The Kano State governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, has been filmed receiving bribe, amounting to about $5million from contractors in the state.
Multiple contractors who spoke with DAILY NIGERIAN on the condition of anonymity said the governor personally receives from 15 to 25 percent kickbacks for every project executed in the state.
The sting operation to capture the governor on camera began two years ago when one of the contractors agreed with DAILY NIGERIAN request to plant spy camera on his kaftan lapel while offering the bribe.
During about 10 months efforts to capture the bribe giving/taking scenes, the governor’s face and body were clearly captured in nine clips, while six others did not clearly reveal the governor’s face. About $5m dollars were delivered to the governor during the sting operation.
One of the contractors who preferred not to be named said the reason he collaborated with DAILY NIGERIAN was to expose corruption and bring sanity to the country.
“If my aim is to blackmail or extort the governor, I would have used the videos get over a billion settlement or force the governor to pay the hundreds of millions of naira the state is owing my company or force him to pay back all the money I paid him as kickbacks,” he said.
“We believe if public office holders are exposed, there will be sanity in the system even if I will not be the beneficiary in future.”
In August, Mr Ganduje signed an executive order on Open Government Partnership, OGP, directing all ministries, departments and agencies to fully implement the principles.
“Kano State has joined the Open Government Partnership to deepen institutional reforms, fight corruption, and grant citizens’ right of access to public records and information and to enable citizens to effectively participate in governance,” Mr Ganduje said.
“On the premise of answering the call of President Muhammadu Buhari, that Nigeria must fight corruption to a standstill, Ganduje becomes very committed in the OGP project.”
Anti-corruption activist, Kabir Dakata, who also watched the video before its release to the public, said it was ironic that a governor who always preaches the gospel anti-corruption is found stealing public funds.
Presidency sources familiar with the situation said two security agencies have been asked by President Muhammadu Buhari to file a report on the video and submit to him in earnest.
The report, according to sources, involves analysis on the audiovisual contents of the clips, backgrounds and sequence, and then give recommendations to the president.
The sources told DAILY NIGERIAN that the president would act on the report as soon the two agencies submit the report.
Kano Government’s Response
Even before the release of the video, the state government had dismissed it as “cloned” document meant to blackmail and extort the governor.
“We wish to state that there is no iota of truth to these allegations and if indeed there is any such alleged video, it is at best cloned,” the Kano state commissioner for information, Muhammad Garba, said in a statement.
“The government of Kano state is taking this matter seriously, and will exploit every appropriate and legal avenue to ensure that it gets to the root of the matter and the perpetrators are brought to book”.