Buhari’s kinsman escapes, as corruption war gets brutal

By Amako Nneji January 8, 2016 15:47

Buhari’s kinsman escapes, as corruption war gets brutal

Two truckloads of Security operatives on Friday, January 8, 2015 besieged the house of President Muhammadu Buhari’s kinsman and former Comptroller-General of the Nigerian Customs Service, Abdullahi Inde Dikko, on Ahmed Musa Street, Jabi, Abuja holding the family members hostage.

At the time of the alleged invasion, it was reported that the ex-custom boss had “sneaked” out of the country leaving his family members behind.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, arrived the house of the former customs boss in Toyota Hiace trucks with registration numbers RSH 555 AB and BWA 645 GA to search the house of Dikko who was said to be out of the country.

The swift raiding of Dikko’s home came barely 48 hours when the EFCC took a swoop and arrested Buhari’s close associate and a chieftain of the ruling All Progressives Congress, Lawal Jafaru Isa.

Isa is the first chieftain of the APC arrested by the EFCC since the beginning of a sweeping probe into the alleged diversion of $2.1 billion meant for arms purchase by officials of the immediate-past administration.

The reason for the raid at Dikkos’s residence by security operatives may not be unconnected with his 6 years of stewardship as the Comptroller General of customs.

“From the information available to me, no search warrant was presented before the commencement of the search.

“As I speak to you, they are currently in my uncle’s bedroom carrying out the search in his absence,” he said.

“The only people in the house at the commencement of this search and even till now are his children who are below the ages of 18,” a relative to the former custom boss said.

Dikko who is from Katsina State became Comptroller-General of Customs on August 17, 2009. He resigned his appointment in August, 2015, four months into Buhari’s administration.

See: Why Customs’ embattled boss resigned

Dikko’s tenure which was due to run for the next 2 years was cut short after he resigned following reports that Buhari had decided to fire and arrest several top Customs officers who were currently being investigated for corruption.

Buhari had earlier turned down the resignation letter, asking Abdullahi to give him time to study the Customs and its operations.

Dikko hails from Musawa Local Government Area in Katsina State and had reportedly visited Buhari just before the May 29 inauguration ceremony.

Dikko was allegedly trying to inform Buhari about the situation at various borders, seaports and the airports in Nigeria but was turned away by his kinsman who described the visit as unhealthy, unethical and disloyal to a Government he was still serving. However his gifts were rejected.

See: EFCC moves after Jonathan’s kitchen cabinet members

The Presidential Spokesman, Garba Shehu, who was the then Director of Media and Publicity of the APC, in a statement, had dismissed the report as fictional and uncharitable.

According to the statement, no such incident took place on April 15 as reported by some online newspapers.

In 2009, one Olajide Oyewole alleged that Abdullahi had forged his academic credentials with his help.

In a video testimony obtained by an online media, Oyewole stressed that Dikko illegally obtained Certificates No 10912 and 10993 belonging to the Nigerian Institute of Management, NIM, and also forged the West African Examinations Council Certificate No. NGSG 37836.

These documents enabled him to eventually become Comptroller-General of Customs.

See: EXCLUSIVE: How EFCC ignored volumes of petition against APC heavy weight