Saturday, May 18, 2024

Kaduna lawmakers launch corruption probe of El-Rufai over stolen billions from 2015 to 2023

The governor said his administration inherited a debt of $587 million, N85 billion, and 115 contractual liabilities from the El-Rufai administration.

• April 16, 2024
Kaduna State governor, Nasir el-rufai
Kaduna State governor, Nasir el-rufai [Photo credit: ICIR]

The Kaduna House of Assembly Tuesday initiated a corruption probe against former Governor Nasir El-unfair.

The lawmakers made a decision during a plenary.

According to the lawmakers, a fact-finding committee would investigate alleged corrupt activities related to financial dealings, loans, grants, and project implementations between 2015 and 2023.

The corruption probe comes amidst speculation of a rift between Mr El-rufia and his successor, Uba Sani. Mr Sani recently criticized the large debt he inherited from Mr El-rufia.

On March 30, the governor said his administration inherited a debt of $587 million, N85 billion, and 115 contractual liabilities from the El-Rufai administration.

“Despite the huge debt burden of $587 million, N85 billion, and 115 contractual liabilities sadly inherited from the previous administration, we remain resolute in steering Kaduna State towards progress and sustainable development,” Mr Sani said at a town hall meeting on Saturday.

The governor then praised himself and cabinet officials for coping judiciously with the depleted funds and not borrowing to finance the state’s expenditure like his predecessor.

“It gladdened my heart to inform you that, despite the huge inherited debt on the state, to date, we have not borrowed a single kobo,” the governor boasted.

His predecessor’s son, Bashir El-Rufai, however, punched holes in Mr Sani’s assertions, stressing that the governor himself “lobbied and approved” the loans while he served as a senator during his father’s governorship tenure.

“FYI: He was the senator from Kaduna who lobbied and approved the loans,” Mr El-Rufai (jnr) wrote on X Saturday afternoon.

The former governor’s son further questioned Mr Sani’s wisdom in “building a banquet hall for N7 billion” while, in the same breath, “lamenting about debt left by the previous administration.”

Mr El-Rufai (jnr) described Mr Sani as “wholly incompetent” who masked his deficiencies by heaping blame on past leaders.

According to him, the Kaduna governor surrounded himself with incompetent officials and spent much of his time sleeping in Abuja instead of the state he was elected to govern.

“These guys have realised that they are wholly incompetent, and the only way to mask the nonsense is to deflect,” Mr El-Rufai (jnr) said in a post on X. “From a governor that is always sleeping in Abuja to a litany of incompetent aides that were only rewarded for foolish political reasons.”

The former governor had thrown his back behind Mr Sani to clinch the ticket for the All Progressives Congress and eventually emerged as the winner of the hotly contested Kaduna gubernatorial polls.

However, the relationship appeared sour after Mr Sani kicked against the ministerial nomination of Jafaru Sani, whose name was submitted by his predecessor, Mr El-Rufai.

The incident caused Mr El-Rufai to tweet the lyrics of a Bob Marley song, “Who The Cap Fit”, suggesting he had been betrayed by close allies who dined with him only to backstab later.

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