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Infighting, alleged corruption: Minister suspends investment company management

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An interim management team has been appointed to run the affairs of the Abuja Investment Company Limited, AICL -the investment arm of the Federal Capital Territory Administration following the suspension, Friday, of the substantive one by the Minister of the Territory, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello.
Malam Bello explained that the action was necessary to protect the investment and ensure the company continued in the right direction, trending reports in the Federal Capital Territory Authority (FCTA) have shown.
It was gathered that following the previous suspension of the Group Managing Director  Dr. Musa Ahmed Musa, a bitter battle of succession had ensued among his immediate subordinates. That battle, and alleged corruption has now claimed them.
Those sent home for now, along with the GMD, are: Abdulsalam Salisu, (Senior Vice President(SVP)Ag. GMD); Sani Yakubu (Senior Vice President, Business Developemnt); and Showole Wasiu Abiodun (SVP Equity Management)
Others are Ibrahim Aliyu (SVP, Asset Management); Ibezim Francisca (SVP, Legal); Owraigbo Japhat A (SVP, Finance and Treasury); Engr. Abbas Yakubu Muhammed (Vice President (VP) Asset Management) and Waziri Asabe Z (VP Human Resources and Administration)
The interim management team includes Dr. Bashir Isyaku as Chairman; and Kene Nwanegbo; Garba Sani; Babangida Bashir; Omobolanle O. W. Olatunde (Mrs.); Maryam Omusaba Gomina (Mrs.), and Arc. Ramalan Ahmed Umar.
Bello disclosed that his action followed series of corruption allegations , as well as the bad working relationship among the top managers and heads of the company’s subsidiary.
His words on a visit there: “Over the years, when I reflect on the AICL, I feel elated…a lot of issues have come to my attention; so many of which you are handling and trying to resolve.
“By the grace of God, the FCT Administration considers you –the agency as very important part of the Administration with mission and vision that are laudable; and as share holders, we will continue to jealously guard our investments. Just like I will expect you and the management team to jealously guard your investment in the subsidiary, associate and affiliate companies, as well as track every kobo of your portfolio, either in quoted shares or unquoted shares because that is what we expect as share holders.
“In the recent past, a lot of things have happened, which I need to share with you. For the first time since I came in, a report came to me with respect to the investigation been carried out on this company and the key management staff. Obviously, as share holders, we feel very concerned because this is our number one investment in the FCTA, and it is an investment that has been very profitable in the past, even though not so profitable in the immediate past. It is an investment that we guard jealously, and an investment that we expect better returns.
“We had cause also as an Administration to do due diligence and investigations, especially on the relationship between AICL and the subsidiaries.  Even though there are committee reports, I have decided to come and visit you personally
“Why are we here? We are the owners of the company and share holders. All internal investigation done and the EFCC reports have created fundamental corporate governance issues. Issues that we cannot turn a blind eye to and pretend they do not happen, and these are issues that have the potential to impact negatively on our investments.
“We have come to the conclusion as share holders that we need to do changes immediately. The first change was done, the GMD had to go until investigation is completed”.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) investigation of the AICL continues, amidst hints that those cleared of any wrongdoing may be recalled.

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