Wednesday, March 21, 2007

PTDF: The issue, not politics

Has anyone noticed that once a counter accusations is made in the person of the president from the Atiku's camp, the whole world quickly forget the real issue?
Here is a list of exact corrupt accusations against the VP, but instead of us to address the real issue, and let him prove himself against the allegations, we leave the real issue to issue that can crucify the president. Since Atiku camp are profiteering from such scenarios, they in turn find an avenue to hide their misdeeds.
Here are the findings of EFCC as stated below:
From the investigation so far conducted the following facts have been established as follows:-
• That PTDF came into existence in 1973 following the promulgation of Decree No. 25 of 1973 for the sole objective of building capacity in the Oil and Gas Sector of the Nigerian Economy through various activities.
• That to realize this objective, funds are released to PTDF from time to time by the Federal Government after due processes have been followed and approval obtained from the Federal Executive Council.
• In line with this process the sum of $125 Million was approved by His Excellency, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo on 25th April, 2003 for PTDF vide a memo, dated 10/04/03 presented to the Federal Executive Council by the Presidential Adviser on Petroleum and Energy, Alhaji Rilwan Lukman who was the Chairman of the Technical Implementation Committee of the Fund.
• The Vice President (VP), through a letter Ref:SH/VP/254 dated April 29, 2003, granted approval to PTDF to invest the proceeds of US$125million in the following banks and amounts:-
*Trans International Bank (TIB) –US$10m
*Equitorial trust Bank ltd (ETB)- US$115m

