The announcement of Mallam Usman Magawata on the 21st May, 2008 at 4pm news as the DG NTA following the premature retirement of Mr. Point Blank – Dr Tonnie Iredia, OON, hit the air waves as a rudeshock. But following the heated debate that greeted the faces of Nigerian, many believed Mallam Magawata should be given the benefit of doubt despite the fact that all and sundry knew that he was stepping into a shoe too big for his legs.
Consequently, after two years of assumption of office of holding sway he tactically destroyed NTA from the crescendo Dr. Iredia labored to positioned the Authority to; to a systemic failure; a religious and ethnic platform which has adversely dwindled the 90million viewership of the Authority to a fading vision and an impotent National medium.
Abridged Profile of Magawata
Usman Mohammed Magawata was born into a peasant parentage in Diggi, Kebbi State, Nigeria ;on the 14th April, 1952 and appointed DG NTA on the 19th May, 2008. We had to commence the preamble by stating the exact date, month and year of his birth and appointment for the general public to start counting down his days of retirement (By attaining age 60 on the 14th April, 2012) and the expiration of his tenure of office on the 19th May, 2012 so that the eleven contenders 7 male; 4 women and 3 staff of Directorate cadre (Career/Executive Management) for the plum position of DG, NTA should launch their attack in top gear.
He has employed members of estate of the fourth realm both local and foreign.
Brief on NTA
Prior to the winding up of his tenure on 14/4/2012, it will be recalled that NTA was one of the few public corporations/enterprises that witnessed remarkable changes during the Obasanjo years. Under the immediate past administration, not even the competition from newly licensed private television stations could shake it. But under Magawata, NTA wants to be spoon fed by government almost proud to be inefficient that was why Senator Ayogu Eze refused the FG to pay up NTA’s indebtedness of N7.4BILLION advanced to the Authority by the DEBT MANAGEMENT OFFICE NIGERIA when he uncovered the fraud of N2BILLION laundered to Magawata’s accounts in piecemeal with fictitious identities.
When Ben Bruce was appointed as DG NTA in 1999 the story of NTA changed from being an incompetent FG parastatal to a 21st Century Television Network. Its total annual revenue then was N400million but a year after, it rose to N2billion –N500% increase. In 2001, it grew up to N3billion. His feats were not restricted to finance but also saw vast improvement in terms of reach, overall serve delivery and programming courtesy of an egg head – Dr. Iredia, OON.
Upon the appointment of Dr. Iredia,OON as DG in 2003; he didn’t only sustain the legacies jointly achieved by him and his predecessor; his successes and transformation outlined him by earning his accolades are uncommon both at home and abroad, international appointment as his four years tenure marked the watershed in the life of television broadcasting and network, racking N4.5billion annually adjudged as the best DG, NTA from Western Television Network hey days in 1959 to date and a ministerial material.
The Degeneration of NTA
The degeneration of NTA commenced during the trying period of erstwhile DG, Dr. Tonnie Iredia,OON whom Magawata and his fellow Northern elements(Cabal) co-teamed up to sell a dummy to President Umaru Musa Yar’adua,GCFR that the former President Olusegun Obasanjo,GCFR was a Christian and Southerner, therefore, that was why he appointed Dr. Iredia, OON who shares the same religious faith with him and also from the South. Therefore, for a balance to be struck, it was time for a Northern Muslim to be appointed DG,NTA;leading to sacrificing professionalism and competence on the alter of ethnic,religious and primodial sentiment and parochial interest.
Similarly, the trend continued after Magawata was appointed DG by demoting the only surviving Executive Director to a career Director; Engineer Eddy Amana after Jimmy Atte’s-Executive Director,Programme retirement.
In addition, staff who worshipped in the NTA Chapel became susceptible to one form of victimization or the other by Magawata in a bid to disenfranchise them of their freedom of worship through targeted transfer.
No sooner than spending half of his tenure in office, Programmes Directorate died a natural death in addition to the many flaws witnessed daily on NTA Network and Local News across the States of the Federation. This led to NTA becoming a ghost station and only popular in Abuja – the seat of government.
The Northernization of NTA
NTA – Northern Television of Authority(2010 Acronym till date)
The Northernization of NTA was an open professed agenda of Usman Magawata shortly after her assumption of office on May 21, 2008. In one of his conversation he stated and I quote that: ‘’if I am unable to achieve anything meaningful or tangible in NTA throughout my tenure as DG, I will strive to ensure that I flood the entire Authority with my kinsmen and strategically position them in the key Directorates and positions’’.
