Governor of Edo State during the aborted Third Republic, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, yesterday, described the allegation of embezzlement of campaign funds levelled against Governor Rabiu Kwankwaso of Kano State by President Goodluck Jonathan as ridiculous.
Information Nigeria reports that the president had at a rally organized by the Peoples Democratic Party to officially receive ex-Kano Governor, Malam Ibrahim Shekarau to the ruling party on Tuesday, accused Kwankwaso of attempting to scuttle his presidential bid in 2011 by pocketing the money provided by his presidential campaign team for delegates from Kano State, during the party’s primaries in Abuja.
This, Jonathan alleged, was aimed at unsettling the delegates so they could vote for another aspirant, who he did not name.
But Oyegun said that rather than accuse the governor of embezzlement of campaign funds, President Jonathan ought to have first ordered the arrest of those who were involved in the pension fund saga and the alleged missing $20 billion from the Federation Account.
Speaking with Vanguard, Oyegun said: “In politics, when you want to hang somebody, you accuse him of stealing money. But first the President should tell us who stole our $20 billion and they should ensure that all those who stole pension funds are arrested and prosecuted.
“Campaign funds are not public funds. It is a case of misplaced priority. It looks like the President is more concerned with campaign funds than with public funds. We had been told how many kilometres of road $20 billion can tar, let him punish those who are stealing public funds before talking about private campaign funds. The President’s outburst is ridiculous”, Oyegun insisted.
On the resurgence of Boko Haram activities in the North by the Boko Haram sect, the running mate to Shekarau in the 2011 presidential elections said: “There is no way to describe what is going on in the name of Boko Haram in this country. The Muslims are supposed to be extreme Muslims, here they are kidnapping Muslim children, what part of their struggle for God can justify such a dastardly act.
“Secondly, how can those children be abducted and the kidnappers are not be apprehended by security forces? How many pick up vans were required to transport them? How was it that those who abducted the kids travelled to the schools, fired shots, and abducted them, yet we did not hear of any response from any of the security agencies?
“I wonder how safe we are in this country. I am really sad for this country, none of us is safe in this country”, he said.