Angered by the suspension of the controversial payment of $418million to Paris Club consultants by President Muhammadu Buhari, the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, and the Chief of Staff to the President, Prof Ibrahim Gambari, are presently plotting the sack of the Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed, SaharaReporters has gathered.
SaharaReporters learnt that to achieve their aim, the two senior government officials have started unearthing several alleged “atrocious acts” committed by Ahmed to leave Buhari with no option than to replace the finance minister.
Ahmed was first appointed on September 14, 2018 after the resignation of Kemi Adeosun and re-appointed months after the 2019 general election.
Sources told SaharaReporters that Gambari and Malami had tricked Buhari to approve the Paris Club claims because Nigeria’s foreign assets “might be attached.”
The president subsequently approved the payment and directed the Ministry of Finance to ask the Debt Management Office (DMO) to pay in form of promissory notes.
However, acting on a petition from the Nigerian Governors’ Forum, SaharaReporters gathered that Ahmed and the Director-General of the DMO, Patience Oniha, advised Buhari about the negative implications of the payments on the economy.
They also convinced the president to heed the governor’s warning and stop the controversial payment of the $418million to the consultants.
“They were shocked that the President could suspend the payment; Gambari, Malami, Buhari’s son-in-law, Gambari’s son, were promised about 40 per cent of the total payment. Unfortunately, these companies and individuals they want the Nigerian government to pay didn’t do any job for such amount of money to be paid to them,” a presidential source told SaharaReporters.
“They got angry with Ahmed Zainab, claiming she advised the President against releasing the money. This is not the first time they would be having issue with her though; the cabals thought they could use her like they were using Kemi Adeosun. They have started cooking up different allegations against her which will be presented to the President soon; they call it the Magu’s treatment.
“They also want to remove Patience Oniha as the Director General of the DMO. Since they failed to use judges (fake court orders) to force her to release the promissory notes that they don't deserve, they started threatening her to make sure that she is removed. They also want to use her workers at the DMO to embarrass her by going on strike.”