•In compliance with the approval –US$62,100,000:00 was transferred to PTDF Dollar Domiciliary Account with Equitorial Trust Bank on 17/07/2003 at an interest rate of 15% per annum.
• By its letter of August 20, 2003, PTDF transferred additional US$52,900,000:00 to ETB, which brought the total deposit of the fund with ETB to US$115,000,000:00 as approved by the VP.
• The VP also approved that the US$115million be invested as follows:-
*US$100million to be converted to Naira at N128 to $1 and the proceeds invested under Term Deposit at 14% interest per annum.
*US$15million be held in PTDF Domiciliary Account under Term Deposit for 180 days at 1.5% interest per annum
• That on 18/10/03, the VP gave the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF) approval to release $20m to PTDF, without referring to the Executive Council, following a request from the Executive Secretary, Yusuf H. Abubakar for an urgent release of the fund to enable him complete some projects of PTDF, but contrary to the purpose of the request to execute the projects, the ES placed the funds in a term deposit in TIB for 365 days at 1.75% interest rate.
• That the placement of the PTDF’s fund were not done arbitrarily, but deliberately designed to promote some business ventures in which the VP and some of his friends has interest.
• That the placement in TIB for instance was designed to promote Netlink Digital Television – NDTV, a satellite television project and Mofas Shipping Company where the Chairman of both companies is Otumba Fasawe, a long standing friend of the V.P.
• That as soon as the first placement of $10million Dollars was made by PTDF at TIB, the Bank granted loans to NDTV and Mofas in the sums of N400million on the 20/10/2003 and N420million on the 22/10/2003 respectively.
• That equally interesting is the fact that as soon as the second placement of $20million Dollars was made by PTDF with TIB, another loan of N730million was granted to NDTV on the 1/1/2004.
• That it was from this loan of N730million, that NDTV remitted the sum of $6.5million Dollars to iGATE in January 2004 as their contribution to their joint business venture.
• It has also been revealed that Otumba Fasawe remitted the sum of N400milliom to the V.P’s Personal Assistant Alhaji Umaru Pariya on the 4/10/03 which he conveniently recovered through a loan of N420million he received from TIB on the 22/10/03 after the PTDF’s funds placement.
• That a clear demonstration of the V.P’s business interest in NDTV is the fact that on 07/01/03 he paid the initial sum of N30million deposit from his Marine Float account in Bank PHB for the purchase of the property situated at No. 555, Ademola Adetokunbo Street, Wuse II, Abuja and used as its Headquarters.
• That the balance of N170million for the purchase of the NDTV Headquarters was not paid until after PTDF has made the initial $10million Dollars deposit with TIB and loan of N400million was granted to NDTV.
• That to further buttress the long standing business relationship between the V.P. and Otunba Fasawe the latter paid the V.P. the sum of N61million on 29/01/01 from his Mofas shipping account with TIB.
• That a further sum of N250million from Mofas Shipping Company account of Otunba Fasawe in TIB was transferred to V.P.’s Marine Float account in Bank PHB on 18/02/03.
• That one Mrs. Maureen Scurry, now Maureen Edu, a former employee of U.S Exim Bank as a business Development Specialist on Africa who, that time represented Exim bank during the NDTV /iGate deal was wired sum of $100,000 on 27/02/04 to her personal account with FSB Washington DC by NDTV through TIB. And this formed part of loan granted NDTV by TIB.
• That the sum of $133,870 and $40,312 were paid to Sofitel Incorporated by NDTV as commitment and processing fee for the repayment of the $6.5m paid to iGate and exclusive of all the loans granted to NDTV by TIB.
• That the U.S based Lawyer, Jean Michael Malek P.C was also paid the sum of $5000 as legal fee in part as a lawyer representing NDTV in the US over the project with iGate.
• That the loans granted to Otunba Fasawe and related companies by the bank, TIB, stood at N1.5 Billion beside the $6.5m granted the NDTV/iGate venture.
• That the NDTV/iGate venture collapsed and iGate agreed upon negotiation to repay the sum of $4m to NDTV, which uptill date only $1.75m had so far been repaid in two tranche of $1m and $750,000.
• That out of the $30million placement made by PTDF in TIB, $23.75million stood as the current balance yet unpaid.
• That another loan of N300m was granted to Ahmed Vanderpuije (MD NDTV) through his other Company Trans-vari Services Limited on 23/10/03 even without collateral just at the time when the two placements from PTDF had already hit TIB.
• That from these funds granted Ahmed Vanderpuije the sum of $110,000 was used in publishing the Nda Yakubu’s book entitled; Nigeria Laws on Public Finances.
• That the first placement of funds by PTDF with Equitorial Trust Bank (ETB), took place on the 25/06/02 in the sum of $50million Dollars from the account of PTDF with UBA New York.
• That it was after the placement of the $50million that Otunba Mike Adenuga paid $20million Dollars non refundable deposit to NCC for the bidding of the Second National Order (SNO) to Globacom on the 06/08/02.
• That the V.P. directed PTDF to make two additional placements of funds with ETB in the sums of $52.9million Dollars on the 20/08/03 and $62.1million Dollars on the 17/07/03
• That the trio of the Vice President, the Executive Secretary of the PTDF, Yusuf H. Abubakar and Otunba Mike Adenuga met in the office/Residence of the Vice President to discuss the placement of the $115m in ETB by PTDF.
• That Globacom equity structure was found to be Conpetro Ltd 51% Alh G. Subair 24%, Prince Babatunde Akinyera 12.5% and Festus Okechukwu Igbomor 12.5% contrary to Chief Adenuga’s claim of sole ownership. That Prince Babatunde Akinyera is believed to be fronting for His Excellency Alhaji Atiku Abubakar for the 12.5% against his name.
• That the Federal Executive Council meeting that approved the NSO license to Globacom was chaired by the V.P.
• That the erstwhile Executive Secretary of PTDF Alhaji Hamisu Yusuf Abubakar was also rewarded with a N200million loan from ETB and a trucking contract with Conoil, a company owned by Mr. Mike Adenuga.
• That contrary to the believe that it was only the sum of $115million Dollars was placed in ETB by PTDF, it has been discovered again that another $50million Dollars was transferred from UBA New Work PTDF Account to ETB with the knowledge of the approving authority just at the time Otumba Mike Adenuga was to pay his $20m fee deposit for Globacom to NCC.
• That $165million invested in ETB by PTDF was returned to CBN, including the accruing interest, when directives were issued in July 2004 that all accounts of Government Ministries and Parastatals were to return to Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN.
• That even the initial N30 million paid by NDTV as deposit for the purchase of the property situated at No. 555, Ademola Adetokunbo Street, Wuse II, Abuja and used as its Headquarters was sourced from an account in Bank PHB owned and controlled by His Excellency the V.P.
• That it has been ascertained the V.P. stood as one of the referees to Otunba Fasawe when NDTV applied for Value Added Network (internet) Service from NCC and the offer was granted.

