Bauchi Gov, Bala Mohammed goes after predecessors, sets up recovery panel

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The Bauchi State Governor, Sen. Bala Mohammed Abdulkadir has approved the setting up of a 17-member Committee headed by a former Senator representing Bauchi Central, Isa Hamma Misau, with a mandate to recover every alleged looted funds and government property by previous administrations in the state.

A press release signed and issued by the spokesperson of the Governor, Ladan Salihu, disclosed that the committee is to employ all legal means possible to also recover all monies found to have been fraudulently overcharged and paid to any contractor handling any contract awarded by the state government.

The committee is also to consult with ministries, departments and agencies of the government to ascertain and appraise all cases where government’s developed landed properties were disposed of between May 2007 to May 2019 with a view to determining the legality or otherwise of the transactions that culminated into the disposal of the assets and recovering them for government.

Another term of reference for the committee as contained in the release is to consider and review all land allocations carried out by the previous administrations from May 2007 to May 2019 without following the process of law as enshrined in the Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) and the Land Use Act of 1978.

The Committee is also to liaise with the Attorney General of the State to prosecute all manner of persons as may be found culpable in committing offences relating to misappropriation of public funds and or criminal acquisition or disposal of government landed properties, before appropriate court of law.

It is also to identify moveable and immovable assets in possession of any person found to be culpable in the misappropriation of state government’s property and or funds and forward them to prosecutors assigned by the State Attorney General for the purpose of obtaining court orders of forfeiture of the assets pending the determination of the criminal trials.

Newsmen reports that other members of the Committee are: Umar Barau Ningi, Brig Gen Markus Yake (rtd), Group Capt Tijjani Baba Gamawa, Alh Musa Gora, CP Hamisu Makama (rtd), ACP Musa Konkyiel (rtd) and Mal Musa Share.

The Committee also has as members: Alh Bibi Dogo, Kamel Isah, Harsanu Guyaba, Barr Lawal Husseini Ibrahim, Alh Sani Shehu (Sanin Malam), Arc Baba Mohammed Dadi, Hon Maryam Garba Bagel, Professor Sylvester Shigyil (SAN) who is to serve as the SECRETARY while Barr Mukhtar Abubakar Usman is to serve as the Assistant Secretary of the Committee which has three months within which to complete its assignment and submit reports to the Governor.

It will be recalled that barely few weeks to the end of the immediate past administration, the 8th Assembly passed a law repealing the law enacted in 2015 for the recovery of looted funds and government properties but the former Governor, Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar could not assent to the law till his tenure expired on May 29, 2019.

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