Group accuses Nigerian Water Resources Minister Adamu of covering up corruption and stealing funds from ministry
The Minister of Water Resources, Eng. Suleiman Hussein Adamu has been accused of covering for the Director General of the Lower Niger River Basin, Dr Aremu Saheed, accused of corruption and embezzlement.
A group seeking to improve agricultural development in Nigeria, Agric Watch, accused the minister of sharing corruption revenues with Saheed.
He also expressed his dissatisfaction with the minister’s alleged nonchalance over the allegations against Saheed.
The group made this known in a letter obtained by SaharaReporters, addressed to the Minister of Water Resources and jointly signed by the group’s coordinator and its scribe, respectively Alhassan T. Mohammed and Bode Seun.
In the letter, the group claimed that the minister had sent a team led by the ministry’s permanent secretary to the organization, to intimidate or financially induce the staff union – Nigeria Union of Agric and Allied Employees, into abandoning their position. and their allegations against their CEO.
He called for Saheed’s impeachment over allegations relating to corruption, embezzlement and budget allocations and maladministration.
The letter reads in part as follows: “Our organization has seen several posts by the Union of Agriculture on several media forums on the call for the dismissal of the Director General of the Lower Niger River Basin Development Authority , a Dr. Saheed Aremu, on allegations bordering on corruption, embezzlement of funds and budget allocations and maladministration.
“We have decided to set up a team of private investigators to travel to Kwara State to investigate the allegations by visiting the project sites and even to the Auditor General’s office to inquire about the authenticity of the auditors’ report which damningly accuses the director general.
“Mr. Minister, our organization which is comprised of agricultural sector professionals and stakeholders including agri media advocates across Nigeria, charged with ensuring transparency and justice in the agricultural sector and renowned for monitoring budget allocations, has its spotlight specifically on the Ministries of Agriculture and Water Resources.
“Having observed the efforts of President Mohammed Buhari, GCFR, to inject funds into the sector, but with minimal effect due to various corrupt practices by ministry officers and agency and parastatal chief executives, we stand ready to ensure justice by exposing the culprits and bringing them to justice by all legal means and anti-corruption agencies.
“Honourable ministers sir, we are displeased with your nonchalant attitude towards the allegations and the character of the director general, instead you have sent your senior ministerial team led by the permanent secretary to the organization either to intimidate and financially induce Union staff -Nigeria Union of Agric and Allied Employees, to drop their position and claims against their Managing Director.
“Your action is unfortunately contrary to the anti-corruption stance of this administration and the federal constitution which you have sworn to uphold. Your action lends credence to insinuations that Dr Aremu Saheed, the Director General of the Lower Niger River shared the proceeds of his corruption with you.
“We are also disappointed with the Staff Union for being the victim of your incitement and harassment in which they abandoned their noble cause to engage in the threat of industrial action to press their demands for justice.
“Mr. Minister, through our investigation, we have therefore concluded to give the following opinion:
“We demand a thorough investigation into the activities of all river basin developments across Nigeria, to see if the funds provided during the period of this administration are being spent properly in accordance with the government’s transparency policy. ‘administration.
“That Dr. Saheed Aremu has no moral right to continue to perform his duties based on the said auditors report and other allegations.
“That Dr. Saheed Aremu must be excused from performing this year’s budget allocation.
“That the appropriate anti-corruption agencies be brought in for further investigation be prosecuted and the funds recovered and returned to the sector.”
“That the Ministry review the activities of the River Basin Development Authorities in Nigeria for effective service in line with its mandate.
“Mr. Minister, if the necessary steps are not taken as stated above, we will be forced to go to court as law-abiding taxpayers and patriotic citizens of Nigeria,” the letter added.