Wanted ex-Chairman of Presidential Task Force on Pensions reforms, Abdulrasheed Maina, may have gone underground but his political campaign posters for the office of the governor of Borno State in 2019 have already flooded parts of Abuja, the federal capital territory and Kaduna metropolis.
Although President Muhammadu Buhari’s order that Maina be flushed out of the federal Civil Service for an alleged large scale scam and abscondment from duty post, his family has risen in strong defence of the suspect, describing him as a messiah, who was persuaded by Buhari’s men to come back from exile to help in sanitising the pension system.
But while he remains underground apparently to avoid being arrested for prosecution by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, he is tactically working to actualise his ambition of ruling Borno State when the Independent National Electoral Commission gives the go-ahead for the electioneering campaigns for the 2019 polls.
One of the posters with Maina’s picture with a black caftan and black cap to match, posted at Apo Overhead Bridge adjourning the Apo Legislative Quarters, has dominant red and green colours, indicating that he is likely to pitch his tent with one of the parties with those colours. The posters, which has the imprint of Borno Stakeholders’ Forum, has the caption: Hope 2019 and a promise: “Borno Shall be great Again and with Abdulrasheed Maina, Our Future is Guaranteed”.
Similar posters were pasted in some areas of Kaduna, where Maina’s family members reside and work. It was also in Kaduna, where the family members yesterday carpeted unnamed cabal in the Buhari administration, which they claimed, had invited Maina to come out of hiding and work with the government of Change only to be betrayed and persecuted.
At a news conference in Kaduna on Wednesday, the spokesman for the Maina family, Malam Aliyu Maina, flanked by Salihu Maina and Ladan Abdullahi, vowed to expose those in the Presidency behind his ordeal. Aliyu Maina said, “The entire family of Abdullahi Maina is categorically stating that our son is not in any way a fraudster, rather he is a messiah who brought reforms into Nigerian Pension Scheme, whose effort saw the disappearance of pensioners roaming the streets of Abuja and other state capital in Nigeria.
“It is on record that Abdulrasheed Maina’s reform put to a stop the fraudulent withdrawals of huge sums from both the Nigerian Pension Board, the Nigerian Police Pension Board etc. Perhaps it is this noble efforts that made him enviable to the present administration when they came into power to convince him to come back and assist in its “change” agenda.” He said they had noticed the recent attempt by the cabal to ridicule and tarnish the image of Maina family.
“The cabals have gone to the extent of marking our house in red paints with an inscription of EFCC under investigation. The EFCC is wrong in their action because Abdulrasheed inherited so many properties from his late father in Kaduna and Abuja, some of them were built before he was born so how could he have acquired them fraudulently?