Okonjo-Iweala Should Be Included in Probe – Gov. Oshiomhole
The Edo State Governor Adams Oshiomhole yesterday said former Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister for the Economy, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, should be joined in the probe of the $2billion arms procurement scandal.
The governor said the arms deal scam linked to the former National Security Adviser (NSA), Sambo Dasuki, is a tip of the iceberg and one of the leaking points in the past administration.
He alleged that the past administrations engaged in “arrangee stealing”.
Oshiomhole spoke at the State House in Abuja after a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said: “The NSA is supposed to be an advisory officer; he is not supposed to be a procurement agent for government. I am happy the figures are coming out and I know that this is a tip of the iceberg and I read some reports, the numbers are in billions, Dasuki is just one bleeding point; there are several bleeding points in the system.
“You look at the total number of expenditure on subsidy which the World Bank has just released figures; about how many trillions of Naira over the past four to five years,” he said
On Dr. Okonjo-Iweala, the governor said: “I am shocked. I have been talking about it, I just said to a couple of persons, the government has to go the whole hog, because I know as a governor that no money gets out of the treasury even after I have approved as the governor without the approval of the Commissioner for Finance; so the probe should go into whether all these monies are appropriated all of it; when the money got out of the treasury, through who? The Minister of Finance under the rules must endorse before money gets out of the treasury, before the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) approves.
“So for the Ministers of Finance, including Okonjo – Iweala, I don’t care what people say because you cannot be coordinating a corruption-ridden economy and you pretend to be an angel, you cannot selectively deal with issues; you must deal with all involved in the conspiracy. In criminal law when two to three people are involved in a act of criminality, all of them are charged with conspiracy.”
“Now if you lay your hands on the various appropriation bills passed by the National Assembly and see how much the National Assembly appropriated for subsidy for all those periods, you will find out they are not even up to half of what was spent.
“This means that money not appropriated for was spent. If people are involved in those acts, they must be brought to justice,” he added.