In-Depth: Maina: Nigeria Police deny involvement in pension fraud

The House of Representatives has commenced its independent investigation into circumstances surrounding the reinstatement and promotion of Abdulrasheed Maina, a former Chairman of the Presidential Pension Reform Task Force, into the federal civil service of Nigeria.

The ad-hoc committee conducting the probe is headed by the member representing, Dala federal constituency of Kano State, Madaki Ali.

In their submission, the Nigeria Police claimed not to have played “any role in the pensions’ reform task team, though the team was to unravel issues in the police pensions.”

A Deputy Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Valentine Tochukwu, who represented the IGP, Mr. Ibrahim Idris, claimed that the police were still searching for Maina to administer a pending arrest warrant on him.

The Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission also washed its hands of Maina’s case.

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“By the terms of reference of the committee, they do not fall within our mandate,” the Acting Chairman of the commission, Mr. Bako Abdullahi, told the committee.

*** Maina gives condition to appear before Reps panel

The former chairman of the Pension Reform Task Team (PRTT), Abdulrasheed Maina has listed conditions for his personal appearance before the House of Representatives panel investigating his reinstatement into the civil service.

Speaking through his counsel Mohammed Sani Katu yesterday, Maina pleaded with the lawmakers to ensure that no security agency would arrest or harass him before he could appear to give more details on the matter.

“We ask that you give Maina protection so that no security agency will interfere or arrest him so that he’ll appear in person. If that is done, we can assure you that Maina will come. We want you to give Maina a cover to appear.”

Katu said Maina was not properly sacked from the civil service because even before the purported dismissal, the ex-pension chief had gone to court to challenge the action.

“On the issue of his disappearance, he had to disappear because there was so much threats to his life. On the issue of his dismissal from service, which came up in 2013, we have documents to say here that even after he was allegedly sacked, he still wrote letters to the then president, finance minister, and the rest, which they acted on.

“I can tell you that about 23 files were sent to Maina even as at last few months to treat in his capacity as acting director, even after the purported dismissal.

“Another matter was that whether those that sacked him had powers to do so. When his lawyers realized that there was a process of sacking him, they wrote a letter to the commission that he filed a case in court against that. His letter wasn’t complied with,” the lawyer said.

Barrister Katu said Maina was reinstated on grade level 16 via a letter dated 28th September, 2017 from the interior ministry signed by one Dr Aki Attahiru.

Asked if Maina still receives salary, Katu answered in the affirmative and promised to provide documents to that effect.

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