This primordial sentiment and petty mindset of the DG in this 21st Century is not far fetched from the current events and scenario that Nigerians are witnessing today on the degeneration of NTA. To set this crude and obnoxious agenda of his; he employed the following strategies:
Redeployment of Staff
It is common knowledge also from survey that over the last three years majority of the Authority’s indigenous contractors are Northerners. Similarly, the News Directorate has been flooded by Northerners such as Umar Isa Bununu, Halima Musa, Mohammed Hamza ,Aliyu Kabir to mention just a few apart from Moji Makanjuola, Walter and Shola Atere. The foregoing has led to the lingua franca in the News Room to be Hausa Language.
In addition to the foregoing, the Northern cabals in NTA led to the dismal coverage of the Presidential inauguration with the entire process devoid of the Presentation of Certificate to Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, GCFR. The big question is that how comes such was not applicable to AIT or AIT never had such a problem?
The massive and nationwide redeployment of staff justified by frivolous reasons under the directive and approval of Magawata was a conspiracy to displace Southerners and Christians from strategic positions they occupied hitherto so that the Northerners can fit into them systematically even devoid of the requisite expertise. For instance, it is only during Magawata’s reign as a personal staff of his was redeployed to Liberia.
Our Case Against Magawata
Gentlemen of the press, good afternoon. You would recall that in October 2011, we briefed you on some of the iniquities and mal-administration by DG, NTA, Usman Mohammed Magawata. Sequel to the N17b fraud which was published by three foreign online medium.We are using this opportunity to give the DG, NTA a seven calendar day to resign from his position. Failure to accede to our request, we would through the media address the Nigeria people on each of the geo-political zone of the country in conjunction with 25 registered Anti-Corruption Non-governmental Organizations, the Parliament, the Presidency, foreign security and Intelligence Service; Former EFCC Chairman and multilateral agencies through the coordinating Minister of the Economy on the reasons why we insist that the DG NTA should resign from office and face prosecution.
Accordingly, we hereby present our case as follows:
– Abuse of Capital Funds
– Secrecy of the Activities and Operations of NTA’s Budget and False declaration of NTA’s Internally Generated Revenue
– Brazen Violations of Public, Financial and Civil Service Regulations
– Unremitted Deduction to Appropriate Regulatory Bodies.
– Diversion of Training Funds/Budgets
– Bribery of Former EFCC Boss-FARIDA WAZIRI with N100m to quash previous investigation on him; his Secretary – Tawakalit Gbadamosi and his Mistress – Rakiya Gadzama (A staff of National Health Insurance Scheme Headquarters).
– Financial Recklessness (spend over N50m on Sangomas and Sorcerers to continue to hold on to power longer than necessary to make the persecuting agencies to forget about prosecuting him; and spent additional N50m on Abuja Bureau Chief’s and Senior Editors of Media Houses of Newspapers and Magazines in Lagos not to publish any damaging story against him)
– Intervention of the Public Procurement Act; Bid – Rigging and procurement fraud which constitute punishable offences under Section 58(5) of the present Act.
– Dwindling Internally Generated Revenue of NTA
– Spurious, vexational, unacceptable and Reckless expenditure Profile Authorization.
He influenced the contract award of NTA Outside Broadcast Van renovation contract from High Definition (HD) to Standard Definition (SD) and inflated it with N2b as his kick back by recommending 3 companies to late President Umaru Musa Yar’adua, GCFR. This was as a result of the ill advise from his enabling agents-ABUBAKAR ABDULLAHI who told him that his appointment as DG might be his last chance and he should comes as much as he can. By so doing, he mortgaged the future of NTA for about 10years through a
monthly debt repayment of N70m to the Debt Management Office who advance NTA – N7.2b.
Without recourse to the fact that NTA is a partially commercialized public enterprise according to Technical Committee on Privatization Council Second Progress Report of May 1989, page 31-34, he unilaterally awarded the consultancy contract of NTA –Startime Network a digital pay TV Joint Venture The contract agreement is with the Secretary /Legal Adviser of NTA – Tessy Nwaneri. A Legal Search from Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) will provide invaluable details of the company.The award of the contract to Addmore Communications Limited Company owned and operated by his hatchet man, godfather and spiritual Adviser-ABUBAKAR ABDULLAHI,FCBAN is in clear disregard of the guidelines for appointing consulting and above his approving threshold. To the best of public knowledge, the company situated at No. 5, Osogbo Close, off Emeka Anyaoku Street,Area 11, Garki, Abuja is a shadow and phony company that only operates on paper.
He ran foul of public service regulation by flagrantly violating the employment policy of contract staff which has been abolished in public service following a directive in a circular from Office of the Head of Service of the Federation (OHSF) since December, 2010. Against all odd, he went ahead and employed a Mistress of his which he used as one of his front’s in milking the Authority dry.
