his recall.
The senator added that the Upper Chamber would also investigate how he was reinstated without the knowledge of the President, referring to the separate reports from the Senate and the Presidency on the corruption allegations in the North East.
“By having two reports, it would be impossible for anyone who will try to suppress it (the investigation). The very fact that the President now has taken a stand by reversing the recall is a clear indication that either what was done was done without his knowledge of it was done with his knowledge but he now realised that it was wrong.
“But the fact as it is on the ground now is that the Senate will fully investigate and will come out with its report. What will not happen will be a situation whereby reports will be hidden from the public and naturally if the parliament is investigating issues, reports are usually made public.
“We are serious about this and Nigerians will come to know the truth of how Maina came back and those who are responsible; we would not allow it to be a family affair and that’s why the Senate has to investigate,” he said.