Revealed: How Plateau APC Chairman Latep Dabang Allegedly Diverted Over N193 Million Party Fund, 153 SUBEB Contract Lots, MDG Contracts Worth N73 Million To Self, Family And Cronies
Political turmoil is at the moment threatening the leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) ,Plateau State chapter as some party faithful are ready for political logjam and showdown to oust Late Dabang for what they termed alleged speedy diversion of funds meant for the members to himself, friends and close associate.
The Chairman has been accused of playing politics of gold digging as they petitioners due to alleged power drunk he has turned a deaf ear to the general outcry.
The party faithful’s in Plateau APC has petitioned the national APC secretariat, Bola Tinubu the leader of the party as it also copied the letter to other stalwarts of the party –including Governor Simon Bako Lalong, over what they described as monumental fraud and corruption by the Plateau State APC Chairman, Mr. Letep Dabang.
The spokesman of the petitioners, Mr. Youmpee Jalmet alleged that the Plateau APC Chairman has secretly converted millions of Naira meant for the state chapter of the party secretly to personal use.
The petitioners pointed out allegations of monies for chairman and councillorship forms running into (N192 million), massive cornering of contracts in SUBEB, MDG contract (N73 million) and 5% deductions from party appointees amongst others.
Honourable Letep Dabang refuted the allegations, as he termed them all as false and stated that he is unaware of such a petition but they also demand for state Congresses to hold across the wards, local governments and state which they said is an indication that they are not satisfy with Lateb Dabang leadership in Plateau chapter, owning to the fact that they lamented that in the beginning there were no zoning arrangement but he planning script that into his mandate.
He maintained that as the leader of the party, such allegations are not unusual, because of the complexity and diversity within the party. But he stated that he remains committed to leading the APC to loftier heights and that distraction such as these will not deter him from steering the party to victory in 2019.
In what remain unknown to the supporters of APC on the plateau is whether the leadership of Lateb can deliver on its campaign promises of 2014 that led to sacking of PDP in office .Confusion hits the party when members can’t openly pronounce APC or canvass for support again the forthcoming general elections by 2019 .
See Full Petition Below
The National Party Chairman,
All Progressives Congress,
40 Blantyre Street,
Wuse II, Abuja.
LETTER OF COMPLAINT AND PETITION
I, on behalf of the APC Congress Men Plateau State, am constrained to draw your attention to our preliminary findings which revealed glaring cases of corruption, abuse of office, criminal breach of trust, unlawful enrichment and wanton conversion of party funds by the Plateau State APC Party Chairman; Hon Latep Dabang.
By this submission, I hazard being misunderstood as joining issues with our party Chairman on personal grounds, or perhaps, to be seen as hoodwinking the public in the cause of a private adventure against the State Chairman of this great party. Nevertheless, I pray this document is dispassionately assessed and regarded on the merits of its contents; for I can only hope it finds attention on good conscience and the moral resolve of our great party: The All Progressives Congress (APC).
Let me first of all pledge my loyalty to the party (APC) which remains supreme, and reaffirm my confidence on the structure upon which it is built which apparently includes the national offices, office of our State Party Chairman and every other portfolio.
But then, it is rather unfortunate that the Plateau State APC under the Chairmanship Hon. Latep Dabang has lost focus and drive, and has disconnected itself from the spirit and ethos that guide the All Progressives Congress. The party is now a sorry and upsetting spectacle on the political-scape on the Plateau, a sight that portends nothing but mischance for us as a political party.
It is therefore on the strength of the failure of the State Chairman to lead the Party with aptitude and integrity, but has rather gone on a personal crusade; an adventure of the avaricious political class that leaves nothing behind its wake but systemic corruption and breakdown, structural imbalance, socio-economic hardship, internal rebellion and ultimately a failed party. I am hereby persuaded to present this petition to intimate you, on the reckless looting of the treasury of the Plateau State APC. I humbly and respectfully entreat that a launch of an investigation into the person and office of the State Party Chairman be carried out to forestall further damage.
As Party Chairman, Hon Latep Dabang is yet to convene a State Executive meeting to appraise, before the Exco, the State-of-Affairs of the party, and to parley on how to move the party forward; neither has he indicated the honours of making transparent before oblivious party Excos the income and expenditure of the party so far.
Hon Latep Dabang has abuse the ranks of this great party. He has imposed himself as Sole Administrator to the party; he is now the party’s Financial Secretary, Treasurer, Organizing Secretary, Publicity Secretary, and also act as Deputy to his own office. This has caused disaffection within the ranks of the party.
Hon Latep Dabang was allotted 153 contract slots by the Plateau State Primary Education Board (SUBEB) on behalf of the APC Exco members and party faithfuls; but he personalized the lots to his children and in-laws.
Also, MDG contract was given to the State Party Chairman to the tune of Seventy Three Million Naira only (N73,000,000), whose proceed was to support the running of the party but was diverted for personal usage.
