Reports indicating that the embattled boss of the Pension Reform Task Team (PRTT), Alhaji Abdulrasheed Maina has left the shores of Nigeria have emerged. Maina who headed a team that was saddled with the responsibility of recovering looted pension funds.
Maina allegedly recovered the funds from banks where they were lodged and simply moved them into banks of his own choice where they were allegedly kept for “business” till the funds were allegedly misappropriated. Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of pensioners who should be beneficiaries of the funds remained unpaid.
By the time the Senate beamed its searchlight on him and summoned him to appear before it in order to clarify some issues especially those bordering on allegations of misappropriation of funds against him, Maina failed to show up. The Senate went a step further after waiting endlessly by issuing a warrant for his arrest. The Reform Task Team boss however reacted by issuing a statement in which he claimed that his addresses were well known and that no invitation had been sent to him. He followed it up by instituting a N 1.5 billion suit against the Senate and the Inspector General of Police. He however lost the bid to vacate the warrant of arrest as the court dismissed his petition.
The Senate in its counter move however mounted pressure on the Presidency which many believed was shielding Maina to sack him forthwith. The Presidency had stated that only the Head of Service could take such an action against Maina who incidentally is an Assistant Director in the Federal Civil Service. Things however changed when the Presidency instructed the Head of Service to take disciplinary actions against Maina for abandoning his duty post without permission, an indication that Maina has eventually lost favour with the Presidency.
The inability of the law enforcement agents to track Alhaji Maina down has generated a few questions from some quarters, including questions like “was Maina truly being shielded by the Presidency?” And now that he has allegedly moved out of the country to escape being arrested, “how did he pass through security checks without being apprehended?”
It is however being discussed within the civil service that “Maina has only disappeared for a short time and he will re-appear soon”. Street Journal’s findings indicated that from his present location, he is reaching out to the powers that be. Street Journal also gathered that what he is making contacts so that he would be given a “soft-landing” when he resurfaces. Some people have however opined that the embattled Director has nothing to fear, because even if he is found culpable, with the plea bargain system, he might eventually get very mild punishment.