by Akan Ido
Abdulrasheed Maina, the Pension Reform Task Team (PRTT) Chairman who was accused of embezzling pension funds has reportedly left the country to escape prosecution by law enforcement agencies.
Maina apparently sensed a clampdown following the Senate’s issue of an arrest warrant against him and the decision of the Presidency to punish him for leaving hos duty post without following due procedure.
Sources close to Maina say his security details were partially withdrawn which signified that he would have to appear before the Senate or relevant law enforcement agencies to defend himself against allegations of embezzlement levelled against him.
A Vanguard Newspapers source said, “I can tell you that Maina is not in the country as we speak. He knows very well that the game is up and there is no point for him to continue a fight he can hardly win convincingly.”
Maina was said to have misappropriated billions of pension funds, which he claimed to have recovered from pension “thieves”.
When summoned to face the Senate committee probing pension funds management, Maina dodged and later later instituted a N1.5 bn case against the Senate and the Inspector General of Police, who had declared him wanted following a warrant of arrest issued by the Senate President, David Mark.
Hassan Salihu, Maina’s media aide told the newsmen that he is unaware of his boss’ whereabouts neither can he explain the withdrawal of security details usually surrounding him.
While speaking to newsmen yesterday,the police spokesman, Frank Mba said Maina’s warrant of arrest still stands and the police will do all it can to get a hold of him so as to answer to allegations of embezzlement levelled against him.
Mba said,”All I know is that the warrant for Maina’s arrest is still in force and the Nigerian Police force has declared him wanted. And until we arrest him, he remains a wanted man by the police”.
“I have no information to the effect that Alhaji Abdurasheed Maina is out of this country or has sneaked to Saudi Arabia. However, as long as the warrant issued against him remains in force, the Nigerian Police will do everything within legal and legitimate means available to us, to seek him out, arrest him and hand him over to the Senate as mandated in that warrant,” he stated.