The embattled former Governor of Adamawa State, Murtala Nyako, on Wednesday blasted the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission [EFCC] for declaring him and his son wanted.
The former governor described the anti-graft agency’s latest ambush on him as the last kicks of a dying horse, saying President Goodluck Jonathan, will soon be kicked out of office.
Mr. Nyako who spoke to PREMIUM TIMES through his media assistant, Ahmed Sajoh, also noted that the Jonathan administration is intimidated by the soaring support he (Nyako) has continued to get even after he left office.
“I am not aware of being declared wanted. But that is good,” Mr. Nyako said.
“If you are wanted by a rouge system, it means you are a good person. Has this government gone after anybody that is bad? They only run after the good people and allow the bad people to roam around them, live happily and enjoy whatever bad things they are doing.”
Mr. Nyako said he is not surprised at the latest action of the EFCC and noted that many more Nigerians will be declared wanted by the government.
He argued that the government is being intimidated by the mammoth crowd that turned out for the All Progressives Congress, APC, rally in Yola, the Adamawa State capital.
According to him, the Jonathan government is afraid that even when he (Nyako) was no longer in office, the people of Adamawa State still love and support him.
He drew attention to how the crowd went wild with dancing when one of the songs eulogising the former governor was played at the APC rally in Yola, saying no amount of blackmail can stop the people from loving Mr. Nyako.
“When the time comes for them to be declared wanted nobody will sympathise with them,” he concluded.
PREMIUM TIMES has broken the story of how the former Adamawa governor was declared wanted by the EFCC.
Also wanted by the anti graft body is the son of the ex-governor, Abdul Aziz Murtala Nyako, a retired Naval officer.
Both are wanted in a case of criminal conspiracy, stealing, abuse of office and money laundering.
The EFCC had in June 2014, shortly before the former governor was impeached, frozen the bank accounts belonging to Adamawa in what it then called a precautionary measure to safeguard the state treasury amidst evidence of looting uncovered by its operatives.
The commission had alleged massive looting of the treasury by top officials of Adamawa State government under Mr. Nyako, a development that, at the time, led to the arrest and questioning of key officials, including then Secretary to the State Government, the then State Commissioner for Finance, the then Commissioner for Higher Education, the then Accountant General of the State and the then Permanent Secretary, Ministry for Local Government.
The EFCC said at the time that its investigation was triggered by petitions alleging massive looting of the treasury by the governor and his cronies through an illegal department called Special Programme and Project Units, SPPU, which engaged in over invoicing and inflation of contract.
“In the course of investigation, a critical analysis of the Joint State/Local Government account reveals massive cash withdrawals,” a source at the commission had told PREMIUM TIMES at the time.
The EFCC official accused the then Permanent Secretary of Local Governments of making cash withdrawals of over N2 billion in 181 different transactions, scattered in tranches of N3 million, N4 million, N8 million and N9 million per transaction from the State/Local Government account domiciled with First Bank between 29th of August 2011 and 2012.
He also allegedly made similar cash withdrawals amounting to over N500 million between March 6, 2008, and March 4, 2011, from another Joint account domiciled in Keystone Bank, the source added.
“Other officials of the ministry who allegedly looted the Joint Account include Justina Jari, a Principal Accountant with the ministry who made cash withdrawals to the tune of N600 million from the Joint Account between October, 2009 and February, 2011.
“Another staff of the ministry, Abdulhakeem Mohammed was also alleged to have withdrawn about N3 billion from the account between February 2007 and May 2011. Two other staff, Mercy Wanje and Jumai Salihu were also said to have made withdrawals of N1 billion and N160 million from the account respectively,” the source said.
“On a single day, another staff called Haruna Hamali, a principal store officer made a cash withdrawal of over N70 million from the same account,” he said.
“The withdrawals were made and the money returned to top officials of the state government as narrated and confirmed by the officials who made the withdrawals.
“The state officials were arrested in connection with the withdrawals and other ongoing investigations,” the source said at the time.