The President of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, Prof. Itse Sagay (SAN) has urged the Federal Government and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFFC) to take seriously the issue of wanted ex-chairman of the defunct Presidential Task Force on Pension Reforms, Abdulrasheed Maina, who has returned to Nigeria.
- Maina was dismissed in 2013 by the Federal Civil Service Commission following a recommendation by the Office of the Head of Service.
- He was accused of massive pension fraud scheme amounting to more than N100 billion.
- Maina sued the Senate, after the upper chamber issued an arrest warrant against him.
- Maina was dismissed by the Head of Service for allegedly absconding from duty and attempting to evade arrest and charged to court.
- Reports recently emerged that Maina has returned to the country, now works with the government and has been promoted.
What Sagay said:
- Maina embezzled money meant for pensioners who served Nigeria.
- His re-employment and promotion shows that he has an accessory.
Sagay said, “This man was accused of embezzling billions of naira meant for pensioners who had spent all their lives serving this country. One man took the money they should rely on in their declining years, subjecting them to misery and hopelessness.
“This is a moral and criminal issue. So, to hear that the man is in the country and somebody employed him means he is not the only criminal in the system. It means there is an accessory.
“Whoever was involved in employing him and then giving him promotion is an accessory after the fact to the crimes committed by this man if it is established that he is culpable. I don’t see why he escaped if he was not guilty.”
He added, “The EFCC should not just say they are aware; they should take action. The EFCC should now arrest him, interrogate him and if they can establish a case, prosecute him. They should also investigate all those involved in the reabsorbing and promotion of this man.
“If it established that they brought him back into the civil service despite knowledge of the man’s alleged crimes, they are also accessories after the fact and should also be arrested and prosecuted.”