‘Unusual transactions’ were uncovered in the accounts from January 1st, 2015 to August 31st, 2021.
A document from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Central Bank of Nigeria has exposed how the Sokoto State Government led by Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwa stole, diverted about N189 billion from the state-owned accounts to private individuals.
The document signed by DCE AS Abubakar and addressed to the chairman of the commission, Abdulrasheed Bawa revealed that ‘unusual transactions’ were uncovered in the accounts from January 1st, 2015 to August 31st, 2021.
According to Abubakar, the accounts received a total cumulative inflow of N567,160,024,619.93 within the said period out of which N189,155,043,825.09 was illegally diverted.
“The Department recently carried out financial profiling of the Sokoto State Government. This profiling was aimed at identifying the state government’s accounts that may have been exposed to Diversion, misappropriation of public funds and money laundering by government officials,” part of the documents obtained by SaharaReporters read.
“Analysis of the state government’s activities from 1st of January, 2015 to August 31st, 2021 uncovered unusual transactions in the following accounts. 1) Accountant General Sokoto FAAC Account Number 0697434238, Access Bank.
“ii) Secretary to the State Government Account Number 0700669798, Access Bank. iii) Permanent Secretary Government House Account number 0700669554, Access Bank.
“3) Specifically, the above-stated accounts received a total cumulative inflow of 567,160,024,619.93 (Five Hundred and Sixty Seven Billion, One Hundred and Sixty Million, Twenty Four Thousand, Six Hundred and Nineteen Naira, Ninety-Three Kobo) out of which 189,155,043,825.09 (One Hundred and Eighty-Nine Billion, One Hundred and Fifty-Five Million, Forty-Three Eight Hundred and Twenty Five Naira, Nine Kobo) was withdrawn in favour of government officials, individuals (suspected to be cashiers), companies and other groups/agencies.”
The anti-graft agency listed the beneficiaries of the alleged diverted funds as Abubakar Mohammed Barau, Abubakar Bello Gandi, Buba S. Sambo, Kabir Aminu Tafida, Shuabi Mohammed and the Permanent Secretary, Sokoto State Government House.
“In light of the findings, it is assessed with a high degree of confidence that the named individuals (suspected to be cashiers) and identified government officials are involved in the diversion of public funds, misappropriation of State Government funds and money laundering activities,” the document further reads.
“The following are suggested for investigation; Investigation should commence on other state government accounts in order to identify other accounts that are prone to unwholesome acts of state officials.
“Investigate the named individuals and identified government officials in order to know the extent of their involvement. Investigate FAAC account payouts to private companies; Nagarta Microfinance Bank and Bilya Micro System.”
Governor of the state, Tambuwal had earlier in the month declared interest to contest the 2023 presidential election on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
When contacted, special assistant to Tambuwal on new media told SaharaReporters he wasn’t aware of the document. He however failed to react to it hours after sending it to him on WhatsApp.