My President said I’m Worth N850m”!!
I culled this article from thisdayonline. The original tile was: Yar’Adua: I’m Worth N850m, from Josephine Lohor in Abuja, 06.29.2007. I liked the article and decided to make a copy – for my own reference purposes…and just in case thisday’s archives develop a computer fault someday, they might come back here and say…thanks toks.
For the first time in the history of Nigeria, a sitting president has made his asset declaration public. President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, in fulfilling a promise he made earlier to the nation, yesterday released for public knowledge details of his assets declaration as contained in Form CCB1 submitted to the Code of Conduct Bureau as demanded by the Fifth Schedule of the Constitution.
This is expected to put a moral obligation on other public officers, especially state governors and ministers, to follow suit, although the Constitution does not make public declaration of assets compulsory.
Yar’Adua had also blazed a trail in 1999 by making his assets declaration public when he assumed office as governor of Katsina State, a tradition he continued when he was re-elected in 2003.
The President declared a total assets value of N856,452,892, including N19 million belonging to his wife, Turai. He confessed that in the last one month since he was sworn in, he had faced the dilemma of whether or not to make his declaration public. He eventually decided to do so despite the fact that the Code of Conduct Bureau “counselled against the move on the grounds that such an action would put pressure on other categories of public officials to do same even when the Constitution makes the exercise a confidential matter”.
Shortly after winning the presidential election last April, Yar’Adua had told a newspaper that he was worth “around N500 million”, although with a caveat that he needed to crosscheck the figures to be cocksure.
Special Adviser to the President on Communi-cations, Mr. Olusegun Ade-niyi, who released details of the President’s assets to State House correspondents yesterday, stated that “having weighed the two sides, the President has come to the conclusion that since he will not be breaking any law, he cannot go back o his promise to the nation”.
According to the details obtained from a copy of the assets declaration form “dispatched” May 28, 2007, President Yar’Adua has no foreign account or foreign assets, but has liabilities worth N88,793,269.77, being outstanding loans secured with the Unity Bank Plc, Imani Estate branch, Maitama, Abuja .
The President’s assets include remunerations, savings, campaign donations, post-campaign contributions, buildings and vacant plots of land, farms and orchard, cash at hand and vehicles, while the bulk of his assets as at yesterday, were listed under the remunerations, savings, campaign contributions, post-campaign contributions and 29 campaign vehicles located in Katsina and Abuja. The total annual income from his assets is put at N18.7 million while his wife has a total annual income from her assets at a value of N132,000.
Mr. Adeniyi said that the President’s declaration “was borne out of his conviction that the war against corruption cannot have meaning until those at the helm begin to live by example”, adding that Yar’Adua would work with the leadership of the National Assembly “to see what can be done to make assets declarations an effective weapon in the fight against corruption and abuse of office”.
A breakdown of the assets declaration shows that the President has a total of N43,702,892.43 as cash at bank, being remuneration, savings, campaign and post campaign contributions lodged with the Bank PHB in accounts with numbers 03710001531, 055100 000100 and 042100000041. Details show that while a total of N26,602,681.00 stands as credit at the Bank PHB, Nagogo Road , Katsina State branch; N12, 000,264.21 is in the Apapa, Lagos State branch. Also, a total of N4,999,947.22 is at the head office of the bank in Kaduna .
The President declared N7.5 million as cash in hand which he recorded as being derived from savings, campaign and post campaign contributions. The President declared a total of N88,793,269.77 as his liabilities, being cash in Nigerian banks as loans and debit at the Imani Estate, Maitama, Abuja branch of Unity Bank Plc (formerly Intercity Bank) worth N26,817, 362.19 in account number 0173362/001/000 and another N61,975,907.58 in the same branch of the bank in account 017336200100 respectively.
President Yar’Adua also declared a total assets value of N577,000,000 under buildings, vacant and undeveloped plots sections. This include the Yar’Adua family compound at Yar’Adua Quarters in Katsina State, valued at N105,000,000. This was acquired through inheritance in November 1997. There is also multi-storey building at A8 Wuse 2, Abuja with total value of N212,000,000. The land was granted by the Federal Government to him in 1988.
There is also a duplex at Malali, Kaduna State with a value of N120,000,000 that according to the President was originally a three-bedroom bungalow and a gift from his late senior brother, Major-General Shehu Musa Yar’Adua and another 7-bedroom duplex at 2 Lema Jubril Close valued at N90,000,000 that was built from savings in 1987.The President also declared that he has a vacant plot at Asokoro New Layout in Abuja valued at N50,000,000. This was granted by the Federal Government to him in 1998. He also declared two farms worth N25,000,000 in Katsina State . they include the one at Ruwan Godiya in Faskari Local Government of Katsina State valued at N10,000,000. This was acquired in 1982. Another farmland and orchad is also located at Ajiwa, Batagarawa Local Government in Katsina State and is worth N15,000,000. It was acquired in 1993.
Under shares, debentures and other securities in and outside Nigeria, President Yar’Adua declared that he has 2,000,000 units of shares of Habib Bank acquired in 1998 which is in the process of being converted to Bank PHB; 100,000 units of shares of Intercity Bank Plc also in the process of conversion to Unity Bank Plc and another 100,000 units of shares of Muradi Hotels Limited.
While disclosing that he has vehicles worth N181,250,000, the President stated that he has 29 new cars worth N174,700,000 in both Katsina and Abuja that he described as campaign vehicles, adding that he owns a Honda Accord car worth N350,000 and a Mercedes Benz worth another N6,500,000.
The President added that the First Lady’s assets are made up of three local houses worth N1,5000,000 acquired in 1998; one twin bungalow valued at N15,000,000 located in Kofar Kaura layout in Katsina State acquired in 2002 and three vacant plots in Katsina acquired in 2003 worth N2,500,000. He also disclosed that household furniture in Katsina acquired when he was a director of Habib Bank is worth N3,000,000.
Mr. Adeniyi also spoke on the position of the Freedom of Information Bill during his maiden press briefing at the State House. “The President is equally interested in discussing with the National Assembly leadership on the Freedom of Information Bill which lapsed with the last administration, with a view to ensuring quick passage in pursuit of his determination to instil transparency and accountability in the conduct of government business,” he said.
Former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, also made his assets declaration public in May 1999 shortly after he was sworn in, although when he was re-elected in 2003, he did not make any public statement on it again.