The Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, has called on the appropriate authorities to urgently institute a probe to unravel those he said may be hidden faces behind the new ownership structure of multi billion naira telecoms giant, Etisalat (now 9mobile) Nigeria as well as Keystone Bank.
In a statement issued in Abuja on Wednesday and signed by his Special Assistant on Public Communication, Mr. Phrank Shaibu, the former vice president said such a probe was necessary in view of reports that members of President Muhammadu Buhari’s family now own substantial shares in Etisalat (9mobile) Nigeria which has an estimated $2b (about N727b at 360 per dollar) of its estimated $20b global net worth.
Atiku also expressed shock at reports from what he described as unimpeachable sources that the first family now plays big in the nation’s financial sector after acquiring mouthwatering shares in Keystone Bank with total assets of $1.916b (equivalent to N307.5b) as well as purchasing about N3b worth of shares in the new Pakistani Islamic Bank.
He said, “I know that last week was turbulent for President Buhari and I apologise for adding to his woes, but as he is insistent on the myth that he is spotless and anti-corrupt, if this is found to be true, this scandal would break every rule of corporate and public governance, since this will be the first time members of the first family will be openly involved in a once-in-a-lifetime deal that would make them all richer beyond their wildest dreams.”
Atiku added that the accusation was coming amidst reported allegations in the media that the All Progressives Congress-led Federal Government plans to use billions of naira from the Anchor Borrowers Programme allocated by the Central Bank of Nigeria for farmers, using imaginary donations from 12 million farmers as a façade.
The presidential candidate of the PDP advised President Buhari to shun the use of state resources and machinery for the upcoming 2019 presidential poll.
Specifically, Atiku said no farmer contributed any N1.7b for Buhari’s re-election campaign, warning that the APC’s decision to use monies meant for farmers “to run his campaign is not tidy at all.”