Malam Mohammed Musa Bello, the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), at the weekend fired the management of the Abuja Investments Company Limited (AICL) embroiled in a probe by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for stealing and corrupt practices.
FCTA said the management of AICL failed to make remittances in the last 10 years from any of its subsidiaries, including Abuja Markets Management Limited (AMML), Abuja Urban Transport Limited, Abuja Leasing Company (ALC) and Abuja Property Development Company (APDC).
The minister sealed the fate of the Group Managing Director, Dr Musa Ahmed Musa, who was first asked to embark on a suspension last month.
Other affected management staff included: Abdulsalam A. Salisu (Senior Vice President/Ag. GMD);Sani Yakubu (Senior Vice President, Business Development);Showole Wasiu Abiodun (Senior Vice President, Equity Management);Ibrahim Aliyu (Senior Vice President, Asset Management); Ibezim Francisca (Senior Vice President, Legal); Owraigbo Japhat A (Senior Vice President, F&T); Mr. Abbas Yakubu Muhammed (Vice President, Asset Management) and Waziri Asabe Z. (Vice President Human Resources and Administration).
A seven-man interim management team headed by Dr. Bashir Isyaku was installed to oversee the affairs of the company pending the outcome of the EFCC investigation.
While expressing concern with the scale of the graft, the minister said that as owners and partners of AICL, the action taken by FCTA was imperative to protect its investment and ensure the company’s was heading in the right course.
He lamented that internal auditing and the EFCC reports had created corporate governance issues that could impact negatively on FCTA’s investments.
He added the administration could no longer turn a blind eye to the development, hence the immediate changes.
“I got a report with respect to the investigation been carried out on this company and the key management staff. As shareholders, we feel very concerned because this is our number one investment in the FCTA, and it is an investment that has been very profitable in the past, even though not so profitable in the immediate past. We guard our stakes jealously and we expect better returns,’’ Bello said.
The minister stressed that the administration had cause to effect due diligence and investigations, given the relationship between AICL and the subsidiaries, adding it resolved to suspend the AICL management staff when the administration received a litany of allegations bothering on corruption in addition to the bad working relations between the company and heads of subsidiaries.
He charged the new management to jealously guard to guard its investment in the subsidiary, associate and affiliate companies and track every kobo in their portfolio, “either in quoted shares or unquoted shares because that is what we expect as shareholders.”