Staff of Corporate Affairs Commission, CAC, an entity of government responsible for the incorporation of Companies, and Non-governmental organisations under the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 1990 as amended has petitioned its Registrar-General, Alhaji Garba Abubakar over alleged N6,542,329,716. 90 fraud.
In a petition dated 5th March 2021 and which was addressed to the Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari was seeking the president’s intervention, saying the Registrar General’s involvement in authority stealing using his position has become unbearable given that the staff is being shortchanged as allowances and entitlements have been stopped.
CAC staff under the aegis of Amalgamated Union of Public Corporations, Civil Service Technical and Recreational Services Employees (AUPCTRE) authored the petition that hasn’t been clear if the presidency has started acting on it.
The staff in the petition also raised doubts on Alhaji Garba Abubakar’s assets declaration hence, they urged the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) to investigate his claims in the form submitted to it under the relevant provisions of CCB laws.
The petition was also submitted to the National Assembly, complaining that staff were being victimised and have been transferred from the headquarters to zonal offices for exposing the Registrar-General’s financial malfeasance.
According to the Union, the Registrar-General didn’t stop at transferring its members, but, some of their members have been penciled to be sacked from the Commission very soon, while they appealed for the presidency’s intervention.
The staff who have already been transferred from the headquarters and likely to be sacked includes Suwidi Sani Kabir transferred to Abeokuta, Didam Laraba Joel married woman transferred to Lokoja, Glen Tabak Altine also married woman transferred to Jos and Buba Yusuf Dauda transferred to Enugu, Ibrahim Musa I. Kirfi transferred to Yola. Bello Fanini transferred to P/Harcourt, Abdulkadir Y. Giade transferred to Akure, while Sadiq shehu transferred to Ilorin.
Others include Bivan Stephen transferred to Zamfara, Labaran Sunday transferred to Damaturu, Egbelo Perpetua Eneh to Kaduna, Baba Tanimu, Nasiru B. Dembo and Muhammad Sani Binji to Lagos, Rabe Mai’adua, Ibrahim Isa and Umar Farouk from Kaduna to Abakaliki, Abuja and Uyo respectively, while Doffi Atoshi to Calabar, Amina B. Mohammed (married woman) from Yola to Abuja, Mohammed Nainna to Umuahia, Haruna Mohammed to Awka, Abbas Abdullahi to Jalingo, Waziri Isa, and Abubakar Sarkin Fulani to Damaturu.
In the letter titled: ”The struggle of AUPCTRE against corrupt practices in public service with a special focus on CAC” was signed by the acting General Secretary, Musa Ukpo.
The unionists alleged that the Registrar-General has infiltrated the Union, and “illegally dissolved them as well as banned them from operating, adding that the transfer was to enable him to weaken them at all cost.”
In a copy of another petition which was addressed to the Chairman of Code of Conduct Bureau, the CAC union gave graphic details of funds paid out under questionable circumstances especially in disregard to public finance regulation, and asked the CCB to investigate RG’s assets as reflected in the asset declaration form and what he has now.
The Registrar-General, CAC, Alhaji Garba Abubakar was accused of abuse of power, financial impropriety, and alleged commercialization of promotion examination in the commission”, according to the petition which was signed by the acting Secretary-General, Musa Ukpo.
Explaining the details of how the Registrar carted away funds using companies of his vested interest, the Union said: “It has been discovered that the Registrar General of CAC, has used a front company called the Eminent Konsult of Centage Avenue, Ikeja, Lagos, to inflate consultancy fees for tax reconciliation on FCT Abuja Payee Tax Liability for 2018 and 2019 at an exorbitant amount of N43,072,046.67 million via PV no. 131817/2595 and PV no. 181818/2596 both dated 13th August 2020 respectively.
“There is an alleged financial impropriety with regards to the costly fees of training of board members to the tune of N63,769,5000 million. The payments were made to Major Academy Ltd of No. 22, Isyaku Avenue, off Liberia street, Kaduna State in two installments.
The first was on the 13th July 2020 with PV no. 111290/2206 where N31,023,000 million was paid while the other payment was made to the same company on the 14th July 2020 with PV no. 120368/2206 to the tune of N32,746,500 million.
“As against the provision of section 13 of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act, LFN 2004, there are serious cases of abuse of power, some of which include: Breach of section 40 of the Constitution, ILO Convention 154 (1981), 29 (1930), and sections 23-25 of Trade Union Act, LFN 2004.
“Unilateral decisions that affect staff welfare such as stagnation, alteration of promotion policies, refusal to pay staff promotion arrears of 2019 despite the availability of funds and budgetary provisions, stoppage of all staff loans schemes, including those of the cooperative societies, coercing of staff to forcefully resign their membership of the union and imposing on them the membership of another union of his choice, stoppage of union monthly deductions.”
It was alleged that the promotion examinations for 2019 and 2020 in the commission were commercialized. Vacancies were not declared in Human Resources and Finance departments in the appropriation year, yet he filled the vacancies with his favourites against the budgetary provision, thus a breach of the appropriation act.
In a related development, the Minister of Trade and Industry soiled his hands in the Commission contract by giving his son-in-law the cleaning services of CAC Jos, Ekiti, Ibadan, and others (Domade Services Nigeria Limited) thus unable to call the Registrar General to order.
Irked by the RG’s high-handedness, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) protested at the headquarters of the Corporate Affairs Commission in Maitama.
The protest generated gridlock as motorists passing through Transcorp Hilton to NEPA to Nicon junction were caught up in traffic.
The action of the NLC was in solidarity with its affiliate union, the Amalgamated Union of Public Corporations, Civil Service Technical and Recreational Services Employees, AUPCTRE, which had alleged wrongdoings by CAC’s Registrar-General, Alhaji Garba Abubakar.
Besides accusing the CAC boss of thwarting their promotions, AUPCTRE had also accused Abubakar of indulging in divide-and-rule tactics, arbitrary transfer of union leaders, transfer of married women out of places where their spouses live, intimidation of workers against engaging in union activities among many others.
Speaking at the protest ground, NLC President, Ayuba Waba alleged that the Commission’s Registrar General, Garba Abubakar stalled staff promotion and brought in environmental experts to fumigate the agency for N35 million in view of the Covid-19 pandemic, including contracting someone to paint the Zone 5 annex office for N30,246,979.63 million.
Among other allegations raised by NLC was that the Registrar General transferred married women who are staff out of the Commission.
Waba vowed that the protest which he said, will be for three consecutive days, would paralyse the activities of the Commission if their grievances were not addressed today.
The NLC boss alleged that the CAC’s Abubakar committed various anti-union offenses, ranging from corruption, illegal redeployment of married women out of the commission, stopping staff’s promotion arrears among others.
He alleged that Abubakar brought in environmental experts to fumigate the agency for N35 million in view of the COVID-19 pandemic, including contracting someone to paint the commission’s Zone 5 Abuja annex office for N30,246,979.63 million to Man-Mohal Global Service Limited.
Procurement of Server DL 560 GEN 1085FF for N87,307,670.31 was approved at the Commission’s tenders Board despite the fact that it is above the threshold of the Commission. It was quickly taken to the Ministerial approval after the Union raised alarm.
On his part, AUPCTRE branch chairman, Comrade Ibrahim Kirfi, alleged that the CAC boss ignored series of actions is carried out with a view to averting the development.
According to him, different letters to him containing alleged infractions by the Commission were ignored.