There are reports that President Buhari may sack his Interior Minister, Lt. Gen. Abdurahman Danbazau, over his alleged indictment on the Defence Equipment Procurement in the Nigerian Armed Forces report.
Nigerian Pilot reports that the president was not happy with the security briefs he had received so far on the report and is willing to sacrifice the embattled minister to ensure that Nigeria is free of corruption.
In the report, the committee, which was set up by Mr. President to probe the procurement of arms, ammunition and equipment in the military from 2007 to 2015, reveals that several top retired army officers were indicted and some were already scheming to suppress the content of the report.
Sources reveal that among former army chiefs and other top officers of the Nigerian Army, there were attempts to doctor the report but the panel members resisted.
It is alleged that Dambazau who served as the Chief of Army Staff to late President Umaru Yar’Adua, between 2008 and 2010, was particularly trying to suppress the content of the report.
The report which has been as “damning” and “explosive,” shows some retired top army officers indicted. They include the present Minister of Interior, Abdurahman Bello Dambazau; the immediate past Chief of Army Staff, Kenneth Minimah, and his predecessor, Azubuike Ihejirika.
The committee in its report uncovered a whole lot of things, including the outright stealing of funds meant for equipment for the army, inflation of contracts, diversion of money for soldiers’ welfare, money for the rehabilitation of barracks and military facilities and many other corrupt practices.
The Presidential Committee on Defence Equipment Procurement in the Nigerian Armed Forces was specifically put together to investigate allegations of non- adherence to correct equipment procurement procedures and the exclusion of relevant logistics branches from arms procurement under past administrations, which very often resulted in the acquisition of sub- standard and unserviceable equipment.
The investigative committee’s mandate was to identify irregularities and make recommendations for streamlining the procurement process in the armed forces.
The committee is expected to conclude its task and submit its report and findings to President Muhammadu Buhari in the next few weeks.
Recall that in March 2016, the committee, predominantly made up of retired military officers, had summoned 292 retired and serving top army officers, including Generals Dambazau, Ihejirika and Minimah. Last August, the president also directed the National Security Adviser, Mohammed Mongonu, to set up a 13-member investigative committee on the procurement of hardware and munitions in the Armed Forces from 2007.