NALYSIS: 2019: PDP presidential aspirants whose ambitions are dogged by corruption allegations

Last week, I in my humble and bias opinion performed an e-screening for PDP Aspirant, but was ignored by many. However, my selection criteria attracted happen to be a major issue that a Premium Times writer took his time to address the issue, backing it with Nigeria Constitution.

For the TL;DR crew like me, I will just outline the PDP presidential aspirants whose ambitions are dogged by corruption allegations here, you can read more in the source.

Atiku Abubakar
On July 21, Mr Abubakar declared his bid to contest on the ticket of the PDP in Yola, the state capital. Mr Abubakar’s ambition is dogged by allegations of corruption while he was in office as vice president. In 2006, the Senate ad hoc committee headed by Victor Ndoma-Egba investigated and indicted him and his former principal, Olusegun Obasanjo, of mismanagement of funds belonging to the Petroleum Training Development Fund (PTDF).

Bukola Saraki
Mr Saraki was governor of Kwara State between 2003 and 2011. In 2011, he was elected into the senate and has since been there. Early in the life of the current federal administration in which he is number three in the hierarchy, Mr Saraki was charged by the Code of Conduct Tribunal. He faced a 13-count charge bordering on corruption and false assets declaration. After about three years of tortuous judicial journey, Mr Saraki was cleared of all the allegations by the Supreme Court on July 6.

While the CCB case lasted, findings by PREMIUM TIMES and the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (Paradise Papers), in 2017, indicated that Mr. Saraki sat on the board of an offshore entity while he was governor and later member of the Nigerian Senate in violation of Nigeria’s code of conduct law.

Recently, the Nigeria Police linked the senate president with armed robbery in Offa, Kwara State, that led to the death of over 30 persons. The police said some of the arrested suspects in the April Offa robbery confessed that Mr Saraki and Kwara State Governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed, were their sponsors.

David Mark
He was senate president from 2007 to 2015 on the ticket of the PDP. Mr Mark, who represents Benue South, is the longest serving senator in Nigeria having been first elected into the chamber in 1999. The former senate president was first questioned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in December 2017 and again in January 2018 over receipt of illegal funds in the days before the 2015 elections.

He was grilled over alleged payment of N2 billion into the National Assembly account by the PDP for distribution to senators. Mr Mark has since denied receiving such fund. PREMIUM TIMES also reported that Mr Mark had links with eight offshore companies in British Virgin Island as shown by the Panama Papers.

…..In the documents, Mr. Mark was repeatedly marked as a politically exposed person, and at a point the former senate president had to send documents, across to Mossack Fonseca to prove that he was clean.

Sule Lamido
Mr Lamido is the immediate past governor of Jigawa State, which he governed between 2007 and 2015. He had been foreign affairs minister between 1999 and 2007. In July 2015, Mr. Lamido and his sons were arraigned by the EFCC on allegations of money laundering, amongst other charges.
A 28-count charge bordering on a number of alleged breach of trust was slammed on Mr Lamido, Aminu Sule Lamido, Mustapha Sule Lamido and one Aminu Wada Abubakar, in a Kano High Court. They allegedly received N1.35 billion kickback from a government contractor. The money was allegedly paid into accounts controlled by the governor and his sons.

To be cont.

Re: 2019: PDP Presidential Aspirants With Corruption Allegations – Premium Times by xpmode(m): 11:26am
Attahiru Bafarawa
Mr Bafarawa was the governor of Sokoto State from 1999 to 2007 on the ticket of the defunct ANPP. He ran for president on DPP platform in 2007 but lost. He joined the PDP in 2014. He was a member of the House of Representatives in the Second Republic. In 2015, Mr Bafarawa, his son, Sagir, a former National Security Adviser (NSA), Sambo Dasuki, and others were arraigned in court for alleged money laundering and criminal breach of trust.

They were accused of diversion, misappropriation and breach of public trust in respect of N19.4 billion. Mr Bafarawa’s son, Sagir, allegedly acting as front for his father, received N4.6 billion from the NSA’s office. They were arraigned on 22-count charge before Justice Peter Affem of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High court. When the charges were read to them, all the accused persons denied the charges one after the other. Earlier in 2009, the EFFC had preferred N15 billion corruption charge against the former Sokoto governor.

However, the recent case involving the former NSA is still ongoing.

He is the immediate past governor of Plateau State and a serving senator representing Plateau North. Mr Jang, a retired air commodore, was military governor of Benue and the old Gongola States between 1985 and 1987. Mr Jang, 74, is being prosecuted by the EFCC for alleged corruption. He and a former cashier in the Office of the Secretary to the State Government, Yusuf Pam, were fingered in the diversion of N6.3 billion belonging to the Plateau State Government.

In May, the former governor was incarcerated and later granted bail by the Plateau State High Court after one week in detention. Mr Jang had earlier dragged the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, to court for including his name in a controversial looters’ list published by the federal government.

According to the list, the former governor stole N12 billion from the state’s treasury while in office.

You may Wonder What Does Nigeria Constitution says

Section 137 (1) (d) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) says, a person shall not be qualified for election to the office of the President if “he is under a sentence of death imposed by any competent court of law or tribunal in Nigeria or a sentence of imprisonment or fine for any offence involving dishonesty or fraud (by whatever name called) or for any other offence, imposed on him by such a court or tribunal, or

e) within a period of less than ten years before the date of the election to the office of the President has been convicted and sentence for an offence involving dishonesty or he has been found guilty of the contravention of the of the Code of Conduct;….

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