The main opposition Peoples Democratic Party has described the ruling All Progressives Congress as “a haven for treasury looters” following the alleged connection of a former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, with the N1.8billion recovered by the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission in a property in Abuja.
In a statement released late Sunday and signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Debo Ologunagba, the PDP called on the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), to recall Buratai to face investigations over the allegation.
The statement titled, ‘N1.8bn: Recall Buratai for investigation, PDP tasks Buhari…insists APC is haven for treasury looters’, partly read, “The Peoples Democratic Party calls on President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately recall the former Chief of Army Staff (COAS) and Ambassador to Benin Republic, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai (rtd), to face investigations and clear his name over alleged connection with the N1.8bn recovered in a property in Abuja by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offenses Commission (ICPC).
“The PDP’s demand for the recall and investigation of Gen. Buratai is predicated on the earlier assertion by the National Security Adviser (NSA), Gen. Babagana Monguno, after the exit of Gen. Buratai as COAS that the $1bn drawn from the national coffers under the All Progressives Congress administration for the purchase of arms to fight terrorism in our country could not be traced.
“That assertion by the NSA heightened suspicion on allegations of barefaced looting of money meant to equip our security forces. Such corruption under the APC administration has led to the upsurge in unhindered terrorism attacks, mass killing of citizens and loss of many of our gallant fighters in the front in the last seven years.
“It is therefore of serious interest to Nigerians when reports that the ICPC discovered the sum of N1.8 billion in various currencies, expensive cars and jewelries secreted in a property in Abuja allegedly linked to the former COAS broke out.
“There are already apprehensions that the discovered money is part of the security fund that was criminally diverted. This is especially against the backdrop of the frenzy and spirited efforts by certain quarters linked to the APC to suppress investigation and free flow of information, politicise the matter and sweep it under the carpet.”
The PDP stated that the APC’s alleged refusal to prosecute those who had been involved in “massive corruption” in its rank was an approval of the looting of the nation’s territory by the ruling party.
The opposition party had also alleged that the APC planned to draw monies from the national treasury to fund the 2023 general election.
“Nigerians will recall that our Party has on several occasions alerted that the looting of our treasury is officially sanctioned & enabled by the APC administration with its refusal to prosecute those who were alleged & found to have been involved in massive corruption.
“It would also be recalled that the PDP drew attention to plans of the APC to create a slush fund account from monies fraudulently drawn from the national treasury to finance their plot to rig the 2023 general election.
“This is evidenced by the massive use of money by the APC to prosecute a vote-buying scheme in the recent Ekiti State Governorship election. The prevalence of vote-buying in that election by the APC was even acknowledged by the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Yakubu Mahmood, which prompted the INEC Chairman to demand for speedy trial of those arrested for vote-buying in the Ekiti State election.”
The PDP, therefore, slammed the administration of the ruling APC as being a haven for treasury looters, while alleging that the silence of the APC-led Federal Government to the alleged looting of N80 billion by the suspended Accountant General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris, was the handiwork of the “cabal at very high level of the APC administration.”
“The reports of massive looting by the APC leaders and their cronies in government Ministries, Departments and Agencies further confirms the APC administration as a haven for treasury looters.
“Moreover, the recently exposed looting of N80bn by the suspended Accountant General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris, which investigation has now gone cold is suspected to have been engineered by the cabal at very high level of the APC administration,” the PDP stated.