Agroup under the aegis of Forum for Transparency and Accountability in Governance has called on President Bola Tinubu not to succumb to pressures by politicians with pending corruption cases with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in appointing people for ministerial positions.
The group emphasised that the former governors of Kaduna and Kano, Nasir El-Rufai and Abdullahi Ganduje, should be kept at arm’s length and be isolated from the corridor of power.
The group made the call against the backdrop of the much-expected list of ministerial nominees by the 10th Senate. Mr Tinubu has a statutory period of 60 days to make the list available to the upper legislative chamber for screening.
The transparency group, in a statement jointly signed by its convener, Bala Mustapha, secretary general Nouel Malama and director of publicity, Nafisa Jika, respectively maintained that Mr Tinubu should tread with caution and not appoint politicians with questionable character into his cabinet.
It recalled that Mr El-Rufai is standing trial for allegedly embezzling N32 billion in revenue from sales of federal government houses between 2005 and 2007 when he was the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory.
The forum maintained that the prosecution of Mr El-Rufai was progressing at the Federal High Court until he became governor of Kaduna State in May 2015, when the immunity of office halted it, insisting that the anti-graft agency ought to have resumed his prosecution after his eight-year tenure.
The statement read: “Any government that prides itself on probity and accountability should not be seen to patronise the likes of the former governor of Kaduna State. It’s in the public domain that Malam Nasir El-Rufai is facing prosecution of N32 billion in Court.
“Also, the former governor of Kano State, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, is facing rejection over his dirty past involving dollar bribes and what is good for Ganduje should be good for El-Rufai. We hope that President Tinubu will come out clean on El-Rufai issue, while we hope that he should not allow Nigerians to hit the streets before doing the right thing,” the group stated.
The group further called on EFCC and other anti-graft agencies to prosecute former and incumbent public officers with pending cases.