RUNNING NEWS ON IDENTITY CARD / SAGEM / AFOLABI & CO. CORRUPTION SAGA

No Comments » May 10th, 2004 posted by // Categories: Important Documents



RUNNING NEWS ON IDENTITY CARD / SAGEM / AFOLABI & CO.
CORRUPTION SAGA

 

P.M. News (Lagos)
NEWS
May 10, 2004

 
Posted to the web May 10, 2004

Former Internal Affairs Minister and former deputy governor of old Oyo State,
Chief Sunday Afolabi, is dead.

Chief Afolabi died in the early hours of today (5a.m.) in Manchester, England.

According to a statement signed by the Governor of Osun State, Prince Olagunsoye
Oyinlola, the former minister died at a time his friends and associates thought
he had recovered from a protracted illness.

The governor’s statement reads in part: “With heavy heart, but with total
submission to the wish of God, on behalf of the people and government of Osun
State, I wish to announce the passing away of former Internal Affairs Minister,
Chief Sunday Afolabi, who died in the early hours of today in Manchester,
England, where he was receiving treatment.” Prince Oyinlola described his death
as “a rude shock,” especially when a delegation sent to wish him quick recovery
came back a few weeks ago hinting that he was on the path of recovery. In fact
we had started preparing to receive him when the sad news of his death hit us”.

The Osun governor stated that the state would miss his charismatic leadership
and deep thought.

The deceased Internal Affairs Minister was on 29 December, 2003 formally charged
to an Abuja High Court along with five others for fraud, involving $214 million
National Identity Card.

The Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) accused the late minister of
receiving $330,000 from a representative of SAGEM S. A. of France, the
contractors handling the National ID Card project.

Others charged along with him were former Minister of Labour and Productivity,
Alhaji Hussein Akwanga, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Internal Affairs, Ms
Turi Akerele, former National Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP),
Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo; former Minister of State for Internal Affairs, Dr.
Mohammed Shata and SAGEM S. A. representative in Nigeria, Mr. Niyi Adelakun.

Afolabi, shortly after his arraignment declared his innocence, saying he would
be vindicated at the end of the trial.

S. M. Afolabi, 1924-2004

By

Olu Ojewale

Monday, May 17, 2004

Newswatch

Former internal affairs minister dies in a UK hospital of undisclosed illness

He would have loved to leave the stage with his reputation still intact. But
Sunday Michael Afolabi, former minister of internal affairs and a member of the
ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, died in a Manchester hospital, May 10, 43
days to his 70th birthday, without being absolved in the two major events that
had rocked the nation: the murder of Bola Ige, former justice minister, December
23, 2001 and the national identity card $241 million scam.

Ige was Afolabi’s sworn enemy. Their rivalry dates back to 1982 when Ige was
governor of old Oyo State and Afolabi, his deputy. They fell out over the
conduct of primaries for the 1983 general elections. Afolabi resigned from the
UPN and joined the ruling party, National Party of Nigeria,NPN. He helped the
party to wrest the governorship from Ige. Victor Olunloyo of the NPN won. For
delivering old Oyo State to NPN, Afolabi was made minister of state for
education.

When Ige, as a member of Alliance for Democracy, AD, and a minister in the PDP
government criticised the ruling party, it incensed Afolabi. He told Ige that he
was being asked to “come and eat” and should therefore stop “biting the fingers
that fed him.” The controversy that ensued showed that the two Osun State-born
politicians had still not made up. So, Ige’s murder was attributed to a power
tussle between him and Afolabi over the control of Osun State. Many members of
AD called for the arrest of Afolabi over the murder. But the killing has never
been linked to him.

Afolabi is facing prosecution with four others in the alleged $241 million
national identity card scam. The Independent Corrupt Practices Commission, ICPC,
detained five people for about a month in Abuja before taking them to court.
Afolabi pleaded not guilty to 16-count charges brought against him December 30,
last year. He was alleged to have collected $345,600 as gratification from one
Niji Adelagun, a representative of Sagem SA, the company that won the identity
card contract. Justice Ibrahim Bwala Bukar, granted him bail. The others accused
of receiving various sums of money from Adelagun and arraigned with Afolabi were
Hussaini Akwanga, former minister of labour and productivity, Mohammed Shata,
former minister of state for internal affairs; Okwesilieze Nwodo, former
national secretary of PDP and Turie Akerele, former solicitor-general.

Afolabi was one of the leading politicians of Osun State. He was widely revered
and the current PDP administrations in the five south-western states were
attributed to his strategic efforts.

Adolphus Wabara, Senate president attributed the success of the ruling party in
the south-west to his political acumen. Richard Akinjide, former justice
minister, in a tribute to Afolabi said: “It is a very great loss for Nigeria in
general and Osun in particular. He was very strategic in ensuring that Victor
Olunloyo won the gubernatorial election in 1983

Opt In Image
Send Me Free Email Updates

(enter your email address below)

Leave a Reply

*

Home | About | Contact | Login