PROBE: El-Rufai approaches court to quash Kaduna House of Assembly Report

This was to challenge the lawmakers’ plan to probe his eight-year administration which they claimed siphoned ₦432bn, leaving the state with huge debt liabilities.

El-Rufai filed a fundamental rights enforcement suit at the Kaduna division of the Federal High Court on Wednesday.

The suit, filed by the ex-governor’s lawyer Abdulhakeem Mustapha, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, challenged the report of the Kaduna Assembly Committee which indicted El-Rufai for alleged corruption.

READ ALSO: Kaduna assembly claims ex-governor El-Rufai siphoned N423bn

In the suit, El-Rufai asked the court to declare the report of the Assembly null and void because El-Riufai was not given fair hearing by the committee that authored the report.

Joined in the suit as respondents are the Kaduna State House of Assembly and  the state attorney general.

Earlier in June, the ad hoc committee set up by the state Assembly to investigate all finances, loans and contracts awarded under the El-Rufai administration submitted its report to the House.

The chairman of the ad hoc committee, Henry Zacharia, said most of the loans obtained under the El-Rufai’s administration were not used for the purpose for which they were obtained, while in some cases, due process was not followed in securing the loans.

The Speaker of the Assembly, Yusuf Liman, also said that a total ₦423 billion was allegedly siphoned by the El-Rufai’s administration leaving the state with huge liabilities.

The committee, therefore, recommended the investigation and prosecution of El-Rufai, and some members of his cabinet by security and anti-corruption agencies for alleged abuse of office, diversion of public funds and money laundering.

The committee also recommended the immediate suspension of the commissioner of finance, Shizer Badda, who also served in the same capacity under the El-Rufai’s administration.

El-Rufai’s spokesman, Muyiwa Adekeye, affirmed the integrity of El-Rufai’s government and dismissed as “scandalous”, the claims by the committee.

He said, “Malam Nasir El-Rufai is immensely proud of his record of governance and the legacy he left in Kaduna State. This record of consistently high performance in public and private office cannot be altered by any malicious effort to use the auspices of a state legislature for defamation and undeserved smears.

“Many of the officials who served in the El-Rufai government appeared before the ad-hoc committee because of their confidence in the quality of their service and the rectitude which they served Kaduna State. They were under no illusion that they were participating in a fair process. It was obvious that the ad hoc committee was merely going through the motions of an inquiry just to give some gloss to predetermined conclusions.

“It is sad to see such a shameful departure from any notion of decency and fairness by a state legislature. We dismiss with contempt the claims being peddled in connection with the report.

“Malam El-Rufai wishes to assure discerning Nigerians that he has served Kaduna State with integrity and to the best of his capacity, assisted by a hardworking and patriotic team. He complied with all extant laws in all his activities while he was the governor. This jaundiced probe should be disregarded as the politically motivated hatchet job it is.”

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