How Top Officials In Malami’s Ministry Embezzled N104m, Moved Cash In Bag
Information reaching Ibom Focus How Top Officials In Malami’s Ministry Embezzled N104m, Moved Cash In Bag
A petition to the Independent Corrupt Practice and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has called for a probe into over N104 million which is missing from the office of the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami.
The petition, started by the Integrity and Transparency Watch (ITW), a Nigerian non-profit organisation and society watchdog, urged the ICPC to investigate and prosecute the director of finance and account in the Ministry of Justice, Joshua Luka Kadmi who is in Grade Level 17 and one Abuh Danjuma who also works in the AGF’s office.
The petition, dated February 15, 2022, was addressed to the ICPC Chairman, Bolaji Owasanoye by Shaibu Sodangi, the National Coordinator and Head of ITW’s Investigation Department.
According to the petition obtained by SaharaReporters, the duo, within two months (November to December 2021), allegedly embezzled N104 million through the private account of Danjuma (UBA Account No: 2064800888 and Access Bank No: 0050341092).
Afterwards, the junior officer, Danjuma reportedly withdrew the money from his bank account and handed it over to Kadmi in a bag.
The ITW noted that the actions of the officers are in breach of the General Regulation Act, stressing that they expended government resources without due process and violated stimulated rules, particularly with reference to sections 12&19 of the corrupt practices and other related offences act, 2000 and punishable under relevance section of the same act.
The group further stated that both Kadmi and Abuh should be made to step aside to allow for a thorough investigation into the issue.
The statement reads: “Established in 2013, The Integrity and Transparency Watch (ITW) is a Nigerian nonprofit with a mission to promote transparency and accountability in the public and private sectors in supporting the effort in developing a Transparency Integrity Index for Federal Ministries, Departments, and Agencies in Nigeria.
“As an independent Civil Society Group and lead researchers, we had unravelled the scam following months of the group’s diligent research team investigation of the issue which became a national embarrassment, to ensure justice is done to the society which norms have been violated by the reckless and corruption driven habit of the director of finance and account in the ministry of Justice Mr Joshua Luka Kadmi of GL 17 and one Abuh Danjuma at GL 9.
“The integrity watch, an Economic and administration Watchdog for the society, we work to promote good governance and quality leadership at the strata of public service.
“We wish to express our displeasure over constant breach of General Regulation Act by leads of a government agency, reckless and fraudulent expending of our
common patrimony for personal enrichment.
“It is highly pitiable and equally worrisome to note that Director of Finance and Account Federal Ministry of Justice Mr. Joshua Kadmi and in connivance with Mr. Abuh Danjuma continues to expend government resources without due process and total disregard to financial law laid down by the government to guide her financial operations which actions continue to cast doubt on the current administration on whether the government is really ready to fight corruption in Nigeria if the Ministry that is supposed to uphold the law 100% are now seen breaching financial Regulation Act. It will mean a total loss of hope for the current administration to fight corruption.
“In the month of November to December 2021, the Director of Finance Mr. Joshua Luka Kadmi and Mr. Abuh Danjuma frittered away millions of naira through a private account of Abuh Danjuma a staff member of the Ministry of Justice, monies into Abuh Danjuma UBA Account No: 2064800888 and Access Bank No: 0050341092 to the sum of N104,842,800.00 (One Hundred and Four Million, Eight Hundred and Forty-Two Thousand, Eight Hundred Naira) repeatedly for the month November and December toward the end of the year where MDAs are asked to return the unspent fund to the government letter.
“The monies paid into a private account of Abuh Danjuma (UBA Account) which was withdrawn and handed over to Mr. Luka through a ‘Ghana-must-go’ bag on behalf of the Ministry of Justice breached financial regulation act 713 which stated that “personal money shall in no circumstance be paid into a government account, nor shall any public money be paid into a private account, an officer who pays public money into the private account is deemed to have done so with fraudulent intention; and also the Financial Circular Ref No: TRY/A2&B2/20090AGF/CAD/26/V dated 24th March 2009 states that, all accounting officers and officers controlling expenditure are to ensure that all local procurement of stores and services costing above N200,000.00 shall be made only through the award of contract.
“We request ICPC to investigate and prosecute Mr. Joshua Luka Kadmi and Abuh Danjuma in violation of section 12&19 of the corrupt practices and other related offences act, 2000 and punishable under relevance section of the same act.
“That Mr. Joshua and Abuh having contravened the financial act, corrupt practices and other related offences at section 105 of criminal code should as a matter of urgency step aside from the ministry immediately to give room for an unfettered investigation of the commission with compliance with the office of the Accountant General of Federation, return the sum of N104,842,800 into the government’s coffers pending the conclusion of the investigation into the financial crime.
