by Azeez Adeniyi
The Southern Kaduna Coalition of Professionals (SKCOP) has decried the detention of a former Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Andrew Yakubu.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had recovered $9.8 million and another £74,000 from a building belonging to Yakubu in Sabo Tasha area of Kaduna state.
Yakubu had been detained after admitting ownership of the money but claimed they were gifts from unnamed persons.
General Secretary of the group, Sagamu Jaspar in a statement on Thursday said there was no law forbidding anyone from keeping their earnings at home.
Jaspar alleged that some persons were after their “illustrious son”.
“We are waiting to see if a court of law can establish that the said amount found in his home is a proceed of crime, or whether there is indeed a law that forbids anyone from keeping his earnings at home,” Jaspar said.
“We suspect that the deliberate negative publicity the EFCC is generating over his arrest and its failure to release him from their detention after meeting his bail conditions, is more vindictive and political than fighting corruption.
“We condemn the desperate attempts to rubbish Andy Yakubu, (the Iyan of Atyap Chiefdom) by those who think that a man from southern Kaduna has no business becoming the GMD of NNPC started right when he was in office.”
The group said some people were out to tarnish the reputation of the “only man from the middle belt” to have led the oil firm.
The group also said after Sanusi Lamido claimed $20 billion was unremitted, a committee led by Andrew Yakubu had cleared the NNPC of the accusations.
“In 2014, the then CBN governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, raised a bogus alarm that under the watch of Andy Yakubu, $48.9 billion had gone missing at the NNPC. When pressed further, he said it was actually $20 billion. The senate took the matter very serious and instituted its own probe into the clearly silly allegation,” the group said.
“An audit firm of global repute, PriceWaterHouseCoopers was brought in by the federal government. After a forensic investigation, the firm said no such monies were ever missing.
“Still bent on disgracing the only person from the middle belt to ever occupy that position after rising from the ranks, Andy Yakubu was in UK in June last year, when the EFCC invited him. With his conscience clean and clear he arrived Nigeria just for the EFCC to clamp him in detention over an alleged criminality in an NNPC subsidiary, NPDC after Yakubu has left office.”