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    REVEALED: How Kogi state Governor Bello squanders Public funds using proxies to launder billions of Naira

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    Naija247news Editorial Teamhttps://www.naija247news.com/
    Naija247news is an investigative news platform that tracks news on Nigerian Economy, Business, Politics, Financial and Africa and Global Economy.

    New revelations show how Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, allegedly launders hundreds of millions of Naira of state cash through proxies and state officials, award contracts without due process, award contracts to non-legal persons, and wanton circumvention of procurement procedures.
    Other documented financial sharp practices by Bello also include, borrowing from non-capital markets, fraudulent loans, award of contracts to vested interests, payments without transaction descriptions and award of contracts to non existing companies.
    According to a Kogi based transparency group, Anti-Corruption Network, Bello allegedly ordered the transfer of a total of N735,596,904 (Seven Hundred and Thirty Five Million, Five Hundred and Ninety Six Thousand, Nine Hundred and Four Naira) to SANUSI BELLO IBRAHIM without description with the highest sum as N134,101,935 (One Hundred and Thirty-Four Million, One Hundred and One Thousand, Nine Hundred and Thirty- Five Naira) on the 18th December, 2018 from the Kogi State Government House Zenith Bank Account Number 1010662710.
    According to the group ” There was no transaction description attached to the transactions. The funds may have been laundered or diverted for other uses other than for public good.This is contrary to Treasury Circular No. TRY/A2&B2/2009/OAGF/CAD026/V of 24th March 2009 which states that “All procurement of stores and services exceeding N200,000.00 shall be made only through the award of contract”.
    “Similarly, Treasury Circular Ref. No. TRY/A2&A3/2013 OAGF/CAD/026/V.1/188 of 9th April, 2013 emphasized that, “cash advance in excess of N200,000.00 should not be granted to any officer for procurement of goods and services but the procurement should be given out as a contract”.

    The group also alleged that “Bello ordered the transfer of a total of N100,000,000 (Hundred Million Naira) to PHILIP OMEIZA SALAWU in three tranches of N40,000,000 (Forty Million Naira) on 1/30/2018; N10,000,000 (Ten Million Naira) on 1/30/2018 and N50,000,000 (Fifty Million Naira), on 8/6/2018 from the Kogi State Statutory Revenue Account Number 1014558813 in Zenith Bank”
    Philip Salawu is the former Deputy Governor of Kogi State and contested for the Kogi State governorship seat in 2015 under the Labour Party. Philip O. Salawu who is likely a Civil Servant with Kogi State Civil Service received the transfers without any transaction description attached to it, the group alleged .

    “There was no specified description for the purpose of the funds. The funds may have been laundered or diverted for other uses other than for public good. This is contrary to Treasury Circular No. TRY/A2&B2/2009/OAGF/CAD026/V of 24th March 2009 which states that “All procurement of stores and services exceeding N200,000.00 shall be made only through the award of contract”.

    Similarly, Treasury Circular Ref. No. TRY/A2&A3/2013 OAGF/CAD/026/V.1/188 of 9th April, 2013 emphasized that, “cash advance in excess of N200,000.00 should not be granted to any officer for procurement of goods and services but the procurement should be given out as a contract”.

    The group alleged further that ” ABDULGANIYU BADAMASUIY withdrew a total of N182,250,000 (One Hundred and Eighty Two Million, Two Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira) with the highest sum as N44,000,000 (Forty-Four Million Naira) on 9th November, 2018 from the Kogi State Government House Account Number 1010662710 in Zenith Bank.
    “There was no specified description for the purpose of the funds. The funds may have been laundered or diverted for other uses other than for public good. This is contrary to Treasury Circular No. TRY/A2&B2/2009/OAGF/CAD026/V of 24th March 2009 which states that “All procurement of stores and services exceeding N200,000.00 shall be made only through the award of contract”.

    Similarly, Treasury Circular Ref. No. TRY/A2&A3/2013 OAGF/CAD/026/V.1/188 of 9th April, 2013 emphasized that, “cash advance in excess of N200,000.00 should not be granted to any officer for procurement of goods and services but the procurement should be given out as a contract”.

