The Executive Chairman of the Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders, CACOL, Mr. Debo Adeniran has brought to the fore a seemingly unacknowledged dimension to the story of the Chief Army Staff, COAS, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai’s alleged corruption crimes related to his owning two palatial mansions in Dubai.
This is sequel to calls from eminent and respected groups and individuals for either the immediate resignation or sack of the embattled COAS. The COAS is currently in the eye of the storm following the revelation that he owns two properties in Dubai, even though both the COAS and the CCB has affirmed that Buratai declared the assets when he passed through the asset declaration processes on two occasions.
The COAS, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, has however failed to resign from his position even with the strident calls for his resignation or that he should he should be sacked by President Muhammadu Buhari over the Dubai assets valued at about $1.5m.
Mr. Debo Adeniran posited that the CCB has explanation to give over why the assets were purportedly declared, but the agency failed to ascertain the value of the properties vis-à-vis the legitimate and provable earnings of the COAS.
According to the anti-corruption Crusader, “the truth is that, we need to be circumspect in approaching the Buratai case, for it is the duty of the CCB to ascertain the value of all assets declared by public official before it, and bring to fore if discrepancies exist in the declarations. That is how other agencies like EFFC can swing into action to investigate if financial or economic crimes are being violated.”
“The reason why the verification of the value of the assets was not carried out by the CCB is suspicious and makes it crucial for the CCB to clear the air, unless, perhaps the agency was in cohorts with the COAS if the allegations against the him are proved to be valid.” He added
Furthermore, he said “this development is also bringing to the fore once again, the imperative of making assets declarations by all public officials with the CCB public for purpose of transparency and public scrutiny so as to engender public trust in governance. There is absolutely no reason for public officials to hide their assets if they got them through hard work or other legitimate means. One of the major reasons the CCB was created in the first place was for the verification of assets declared by public officials so as to nip the tendency to make false assets declaration in the bud.”
However, Adeniran called on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC not to tarry any longer before swinging into action over the Buratai-Gate. “With benefit of the information on ground, the EFCC must commence investigations into all angles to the case as the Commission is empowered in Section 7 of its Act. How an army General managed to save $1.5m has to be explained to Nigerians. Thus the EFCC needs to thoroughly carry out its investigations, including the verification of the value of the assets declared by the COAS. Should any crime be found to have been committed by the COAS, then he should be tried and if found guilty, he must resign and face the sanctions of his crime. The same goes for the CCB or any of its officials found have connived in any way.” He concluded.
Media Coordinator, CACOL
11 June 2016
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