Few days after Bauchi State Governor, Sen Bala Mohammed Abdulkadir assented to a bill establishing the state Public Complaints and Anti Corruption Commission (PCAC) to tackle every aspect of corruption in governance, the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state has alleged that the motive behind the establishment of the Commission is to witch-hunt and intimidate perceived political opponents.
The party made the allegation in a press release that was signed and made available by the party’s State Publicity Secretary, Adamu Ali Jallah, to DAILY POST in Bauchi on Wednesday evening.
According to the release, “since one of the cardinal objectives of the APC is to fight corruption in the country, the APC in the state would have welcomed the development , but it strongly suspects the motive behind the creation of the commission at this critical time” .
The APC alleged that “given Governor Bala Mohammed antecedents of intolerance to opposition and desperation to hang on to power by all means” , it believes that the creation of the commission is to oppress, witch-hunt past and present public servants, PDP members who are defecting to the APC and anyone he views as a threat to his re-election bid and his appetite for corruption.
According to the party, “From the on-set, Governor Bala Mohammed has shown his true colour as a legalistic autocrat and succeeded in under-mining the State House of Assembly when he enabled 11 out of the 31 members to elect the Speaker”.
The release further disclosed that, “His aim was to neutralize the second arm of government constitutionally created to check and over-sight his actions and hold him accountable.He has weaken the chain of constitutional control on his executive powers.Thus, it is doubtful whether PCAC has followed the due process of law.”
The APC further disclosed that, “Secondly, the Governor has emasculated the State Judiciary by refusing to grant them the financial autonomy granted to them by the constitution.”
“Thirdly, Governor Bala Mohammed has waged a sustained war on the state bureaucracy in order to intimidate, silence and cower the state Civil service to passive submission so as to rule the state like a corrupt amoral king without due regard for due process, rule of law or democratic norms”, it added.
It stressed that, “More importantly, Bala Mohammed is trying to oust the jurisdiction and impede the EFCC and ICPC to prosecute corrupt allegations against him, his family and nevertheless, to prove themselves.
“We challenge PCAC to immediately start Investigation and expeditiously prosecute the following corrupt allegations to include N30 Billion loan from UBA Plc for project across the state, N 3.6 billion vehicles contract Kaura gave to himself and his family and friends through Adda Nig. Ltd.”
The party also stated that, “Other allegations are the recent sales of Bauchi state assets and Companies to Kaura’s family and friends; Over N1.2 billion monthly security vote mismanagement; N8 billion Federal Government refunded funds for road construction.
“The N11 billion Kaura inherited in FCMB account belonging, N6.2 billion renovation of Government House; Contract for outsourcing of Salary Payment to a consultants, a company alleged to be his son’s or his proxies thereby fleecing Bauchi State of billions of naira monthly.”
The APC further alleged that, “The sale of student hostel by the Governor’s wife to the ATB COE Kangere while she continues to collect rent after sale form student; Over N8 billion Covid-19 intervention fund; N5 billion contract for the renovation of (20) LGAs Secretariats, and N1.35 billion Kaura used to buy goats”.
“Failure to investigate and prosecute these allegations will only re enforce our reasonable suspicion that the PCAC is created to fight Bala Mohammed personal battles, witch-hunt political opponents and protect himself from the EFCC, ICPC and other federal agencies fighting corruption.
“The APC and the good people of Bauchi reject this and will soon vote out this corrupt, nepotistic and neopatrimonial government of Bala Mohammed and replace it with Air Marshal Sadique’s for the good of Bauchi State”.
Bauchi: Gov Mohammed’s anti-corruption commission tool to witch-hunt, intimidate opponents – APC alleges