• That the given address of Alhaji G. Subair, 2/3 Dawaki Road Kaduna is a property belonging to Mohammed Badamasi Babangida, first son to the former military President, pointing to the fact that the shares might belong to the latter.

• That it has been established, Yusuf H. Abubakar, demanded and received $2million kick back from UNIVATION Ltd a UK based Company that was awarded $5million upgrade contract of PTI by PTDF in which he has already retuned N200million out of it.

His Excellency is hereby invited to note:
i. That this investigation was initiated at the instance of a request from the United States Department of Justice.
ii. That the request was sequel to an investigation carried out by the U S authorities which involved certain Government officials, institutions and Private individuals in both U S and Nigeria.
iii. That among those directly affected by the investigation in Nigeria, is the Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in the person of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.
iv. That two state Executive Governors in the persons of their Excellencies Chief Victor Attah and Alhaji Ibrahim Saminu Turaki, the Governors of Akwa Ibom and Jigawa States, respectively were also mentioned in the request.
v. That in the investigation so far carried out, no wrong doing could be traced to them unlike the case of the Vice President who has been found to have mismanaged the PTDF funds and abused his office.
vi. That the use of the PTDF funds to promote businesses is instrumental to the large scale mismanagement, misappropriation and abuse of office as highlighted in this report.
vii. That Otunba Mike Adenuga who was earlier arrested, interrogated and granted bail failed to turn up when he was invited for further interview as he was said to have absconded.
viii. That the investigation is still on going and may lead to more individuals being prosecuted.

The Government is hereby requested to approve the following:
a) That PTDF should be removed from the supervision of the office of the Vice President.
b) That the Commission should recover all Public funds embezzled from individuals and institutions involved in this case.
c) That the erstwhile Executive Secretary of the PTDF, Yusuf Hamisu Abubakar, Otunba Fasawe and all those who aided or facilitated in the embezzlement and mismanagement of the funds should be prosecuted.
d) That the corporate entity of Globacom will be protected and preserved, while legal processes will be taken to recover all shares acquired fraudulently or with public funds.
Sir, I respectfully submit to you this report for your kind consideration and necessary action, please.

Executive Chairman

Here below is also the findings of Administrative panel report that indicted the VP
a) We are of the view that His Excellency, Vice President Atiku Abubakar (hereinafter referred to as the VP) abused his office and position by diverting funds approved for the PTDF operations to placements in ETB and TIB Plc instead of implementing the projects budgeted for. The funds were deposited in the two banks at below-market rates over a period of time.
b) Indeed, the projects are only being approved for implementation in 2006 which raises the question why the funds were withdrawn from the Treasury in the first place, so many years ago. It is the view of the Panel that these actions benefited private business interests and those of the VP’s friends and associates like Otunba Fasawe and Chief Mike Adenuga rather than the public interest of accelerated implementation of the projects.
c) We also find that the VP’s action in unilaterally approving the disbursement of the sum of US$20m (without the approval of the President and the Federal Executive Council as was done for the initial US$125m), violated the constitution and amounted to conduct unbecoming of the VP’s high office.
d) We view the VP’s explanation to the Panel that he thought the President and FEC’s global approval of the sum of US$125m covered him on this subsequent approval as untenable.

i) On the basis of the findings above, the VP should be indicted and held accountable for the various acts of embezzlement and fraud that took place in PTDF with his approval and under his supervision.
ii) In view of the VP’s constitutional immunity, the matter should be referred to the Code of Conduct Bureau for necessary action.

The above is the real issue, has anyone ponder whether the VP has proved beyond reasonable doubt that he did not commit those offences and therefore not liable to be indicted, no, what he did mostly instead of disproving the allegations is to raise counter-allegations. But because that is what most Nigerians wants especially those that the president has stepped on their toes, we all go haywire.
Just thought may be you may want to ponder along this line again.

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