The embattled former Chairman of the Presidential Pension Reform Team (PPRT), Abdurasheed Maina, has challenged the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to an open debate over the allegations penciled against him.
He insisted that he was innocent of the N2.1 billion alleged fraud.
Maina, who spoke through his lawyer, Sani Katu, insisted that he did not steal N2.1 billion from the pension fund as alleged but that the Federal Government owed him a large sum of money.
The former PRTT boss, therefore, challenged the anti-graft agency to an open panel of investigation where he would reveal the unknown to Nigerians.
He said: “In 2011, we stopped the stealing of N300 million daily from police pensions. Also, in 2011, we stopped the stealing of N1.04 billion monthly from police pension allocations. Same 2011, we were able to stop the yearly stealing of N52.5 billion at the head of service pension.
“It would interest you to know that between 2011 and 2012, the PRTT recovered cash and asset worth N1.63 trillion which has been with the EFCC.
“Nigerians are not stupid and cannot be deceived. They want to take our attention away from all these recoveries because they have repeatedly failed to account for them.
Our attention cannot be diverted away from about N4 trillion to a mere N2.1 billion, which is less of all the recoveries.
“Let’s meet at an open panel of investigation if the EFCC is truly straightforward. We urge the government to appoint an independent panel of investigation and see who will run out of Nigeria.
Maina also accused a prominent Lagos lawyer of buying one of the property seized from pension fraudsters.
In another development, an ad-hoc committee of the House of Representatives has summoned the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, to appear before it in connection with the circumstances that led to the reinstatement of the former Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Pension Reforms, Maina, as a director in the Ministry of Interior.
Among the key personalities to also appear before the committee led by Mr. Ali Madaki were the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Ibrahim Idris; Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Mrs. Winifred Oyo-Ita; Finance Minister, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun and the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
They are billed to appear before the lawmakers starting from Wednesday, November 23 and Thursday, November 24, 2017 to shed more light on Maina’s scandalous reinstatement.