    “DE-KOGI GOGGLE PRODUCTION, Rc No.: 2265950 is a Business name registered on 17th July 2013 under part B of CAMA. The Business name is owned by NWOGU BARIKISU, a Senior Special Assistant to the Governor of Kogi State. Investigation discovered that De-Kogi Goggle Production received a total of N270,000,000 (Two Hundred and Seventy Million Naira) in 2019 from Kogi State Govt House Admin Zenith Bank account number 1010662710.
    :

    “This company was not declared in Nwogu Barikisu’s Code of Conduct Bureau form which contravenes Section 11(1) of the Fifth Schedule, Part 1 of the 1999 Constitution that provides as follows “Subject to the provisions of the Constitution, every public officer shall three months after coming into force of this Code of Conduct or immediately after taking office and thereafter: (a) at the end of every four years, and (b) at the end of his term of office, submit to the Code of Conduct Bureau a written declaration of all his properties, assets and liabilities and those of his unmarried children under the age of eighteen years”.

    “That Nwogu Barikisu uses the company to run private business contrary to Section 2(a) which bars a public officer from engaging or participating in the running of any private business, profession, or trade. As a business name, it is not eligible to receive such an amount of money”.

    On award of contracts to non-existing companies, the group alleged ” Bright Eyes Montessori School received N25,000,000 (Twenty-

    Five Million Naira) from Kogi State VAT account number 0703377229 in 2019 on 27/05/2019.
    Top Gas Petroleum Company received the sum of N6,277,500 (Six Million Two Hundred and Seventy-Seven Thousand Five Hundred Naira) from Kogi State IGR Main Account on 30/04/2019.
    2 Top Tuny Nigeria Enterprises was paid the sum of N5,000,000 (Five Million Naira) from Kogi State IGR Main Account on 4/10/2019.
    Tower Building Product was paid the sum of N5,300,000 (Five Million Three Hundred Thousand Naira) from Kogi State Joint Acct Allocation Committee DSRA Access bank account number 0712750840 on the 27/05/2019″

    On Bello’s penchant for illegally borrowing from the non-capital market, the group alleged ” SYCAMORE CONSULTING LIMITED was incorporated to carry on taxation, accounting and financial advisory services ONLY. But investigation shows that Sycamore Consulting Limited loaned KogI State Government a total of N3,900,000,000 ( Three Billion, Nine Hundred Thousand Naira) in batches of N1,000,000,000 (One Billion Naira) with the last batch as N1,900,000,000 ( One Billion, Nine Hundred Thousand Naira ) on the 23rd June, 2017 paid into the Kogi State IGR DSRA Access Bank Account”.
    “It is also a statement of fact that Sycamore Consulting Limited loaned Kogi State Government N11,905,000,000 (Eleven Billion, Nine Hundred and Five Million Naira) on 30th June, 2017 paid into the Kogi State IGR DSRA Access Bank Account Number, which is exactly a week after the first billions of loan. By whatever means and form, style or character, Sycamore Consulting Limited is not authorized by law to loan money to anyone as it is not a financial institution nor is it a player in the Capital Market and non capital market”.

    “The purported loan to Kogi State is viewed as the company being a conduit pipe to Gov. Yahaya Adoza Bello. The total assets of the ‘borrowing company’ is not up to N1 billion, yet it borrowed the State Government N3.9 billion in just one day”.

    “On 25th July 2017, the sum of N287, 975,645.87 (Two Hundred and Eight-Seven Million, Nine Hundred and Seventy-Five Thousand, Six Hundred and Forty-Five Naira, Eighty-Seven Kobo) was paid back to Sycamore Consulting Limited by the Kogi State Government from its IGR DSRA account”.
    One month after, on 24th August, 2017, the sum of N287, 975,645.87 (Two Hundred and Eight-Seven Million, Nine Hundred and Seventy-Five Thousand, Six Hundred and Forty-Five Naira, Eighty-Seven Kobo) was paid again into Sycamore Consulting Limited by the Kogi State Government from its IGR DSRA account”

    “On 25th September, 2017, the sum of N258, 000,000 (Two Hundred and Fifty-Eight Million Naira) was paid into Sycamore consulting Limited by the Kogi State Government from its IGR DSRA account.
    Finally on 23rd November, 2017, the sum of N200, 000,000 (Two Hundred Million Naira) was paid into Sycamore Consulting Limited by the Kogi State Government from its IGR DSRA account”.

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