By Hamza Al-Mustapha
“When General Abdulsalami came to power, he exhibited an accumulated and accentuated thirst for money. I stumbled on some documents and video cassettes even while in retirement.
“There was the case of $40 million contributed by multinationals for General Sani Abacha’s transmutation to civilian president. I gave the cassette of his disclosure to help him clean the system not knowing that he would use it to clean me out of the system because three days later I was arrested. I urge the commission to investigate this money contributed by multinational towards Abacha’s self-succession.
“There was also the case of Engineer Buba Galadima, Director of NMA whom General Abdulsalami Abubakar directed to release N5 billion from the NMA to the minister through Chief Hope Ozodinma. But Galadima refused saying it was beyond his power to do so. That same afternoon, a lorry load of soldiers invaded his house managed him and took him to an unknown destination. He was ordered to put in his letter of resignation so as to look as if he resigned voluntarily but he refused and asked General Abubakar to fire him. He was fired and he was given two hours to vacate his official quarters.
“The N5 billion was to be shared like this: “1.35 to be given to the minister, Chief Hope would be given N265 million and $18 million would be given to General Abubakar. I have documents to prove this (He then tendered the documents).
“There is the issue of the printing of new naira denominations, of 100, 200 and 500. I shared Mustapha’s opinions on this which he explained in his testimony that it was a booby trap for President Olusegun Obasanjo to fail. I have 13 documents to prove this which I shall tender, before this commission.
“When General Abacha was alive the idea of the printing of new naira denominations was mooted. Three companies bided for the contract – J.B. of Munich; Thomas & Co. Of London, and Bodous of Germany. They all submitted their quotations. They all agreed on $30 per one thousand pieces but General Abacha said it was too much. The agreement was not sealed before his death. When General Abdulsalami came on board, he said it should be printed at $45 per thousand. G & D was given the contract of printing and here was the company reputed for tax evasion. The company has offices in Germany, Greece, Spain, Belgium, Argentina and other places, but only has a liaison office in Nigeria. The company evaded tax to the tune of 2 million Dutch marks in Germany. This is the same company given the job to print the money I commenced investigations into the activities of this company but General Abubakar ordered me to stop it. All these were known to him.
“The NTA in its news at 7 and 9 p.m. on January 11, 2001 reported that a container load of fake naira notes was discovered in Jos and Maiduguri. This is what I am talking about.
“During Abdulsalami’s time, our soldiers in ECOMOG were not treated well at all. General Victor Malu then ECOMOG Commander once had cause to complain of adulterated fuel sent to them. When the contract for the supply of food to our soldiers was changed, it was given to one lady, I will mention her name later.
When General Abacha was alive 45 dollars was approved a day for each of our soldiers but when Gen. Abubakar came to power he increased it. But instead of giving them the money, they were given the old rate, where is the balance?
“There is the issue of parting gift to each PRC member. N1 million was agreed as parting gift for each PRC member or 500,000 dollars. I inquired from two PRC members later differently. I asked them jokingly that I learnt you were all given ½ a million dollars as parting gift. Where is my own share now? But they told me it was only 50,000 dollars. So what happened to the remaining 450,000 dollars per each PRC member times the total PRC members?
Before General Abacha died, he left a foreign reserve of 9.7 billion dollars. There are papers to show this. But Abubakar claimed that only 7.17 billion dollars was left in the reserve what happened to the balance? This reserve that Abacha accumulated in five years, Abdulsalami depleted if in nine months.
“Eagle Square here in Abuja was being renovated yearly when General Oseni was FCT Minister. Consultants were appointed for the renovation at N230 million. But General Abdulsalami rejected this and opted for upward review of N2.3 billion as against N230m.
“Also through 59 million dollars he siphoned from government coffers he bought a house in London at 5 million pounds renovated it at 1 million pounds.
“Before General Abacha died he approved 66 million Dutch marks for the maintenance of Alpha jets and other aircraft. When Abubakar took over he wrote another memo for the sum of 44,275,000 dollars for the same maintenance. I would have wished he was here to cross check if this signature on these documents were his.
“There was also another memo from the CGS dated March 17 1999 at the injury time of the administration. There was request for the purchase of boats at 45 million dollars, purchase of amphibious plane at 21,747,660 dollars; and 5,000 rain coats jacket to cost 14,500,00 dollars. The normal cost of one rain coat to pocket were from rain is 45 dollar per piece and the total cost for the 5,000 rain coats should be 2,9000 dollars. It was signed by General Abdulsalami Abubakar to be purchased on ECOMOG issue, apart from the naval personnel that used to transport the food items, it was later given to merchant ships.
“There is the issue of Engineer Ibrahim Ali, MD of NPA. General Abubakar called him one day and told him since General Abacha did not give you free hand to do your duties, bring your quotation and I will give you the wherewithal to execute it. He brought it to Abdulsalami. He met Alhaji Gidado Idris, former Secretary to the Federation there. Abdulsalami approved it for execution but when Ali left Abdulsalami ordered Gidado Idris to fire Ali when Gidado wanted to refuse, he told him that if he didn’t do it somebody else would do it and that was how he was fired.