When the Former Minister of Information and Communications Prof. Nkem Dora Akunyili, OFR, requested that the N8.2b NTA O.B .Van renovation contract in which the DG made N2b as kickback be re-visited and the then House Committee Chairman on Information, Honourable Aliyu Wadada now Special Assistant to F.C.T Minister, called for an OPEN PROBE to be televised live; he greased his palm with N5m through a cheque transfer from Bank PHB to Fidelity or vice versa.
According to his Secretary, Tawakalit Gbadamosi, the DG spent the sum of N1.7b to establish News 24 which is of no significance or value addition to NTA in general as it is just a metamorphosis of NTA Plus.
In connivance with his culpable diabolical looters; within two and a half years as DG NTA he bought a Duplex at Area 3, built 2 houses for his first and second sons: Suraju and Yahaya; married for them, and his daughter and bought cars for the; . He diverted part of NTA equipments and used it to establish a Studio for his first son – Suraju in Sokoto. He built an Ultra Modern TV College at Keffi, Nassarawa Statevalued at over N500million which he intends to retire into as a former Teacher; and Principal of NTA TV College Jos.
Bought a house a Federal Locust in Kebbi too
Bought other choice properties within the FCT and beyond.
He relocated his Secretary – Tawakalit Gbadamosi from her residence at Jikwoyi when she was treated by a group of young men because of her saucy attitude and show – off to Yayale Estate and used fictitious Payment Voucher’s (CASH ADVANCE)claims through Corporate Affairs Department of NTA one of his conduit to pay a two years rent for a 3 Bedroom apartment for her with additional renovations made.
He awarded the renovation (painting) of NTA Mast at DOOMSAT to a Board Member –Harami Balami for the sum of N2million.
He also unilaterally approved over a million naira to another mistress of his who was a Member of the just dissolved NTA Board of Director’s who went to England on her personal trip and phoned him that she went and inspected NTA’s OB Van at leeds,UNITED KINGDOM.
He awarded building projects to all the Board members through NTA Property and Investment Company with the exception of just a member.
He approved two foreign courses for the erstwhile Board Chairman,Engineer Benson Abunu in addition to the purchased of a brand new Toyota Camry 2009 model for N5million contrary to Federal Government monetization policy using the same fraudulent cash advance(PAYMENT VOUCHER) to pull out the money to accomplish this fraud.
If not for the removal of Engineer Benson Abunu as Board Chairman, the DG has skillfully manipulated NTA’s Executive Management and using his usual policy of ‘divide and rule’ another corruption mnemonic to gather support of some Board Members to influence the awarding of NTA Website project to the Company of the Board Chairman’s son for a whopping sum of N400million which was later pegged at N200m. By so doing, himself and the Chairman will share about N190million because the project will not be more than N10million (Evidence is contained in the minutes of Board Meeting with the Legal Adviser).
In an attempt to raise the initial 15% deposit, the renovation of O.B. Van contract, Magawata borrowed N250million each from both NTA TV Enterprises and NTA Property and Investment Company, to be able to add to what was in the coffers of NTA Headquarters brining the total to N1.2m. He single handedly did this without RATTAWU’s consent and knowledge of staff whose hard earned contributions is invested in NTA PlC.
He and his confidant engaged in a randy lifestyle and spending spree of dating anything dateable under his conventional façade of his extremist countenance, convictions, and ideals. Among their regular dates in NTA are:
Tawakalit Gbadamosi, Reena Kure, Hajiya Iya, Regina Dimlong, Tessy Nwaneri, Rabbi Gwandu,etc.
Claiming of sitting allowance tagged under bogus caption by NTA’s Secretary/Legal Adviser – Tessy Nwaneri since the inauguration of NTA Board of Directors in March,2009. NTA Board is the only Federal Board nationwide where it’s Secretary/Legal Adviser who is a Permanent and Persionable Staff drawing her emolument from the Authority who doubles as the Secretary to the Board, receives (75%) allowance in amount of Board Members previous sitting allowance prior to the review in June 2010 by National Salaries Income and Wages Commission (NSIWC).
The DG need no soothsayer to tell him what he is not popular and has not got the clout and leadership qualities to take NTA to greater heights evidenced by the summit organized in July 2011; which couldn’t attract the presence of a governor out of the 36 Governors in the Federation; not event the landlord which he shares the same fence with graced the occasion–FCT Minster or the Governor of his home state – Kebbi; because they do not believe in him.