During the last exercise conducted by the party preparatory to the local government and councillorship election, the various forms were sold to party aspirants as follows:-
Chairmanship forms – 80 forms – @N600,000/form = N48,000,000
Councillorship forms – 720 forms – @N200,000 = N144,000,000
Total cash on sales of form = N192,000,000
By the computation above, the State Electoral Committee, as headed by the state party Chairman, was expected to have realised and appropriated the sum of One Hundred and Ninety Two Million Naira. This, at the point of writing this petition is yet to be done.
His extreme ambition as a politician has strained the once cordial relationship he enjoyed with the State Governor; despite an appeal by His Excellency to Hon Latep Dabang not to aspire for the seat of the Inter Party Advisory Committee Chairman (IPAC); to allow for inclusiveness in inter-party relations. But the State Party Chairman in brazen act of insubordination, went ahead to take advantage of the opportunity; bribing his way through the delegates to contest the chairmanship of the Inter-Party Advisory Committee against the wish of higher authorities.
In 2017, a letter was written to His Excellency, Governor Simon Lalong, jointly signed by APC’s state secretary, Alhaji Musa Sati, the state publicity secretary, Chindo F. Fahat, and 16 others, accusing the APC state party Chairman of personalizing the activities of the party at the state level that were supposed to be carried out by the officers concerned, and also of making appointments in the party without duly consulting the State Working Committee (SWC) or the State Executive Committee. This letter was published on the February 3rd 2017, by Daily Trust News Paper, but the allegations were never investigated but supressed by the chairman. (Please find attached copy of the newspaper publication: Annexure A)
On the 26th of June, 2015, an APC party leader, in the person of Capt. Joesph Din petitioned the APC Electoral Committee as headed by Hon Latep Dabang on the misappropriation of the sum of N10,000,000 proceeds from the sales of forms for indication of interest to contest for LGA Chairmanship and Councillorship Elections in Plateau State in 2013. This made headlines with The Nation Newspaper on the 7th of April 2016, but thanks to the APC State Chairman, it has become a “cold case” due to his undue manipulations. (Please find attached copy of the petition and newspaper publication: Annexure B& C)
The unrestrained attitude of Hon Latep Dabang has now gone from the sublime to the ridiculous where the likes of Capt. Joseph Din (Member BOT), the Late John N. Shagaya, Hon. Jock Alamba (National Deputy Welfare Secretary), Ahj. Ibrahim Dasuki (Former Minister), among others have been deliberately side-lined from state party affairs by the party chairman; this is why they have decided to stay away from the secretariat. If respectful party personalities like these can become victims of the arrogance of the state party Chairman, who else is safe as party member?
In his disregard for his office and the entire secretariat, Hon Latep Dabang is never available on seat for official duties of any official visits, but apparently, he has moved his office at his convenience and leisure to the Lamingo Golf Club where he never belonged before until now when he wants to muscle the confidence of the Governor.
Upon assumption of office, the party chairman inherited a liability to the tune of five million and ninety six million naira, which includes staff salaries for over sixteen months and other sundry amounts. But in his resumption of office he laid off staff without payment consideration; a debt burden that is not given attention by the chairman.
The party secretariat remains poorly funded despite the 5% monthly deductions from all political office holders, a fund meant to run the affairs of the secretariat. But salaries of the staff are not been met, the party office has deteriorated to a veritable museum, and funds have obviously been diverted into personal use by the party chairman.
An audit should be carried out on the Party’s account. This, ordinarily is expected to be an annual exercise, but has not been carried out since the inception of Hon Latep Dabang into office.
That Hon Latep Dabang steps aside, and a committee be set up to probe his affairs so far.
We further recommend that the state working committee should be ready to pass a vote of no confidence on the person of Hon Latep Dabang if found wanting, or otherwise shall equally mobilize the congress to the needful.
That for the purpose of fairness and strategic considerations, the office of the State Party Chairman ought to be zoned to the North since the Governor and his Deputy come from the Southern and Central Zones respectively.
From the above, it is very obvious that it is only morally imperative for the party to set up a “High Panel” to probe into these allegations of criminality and corruption against the APC State Party Chairman, Hon Latep Dabang, as I reaffirm that the facts as presented are not cooked or fabricated, neither is this an attempt to merely defame the person of Hon Latep Dabang without cause; but they are as true and accurate.
However, we will want to commend the Party LGA Chairmen for their commitment and support to the party in spite of the woes of a disappointing leadership, without which, the party would have been a public illustration of political embarrassment and a show of shame.
Hon. Youmpee Jalmet Mike Shemu
APC Congress Men APC Congress Men
Cc: Rt. Hon. Simon BakoLalong [Executive Governor Plateau State]
Chief Bola Tinubu [APC National Leader]
APC Zonal Chairman
Jock Alamba [National Deputy Welfare Secretary]
Capt. Joseph Din [APC Party Leader]
Plateau State Working Committee
LGA Party Chairmen