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How N5bn was shared among Kwara lawmakers, top govt officials —EFCC

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on friday said it has uncovered how 24 ex-lawmakers at the Kwara House of Assembly, former Commissioner for Finance, Ademola Banu, and some companies allegedly swindled the state of about N5bn.

Head of media and publicity of the Commission, Mr Wilson Uwujaren, made known in a statement made available to Newsmen in Ilorin on Friday.

According to him, the money belongs to the Kwara State Internal Revenue Service between 2015 and 2019.

Uwujaren said the immediate past chairman of KWIRS, Prof. Muritala Awodu; former member of the Kwara State House of Assembly, Moshood Bakare; and some staff of KWIRS are presently being interrogated by the Commission.

“It was discovered during investigations that about five companies linked to highly placed politicians in Kwara State benefited about N4bn from the money, without any valid contractual agreement with the state government.

“Other beneficiaries of the money include all the former 24 members of the Kwara House of Assembly, including the Speaker, Dr. Ali Ahmad; former Commissioner for Finance, Ademola Banu; ex-Kwara State Accountant-General, Ishola Sulyman; and permanent secretaries, among others,” Uwujaren said.

Uwujaren said that a staff of KWIRS, while being interrogated by EFCC operatives, said the House of Assembly members were collecting N4m monthly for public relations, which they shared among themselves.

According to him, the former Kwara State Commissioner for Finance, Ademola Banu, was collecting N5m monthly without working for it.

“In fact, Mr. Banu collected it in cash, I did take it to his house. If we didn’t give him, he won’t approve anything we took to him.”

Uwujaren said the Chairman, House Committee on appropriation and finance said they usually sent the money into the account of his personal assistant who will then withdraw the money and give it to him.

He said the chairman will thereafter hand it over to the Speaker, Dr Ali Ahmad, who will later share it to all the honorable members.

He said further, “Some honourable members collected the money in cash, while some insisted that the money should be transferred into their accounts.”

Uwujaren said it was further discovered that a personal assistant to the former Governor of Kwara, Rafiu Olasile, allegedly received the sum of N10m from one of the aides to ex-chairman of House Committee on Appropriation and Finance.

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