The plot to impeach the Adamawa State Governor, Murtala Nyako, took a dramatic twist on Thursday, as he has cried out that forces behind the plot have frozen the state government’s accounts.
He said this in a telephone interview with one of our correspondents in Abuja, on Thursday.
Nyako, who spoke through his Director of Press and Public Affairs, Ahmad Sajoh, also said he had yet to receive a copy of the impeachment notice.
He said, “They have frozen all our accounts today; no reason has been given for the action. We were not served any notice and nobody has told us why our accounts were frozen.
“We only heard from unofficial sources that our accounts were frozen based on instructions from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
“We have not been told for what offence. This is a deliberate ploy to pit the people of the state against the government because they know that by freezing our accounts, we cannot pay June salaries.
“You can only imagine the kind of suffering our people will go through during this Ramadan which is barely two weeks away.”
Repeated calls to the mobile telephone number of the Head of Media and Publicity of the EFCC, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren, did not connect.
However, a highly placed official of the commission who spoke in confidence confirmed that the commission gave the directive to freeze the accounts.
He said “It is true that the leadership of the EFCC issued the directive that the bank accounts of the Adamawa State government be frozen, which is the much I can say.”
The legislators are also refusing to back down on threats to go ahead with the impeachment of the governor and his deputy, Mr. Bala Ngilari.
This is even as the Clerk of the House could not deliver the impeachment notice on the governor for a second day running.
It was learnt that security officials prevented even members of staff of the Government House from gaining entry into the premises when they showed up for work on Thursday.
A member of the Adamawa State House of Assembly, Mr. Adamu Kamale, told one of our correspondents, in a telephone interview that the house was resolute in the pursuit of this objective.
He said majority of the members of the state House of Assembly were determined to correct the ills which they claimed had stifled the development of the state.
Asked why the legislators waited this long to act, Kamale said, “There is no time factor in the constitution that says if a governor commits an offence in 2011 we cannot ask him at this material time.
“The issue is whether they are genuine. I want us to redirect our energies to whether these allegations are genuine and if they are genuine, you can see the level of abuse of office that has taken place in Adamawa State.
“I think we need to redirect our energies for the benefit of Nigeria as a whole and Adamawa State in particular. There is no part of our law that says if a person commits an offence at a particular time and after some time he will be forgiven or it will just be swept under the carpet.”
He explained that he and his colleagues invited officials of the state government who were allegedly directly involved in the looting.
“Some have confirmed in their statements, that these allegations were genuine because some admitted that they could not find the money that had been given to them.
“In fact, some were even saying that most of their sub-heads were used, the point is that let us stick to the provisions of the constitution.”
He insisted that each member of the House was elected by his constituency to represent them as such; the present cause of action was influenced by the need to protect the interest of the people.
Kamale said, “What the House did is in the interest of the people of Adamawa State. And we believe every other person should do his to work towards ensuring that those who committed these offences are made to answer for them.
“If you notice, the governor has not appeared before the House. It is not the business of the House to invite the governor, what the constitution says is that if there are impeachable offences committed we can serve him with the notice.”
Responding to allegations that House members were induced by forces outside the state, the legislator said, “That is the figment of the imagination of those who are making such allegation.
“We have never (been induced), as far as we are concerned. We are elected by our various constituencies in Adamawa State to represent them and collectively we have agreed and are determined to correct what is wrong.”
Meanwhile, a former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, and some indigenes of Adamawa State had begun moves aimed at saving Nyako and his deputy from impeachment.
Nyako and the aggrieved legislators were in Abuja on Thursday night, and were waiting for Atiku as of the time of filling this report, for crucial meetings.
Investigations by one of our correspondents showed that one of the meetings was being called by some senators led by Senator Aishat Alhassan from Taraba State.
It was also gathered that the second meeting was to be hosted by some governors from the northern region, majority of who were said to be members of the APC.
Some of the angry legislators were said to have insisted that they would not sit on the table until the arrival of Atiku.
Atiku’s plane was being expected to touch down in Abuja by 8pm from South Africa where he attended the inauguration of the country’s parliament.