Nigeria’s president, Muhammadu Buhari, has declared that Gimba Yau Kumo, the fugitive former Managing Director, Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) wanted by the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) over an alleged $65m fraud is no longer his son-in-law.
The ICPC has since began a manhunt for Kumo over alleged fraud, committed with two others, while he was managing FMBN.
Kumo, a former Managing Director, FMBN, got married to Buhari’s daughter in October 2016 in Daura, Katsina State.
A statement issued Friday by the President’s spokesman, Garba Shehu, said the latest move by the ICPC to declare Kumo wanted, notwithstanding his connections, has shown the seriousness of the Buhari administration to fight corrupt practices in the country.
“A running story to the effect that the ICPC has declared ‘an in-law of the President’ wanted in connection with fraud involving the large sum of money, USD65 million to be exact,” the statement said.
“This should normally be an affirmation that our anti-corruption agencies/institutions are truly independent and allowed unfettered freedom by the President; which is in fact the case. That a state institution can issue such is a measure of the administration’s commitment to accountability, equality, and justice.
“To set the records straight, the person declared wanted by the ICPC is not an in-law to President Buhari. While at some point in time, the said fugitive from justice had been linked to a family member in marriage; that relationship has ended some years ago.
“It is therefore unfortunate to bring the President’s family into this case. It is in our view an attempt to generate views and sell copies of sensational reporting.
“The President’s position at all times is that the law is allowed to take its course. As is well known of him, President Muhammadu Buhari will not provide any cover for crime, no matter who is involved.”
The ICPC had said Kumo is wanted alongside Tarry Rufus and Bola Ogunsola over alleged misappropriation and dispersion of national housing fund.
The notice, published on the commission’s website was signed by the ICPC spokesperson, Mrs Azuka Ogugua.
It reads, “The persons whose pictures appear above, Mr. Tarry Rufus, Mr. Gimba Yau Kumo, and Mr. Bola Ogunsola, are hereby declared wanted by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission in connection with issues bordering on misappropriation of National Housing Funds and diversion of the sum of $65m.
“Anyone who has useful information on their whereabouts should report to ICPC Headquarters, Abuja, any of the ICPC state offices, or the nearest police station.”
Kumo’s tenure at FMBN was characterized by allegations of corruption.
It was alleged that the fleeing former boss of FMBN and three others paid themselves outrageous severance packages at the end of their tenure in October 2014.
Last month, the Senate committee on public accounts summoned Kumo to explain the alleged irregular award of N3 billion contract when he was still at the bank.