Jibrin under fire over £1.3m foreign account

…group petitions EFCC, CCB

Former chairman of the Appropriation Committee of the House of Representatives, Abdulmumin Jibrin, is under fire over his just uncovered £1.3m foreign account.

The lawmaker is being called upon to resign immediately for contravening the law.

Paragraph 3, Part 1 of the Fifth Schedule to the 1999 Constitution provides that, “The President, Vice President, Members of the National Assembly and Houses of Assembly of states and such other public officers or persons as the National Assembly may by law prescribe shall not maintain or operate a bank account in any country outside Nigeria.”

Paragraph 18 of the same schedule provides to the effect that where the Code of Conduct Tribunal finds a public officer guilty of contravention of the provision, the punishments to be imposed include vacation of office or seat, disqualification from membership of a legislative house, seizure or forfeiture of assets or property being proceeds of such corruption and prosecution in addition to the above sanctions where the conduct constitutes a crime.

National Youth Council of Nigeria, NYCN, had alleged on Sunday that Jibrin owns and operates a foreign account with ING Bank, Channels Island, United Kingdom.

NYCN Head of Anti Corruption Unit, Ifeanyi Okonkwo, had said that the bank, which Jibrin operates an account is located at Forum House, Grenville Street, St-Heller, Jersey JE2 4UF, Channels Island, United Kingdom.

Okonkwo further alleged that the lawmaker opened the account with his address at 453 Crankbrook Road, Ilford, Essex IG2 6EW.

He said details of the account statement obtained by some lawyers in the UK indicates that Jibrin has £1.558m (N825m equivalent) between June 1st 2016 to June 30 2016.

Jibrin, however, withdrew £623.44 within the one month period bringing the balance in the account to £1.376,193.84.

An activist, Kayode Ogundamisi had on his Twitter, asked the lawmaker for clarification on documents linking him to the foreign account, including the ownership of a property which was used as the address on the account.

Jibrin had replied, demanding to know what Ogundamisi would do following the revelation.

“Oga, now that you have found out that I own the property, what’s next,” Jibrin had tweeted at Ogundamisi.

But when negative reactions started pouring in, the lawmaker denied having any link to the account.

He said: “I urge the public to disregard this latest blackmail as the document in circulation is not worth a toilet paper.”

The lawmaker also accused the Speaker, Yakubu Dogara, of sponsoring what he described as propaganda against him through his Deputy Chief of Staff, adding he had directed his lawyers to report the matter to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, and the police.

The Speaker’s aide has since denied any connections with NYCN’s allegations.

Also yesterday, NYCN National President, Ikenga Imo, led a group of Civil Society Organisations under the umbrella of Coalition in Defence of Democracy, CCD, to demand for Jibrin’s resignation over the alleged foreign account.

Imo, who spoke at a press briefing in Abuja disclosed that as follow up to an earlier petition submitted to EFCC, he would today deliver detailed petition against Hon. Jibrin on the allegation.

The NYCN president called on the leadership of the House to suspend Jibrin as he had severally violated Section 24 sub-section 1 of the Legislative House Powers and Privileges Act.

He said: “We demand that the House of Representatives immediately suspend Hon. Abdulmumin Jibrin as a member of the House for the blackmail of the leadership and members, bringing the House to disrepute and scandalously reducing the standing of the leadership of the House of Representatives in the eye of ordinary citizen.”