“To this end, we request an immediate investigation into the rot in the ministry of justice on how Mr. Joshua Luka Kadmi and Mr. Abuh Danjuma’s fraudulent activity in the ministry of justice which is grave to the nation’s economy at this time of scarcer resources.
“Attached documents obtained with help of freedom of Information ACT through watchdog members in CBN, Federal Ministry of Finance and Accountant General of Federation office justifies our demand for immediate action on fraudulent staff in Attorney General of Federation office.”
According to the ITW, the payment made to Danjuma’s accounts are as follows: on December 1, 2021, N4,710,000.00 was reportedly paid to Danjuma’s UBA and Access Bank accounts as “payment for DTA Air Ticket & Local Running for Retreat & the course & delay/backing of criminal cases in Nig. Criminal Justice”.
Two days later, he received the sum of N4,600,000 being payment of ”DTA Air Ticket and local running to 11 officers to Yola for national NEEDS assessment collation and review across the states Justice in Nig. On NEEDS for Virtual and acceleration hearing scheduled for 15th – 20th December 2021″.
Another N4,500,000 payment was received the same day as payment of ”DTA Air ticket for 15 Officers for retreat on cause and delay/backlog of criminal justice administration schedule for 13th – 18th December 2021.
On the same day, Danjuma also received another N4,500,000 as “payment of DTA Air Ticket and local running to 11 officers to Borno for National needs assessment collation and review across the states justice in Nigeria on needs for virtual and acceleration hearing schedule for 16th – 21st Dec. 2021”.
N4.3 million was paid into Danjuma’s account as payment for the assessment collation and review across the states justice sector institutions in Nigeria. Another N4,500,000 payment was made “for the assessment collation and review across the states on the need for virtual and acceleration hearing of high profile cases in Sokoto.”
“On December 4, the sum of N4,990,000 was sent to Danjuma “being payment for National NEEDS assessment collation and review across the states justice sector institution in Nigeria Schedule for Oyo State.”
“Two days after this, the officer received the sum of N4,970,000 “being payment for activities of inter-ministerial committee for disposal of FGN forfeited asset stated for 13th – 18th 2021 in Sokoto.”
“Subsequently, the sum of N4,710,000 was sent to Danjuma as “payment for a retreat on causes and delay/ backlog of criminal cases in Nigeria Criminal Justice administration in Ondo State.” Another N4,970,000 was sent to Danjuma’s two bank accounts “being payment for activities of Inter-ministerial committee for disposal asset stated for 13th – 18th, 2021 Maiduguri.”
“Still, on December 6, N4,900,000 was sent to Danjuma, “being payment for retreat on causes and delay/ tracking of criminal justice administration in Oyo State.
Meanwhile, on November 6, N4,500,000 was sent for, “activities of the inter-ministerial committee for the disposal of FGN forfeited assets stated for 22nd – 27th November 2021.”
On the same day, N4,000,000 was sent “being payment for 8th – 13th Nov. NEEDS assessment advocacy visit across the states justice sector in Yobe.”
On December 10, a payment of N4,182,800 was made for miscellaneous /contingency purposes to further engage stakeholders and secure buy-in and inputs of the public in Ekiti State. Another N4,200,000 was sent for policy review towards continuous Audit of inmates and Decongestion of correctional facilities across the country North East Gombe State.
“On November 16, N4.8 million was sent as ”payment for sensitisation of stakeholders on the role and responsibility of legal aid council in Act System in SW/NC Zone held in Kano. On the same day, N4,500,000 was sent to the officer’s account as “payment for sensitisation of stakeholders on the role and responsibility of legal aid council in Act System in NE/NW Zone held in Borno State.”
Another N4,500,000 was disbursed “being payment for sensitisation of stakeholders on the role and responsibility of legal aid council in Act System in SE/SS Zone held in Enugu ”. The same amount was sent to Danjuma’s accounts on the same day as the payment for sensitization of stakeholders on the role and responsibility of legal aid council in Act System in NE/NW Zone held in Lagos State.
On November 17, Danjuma received N4,400,000 payment for “national and review across the state justice sector institution in Nigeria. On need for virtual and accelerated hearing of high profile cases.”
Three days later, N4.4 million was sent to Danjuma as “payment for national needs assessment collation and review across state justice sector institution in Nigeria on the need for virtual and accelerated hearing of high profile cases.”
On November 22, Danjuma received another N4,710,000 “being payment to organize a retreat on the assessment of the cause for delays and backlog of criminal cases in Nigeria’s criminal justice administration in Kano.”