The immediate past Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Alpha Beta Consultants, Mr Dapo Apara, has revealed how former Lagos State governor and national leader of the All Progressives Congress, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, used Osun State governor, Adegboyega Oyetola, as front for the establishment of the firm.
Alpha Beta Consulting was awarded a contract by the Lagos State Government when Tinubu was governor of the state after a recommendation by a committee comprising the then Attorney-General of Lagos State, Prof Yemi Osinbajo (now the Vice President of Nigeria); Mr Wale Edun, then Commissioner for Finance; and a former Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Yemi Cardoso.
The firm was subsequently given exclusive rights to collect taxes on behalf of the Lagos State Government and was believed to receive about 10 per cent commission from the revenue it collected for the state.
However, pro-transparency groups and opposition politicians have constantly alleged that Tinubu owned Alpha Beta even though his name is not on any of the company's documents.
In a statement of claim filed at the Lagos State High Court, Apara, alleged that the company had become an avenue for official corruption of government officers, a conduit pipe for massive money laundering scheme, tax evasion, among other vices.
Other fronts used by Tinubu according to the former Alpha Beta boss are Olumide Ogunmola and Tunde Badejo.
The suit has Alpha Beta, Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Akin Doherty as 1st, 2nd and 3rd defendants respectively.
“The claimant avers that sometime in 2000, he solely conceived, prepared and presented a proposal to the Lagos State Government on providing consultancy services using his fim, Infiniti Systems Enterprises, (the claimant) with respect to using computerisation to track and reconcile the Internally Generated Revenue of the State.
“The claimant avers that following the presentation of his proposal to the Lagos State Government, the 2nd defendant (Bola Ahmed Tinubu) who was at the time the governor of Lagos State demanded that 70 per cent equity interest in the project be assigned to a certain Olumide Ogunmola before he, the 2nd defendant will approve the project.
“The claimant avers that he then met the said Olumide Ogunmola (who he had never met before) and it was agreed that a limited liability company be incorporated in which the claimant will hold 30 per cent shares while Olumide Ogunmola and his partners will hold 70 per cent of the shares of the company.
“The claimant avers that following the agreement alluded to above; Alpha Beta Consulting Limited was incorporated in 2002 with the following shareholding ratio: Dapo Apara - 30 per cent, Olumide Ogunmola - 40 per cent, Adegboyega Oyetola - 30 per cent.
“The claimant avers that upon the commencement of business operations, the 2nd defendant (Bola Ahmed Tinubu) directed that the 30 per cent shareholding of Adegboyega Oyetola be transferred to one Mr. Tunde Badejo. This was done.
“The claimant avers that after the incorporation of Alpha Beta Consulting Ltd in 2002 and structured according to the dictates of the 2nd defendant (Bola Ahmed Tinubu), the 2nd defendant in his official capacity as the governor of Lagos State then approved that Alpha Beta Consulting Ltd be awarded consultancy contract for the assessment and collection on behalf of the Lagos State Government all taxes and Internally Generated Revenue due and payable to the state at a 10 per cent consultancy fee (subject to a benchmark which varies from time to time).”