The disbanded Presidential Task Force on Pension Reforms, led by Abdulrasheed Maina, has offered to work with the incoming administration of Maj.-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) to fight against pension theft.
The team, which addressed a press conference in Abuja Thursday, said its work would be easier under Mr. Buhari, who is renowned for his tough stance on corruption.
A member of the team, Ngozika Ihuoma, said one of the achievements of outgoing President Goodluck Jonathan was the creation of the pension task reform body in June 2010 under the leadership of Mr. Maina.
Mr. Maina himself has been the focus of corruption allegations with Senators accusing him of stealing billions of naira of pension funds.
He denied the allegation, and in turn accused the Senate committee that investigated him of taking bribes.
The team said it recovered at least N280 Billion while Mr. Maina served as head of the body.
“As we welcome the Buhari Led government come 29th May, we wish to state that we will be available to brief the government on our stewardship and our readiness to assist his administration in ensuring that corruption in the pension sector becomes history”, Mr. Ihuoma said.
He also said it was unfortunate that rather than commendation, the ex-chairman of the team, Mr. Maina is being vilified by many Nigerians.
“Nigerians should rather celebrate Maina and seek for his expertise to continue with the good job he was doing and block all leakages”, he said.
Mr. Ihuoma also accused a former chairman of the Nigeria Union of Pensioners, Ali Abatcha, of doing a “hatchet job” against Mr. Maina, because the team caused his arrest and prosecution by the EFCC for fraud while he held sway as NUP president.
“Ali is one of the 42 persons and companies who are currently facing trial by the Federal High Court Abuja over his involvement in looting of Pension Funds when he was the President of Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP) to tune of N2.7 Billion”, he said.
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