By Abdulaziz Abdulaziz
In awarding N3.6 billion contract to own firm, Bauchi governor duplicates purchases
ICPC seizes multi-million naira landed property from Bauchi governor
The name of Bauchi state governor, Bala Mohammed, has been taken off the list of directors and shareholders of a company which got a controversial N3.6 billion vehicle supply contract in a fraudulent filing which backdated processes, PREMIUM TIMES investigation shows.
This newspaper first exposed Mr Mohammed’s involvement with Adda Nigeria Limited, a company he co-owns with a close friend of his, Abdullahi Yari, in a series of stories published in February.
The stories caused ripples and condemnation, with lawyers and activists questioning legality and morality of the action, which contravenes Nigerian laws.
A spokesperson for Mr Mohammed at the time denied any wrongdoing and a government statement later claimed the Bauchi governor was not the Bala Mohammed Abdulkadir listed as director and shareholder of the company.
Months of fresh investigations and search at the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), the government agency responsible for licensing and regulating companies in Nigeria, reveal a surreptitious operation leading to the removal of Mr Mohammed’s name from the company.
Prior to his election as governor last year, Mr Mohammed was standing trial for alleged corrupt activities during his stay as the minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
The anti-corruption agency, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission(EFCC), first filed 6-count charges against Mr Mohammed on October 10, 2017. He was accused of abuse of office and land racketeering.
In April 2019, weeks after his election as governor, the agency slammed an amended charge on Mr Mohammed before the FCT High Court, accusing him, among other things, of receiving a house valued at N550 million in gratification.
He was also accused of failing to disclose the ownership of some of his properties.
Lawyer Confirms Backdated Filing
The lawyer who handled the filing for Adda Nigeria Limited, Bala Abdullahi, told PREMIUM TIMES on Saturday that the filing was done this year.
“I did not change the names. I only filed for them,” he said.
Reminded that the filing was done this year although the documents were backdated, the lawyer confirmed that he filed the documents this year.
On being reminded the documents carried a retrospective date, Mr Abdullahi said “I am not disputing that.”
CAC won’t comment
The spokesperson for the CAC, Laraba Shuaibu, said she would not comment on the issue when contacted by PREMIUM TIMES.
“Honestly, I don’t know what you are talking about,” she told our reporter.
When the reporter requested that she listen to the explanation for her response, Mrs Shuaibu remained unyielding.
“Even if you explain to me on the phone, since I have not seen the file, the fact of the matter is not before me, I will not be in a position to comment on it.”