After exposing a secret account with a balance of $223m (N80.2bn), a whistle-blower (name withheld)has reportedly sued the Federal Government for failing to pay him N1.9bn commission he was promised for exposing corruption.
According to Punch, the whistle-blower in a suit filed before the FCT High Court vide a writ of summons dated June 7, 2019 by his lawyer, Aliyu Alemu prayed the court to order the Federal Government to pay his money.
In the Writ of Summon, the whistle-blower asked the court to order that he was entitled to be paid the sum of N1, 914, 794, 676 by the Federal Government and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, being the reward accrue to him for whistle-blowing.
He also asked the court to order that the money be paid immediately with a post-judgment interest in respect of the commission at the rate of 10 per cent per annum.
In addition, the whistle-blower also asked the court to pay a sum of N10m as legal fees for filing the court process.
In June 2018, the whistle-blower had informed the AGF about a bank account with $223m bearing the name ‘NNPC Brass LNG INV. Fund’ with number 1750027157 domiciled in Skye Bank (now Polaris Bank), Punch reports.
The whistle-blower informed the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami about the money in June 2018. (Lawyard) The whistle-blower informed the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami about the money in June 2018. (Lawyard)
The money according to the newspaper was kept in the bank in violation of the Treasury Single Account policy of the Muhammadu Buhari government.
After reporting the case to the AGF, the whistle-blower reportedly briefed the Special Investigation Panel about his findings.
He was also said to have accompanied members of the panel to the bank where top officials were arrested.
Following the arrest of the bank officials, the panel reportedly invited members of the bank’s board for questioning.
The board members were said to have pleaded for the option of paying in installments, saying the bank would be affected negatively if they transfer the money in one fell swoop.
However, after playing his part, the whistle-blower signed a bond dated June 14, 2018 with the AGF.
President Muhammadu Buhari administration introduced whistle-blowing policy in 2016 to discourage corruption. (Punch) President Muhammadu Buhari administration introduced whistle-blowing policy in 2016 to discourage corruption. (Punch)
The document obtained by Punch states in part that, “any recovered amount from N5bn and above attracts a flat/definite reward of two and a half per cent of the recovered sum.”
The document also states that the commission would become due and payable to the whistle-blower ‘within 30 days’ of the receipt of the recovered/looted funds by the Federal Government and payment shall be made to the designated/nominated account provided in writing by the whistle-blower, Punch reports.
However, in the affidavit submitted to the court in support of the suit, the whistle-blower states that the Federal Government has failed to honour its promise to him despite putting his life and his family safety at risk to expose corruption.
He added that all the letters he wrote to the President and the AGF didn’t receive favourable response.
You’ll recall that in 2016, the Buhari administration introduced whistle-blowing policy to encourage Nigerians to reports corrupt activities by giving incentives and commissions to whistle-blowers.