The Human Environment and Development Agenda, (HEDA Resource Centre ) and the Civil Society Network Against Corruption, (CSNAC) have challenged the appointment of Senator Aliyu Matagarakarda Wammakko as the Senate Committee Vice Chairman on Financial Crimes.
The foremost anti-corruption coalition asked the National Assembly to immediately replace Wamakko with a credible Senator.
The groups call for the immediate replacement of Senator Wammakko adding that if this is not done, it leaves the conclusion that the Senate lacks credible individuals that can handle such a sensitive position.
“We are deeply concerned that a Senator who shoulders a heavy load of corruption charges has been appointed to lead the National Assembly on issues pertaining to corruption and other financial crimes. This is ridiculous. It is unacceptable” the statement signed by HEDA and CSNAC stated in a release signed on their behalf by Mr Olanrewaju Suraju
HEDA and CSNAC said the selection of Senator Wammakko was an indication that the National Assembly appears not to consider credibility as an important weapon in any meaningful fight against corruption or that the Senate Committee on Financial Crimes is considered a paper tiger established not to fight corruption but to create perks and privileges of office for certain individuals.
The coalition said “How do the National Assembly reconcile the contradiction that a man indicted for serious financial crimes has been asked to lead the National Assembly in the anti corruption drive? This certainly mocks the lawmakers and portrays the country in extreme bad light.”
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, had launched investigation into alleged theft of N15 billion naira belonging to the Sokoto State Government.
Wamakko ruled Sokoto from 2007 to 2015 after which he was elected Senator representing Sokoto North in the National Assembly. He won relection in 2019
Wamakko is being investigated for alleged diversion of N15 billion Sokoto State funds
A group, Movement for the Liberation and Emancipation of Sokoto State, had accused Senator Wamakko of alleged theft and money laundering.
Surajo Saidu and Mudassir Umar Alhassan who are Chairman and Secretary of the group wrote a petition dated 10th August, 2015.
The group said Senator Wamakko who served as governor of Sokoto State from 2007 to 2015 converted funds meant for the development of the state into personal use.
EFCC officials claimed N1.5 billion cash deposit was traced into Senator Wamakko’s account.
The coalition said “How do the National Assembly reconcile the contradiction that a man facing serious financial crime charges has been asked to lead the National Assembly in the anti corruption drive and oversight function over the anti-corruption agency investigating the Senator? This certainly mocks the lawmakers and portrays the country in extreme bad light”