Similarly, on the 8th June, 2011, in a repeat edition of one-of-one which featured the House Committee Chairman of Electoral Matters; Bayo Ojo who anchored the programme was intermittently apologizing on air to the Chairman for sweating profusely. This infrastructural decade extends beyond Lagos and Abuja to other states stations of the Federation.
Again, during Magawata’s administration giving a track up is not different from what is said in narration that introduces a person, which is the direct antithesis of News track up.
The sense of blunders and unprofessionalism of NTA New coverages, reporting and programme production accounts for why South Africa Broadcasting Corporation(SABC) in 2010 during one of its training programme of NTA Staff; it came with its own camera and tape.
It was no news that during power outage in NTA Lagos staff make use of touch light for signpost, use their personal money for transportation fare and camcorders for assignments. This is akin to NTA Stations nationwide. This is because since the assumption of Magawata as DG over 3 years and a half years ago he has only visited Lagos Zonal Network Centre once or twice-a zone that is suppose to be the goose that lays the golden egg for NTA. This is connected with the fact that he was sold a dummy to by his godfather – ABUBAKAR ABDULLAHI,FCBAN that if he travels frequently; he will be relieved of his appointment.
Deliberate suppression of Nasir Zaharadeen’s retirement after putting in the mandatory 35years in service over a year ago and attaining 57 years of age as at 2011It will also interest the general public that he has kept the Authority’s spokeman longer than necessary by shielding him from retirement after putting in 35 active years in the services of the Authority who has been due for retirement a year ago. This is a sharp contravention of the law – public service regulation. A clear example can be taken from Peter Igho’s case after retirement, was appointed DG, National Lottery Regulatory Commission. This scenario is aptly captured by Oronsaye’s public service reform policy gazette document.
Magawata should have absolved Nasir Zaharadin after retiring first before being appointing him as his Special Assistant. It’s strange that at his level as DG he doesn’t understand Public Service rules; Financial regulations; Public Procurement Act and other extant public and civil service rules and regulations despite being paraded by his hatchet men who are nothing but mediocre’s,charlatans and num skulls-Olagunju Arologun, Tessy Nwaneri, Tawakalit Gbadamosi,Tunde Aina etc.These calibers of monster’s makes him to be acting and operating under a bind fold.
His overt bitterness for Minister of FCT-Senator Bala Mohammed is a common knowledge to all and sundry for no just cause other than being a successor of his god father Senator Adamu Aliero, who was instrumental to his appointment as DG.
Magawata and his gingoist were busy telling those who cared to listen that ICPC honoured him in 2010 unknown to them that the investiture was staggered by his pimp and agent – Barrister Shuni; an Assistant Director Prosecution in the Commission.
Since the history of NTA there has never been a time when NTA experienced a mass exodus like under Magawata’s administration due to lack of professionalism, selective promotion, high handedness, nepotism, tribalism, uncompassionate disposition to women.
During his nearly 4 years administration some staff have died under what can be described as mysterious circumstances among which are Boniface Igomu-his second driver which he neither visited the Hospital that he died nor his residence to condole his family after spending 5 years with him. Others are Fred Jonathan; Yusuf Jibo,etc believed to be used for his sacrifice.
Annually, he brings to the office, fried Sallah meat shared among staff which is somewhat a ritual sacrifice.
He illegally made Bashir – an Assistant Director Admin in NTA Headquarters, Abuja as Secretary, Tender Board because of all the contract he influences and award to his confidants companies and also using him like others cohorts of his to clean up the mess from those snooping around who might be interested in dragging dead bones.
Background of NTA
The Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) is a National Television Network, which operates as a parastatal of the Federal Government. It’s key function and social responsibility is to provide as a public service in the interest of Nigeria, independent and impartial television broadcasting for general reception.
NTA broadcasting of today is a failure of the present Management to squarely address the herculean task of digital broadcasting in the 21st Century coupled with its inability to sustain the tempo and standard it was driven to by it’s predecessor- Dr. Iredia, OON, who generated over N17b in his four years stewardship prior to May 19, 2008 “as a result of lack of guidance by public interest, rather than allowing sectionalism, tribalism, fanatism and religious sentiments to be the order of the day.
Nigerians @ all levels have observed keenly over the last three years the crescendo of NTA’s degeneration under the current leadership, which has made the once National pride impotent, declining in credibility and it’s 90m viewership as it is popularly regarded as a well-oiled national voice of any government in power (AGIP).
Problems of The Current Management/Leadership of NTA
A clear idea of the problems confronting the current leadership of NTA are below:
- General mismanagement of financial, materials and manpower resources resulting in gross inefficiency, ineptitude, unresponsiveness to viewer and staff needs ;and low productivity.
- Absence of Merit – Recruitment is not based on qualification and experience, The same applies to promotion which is not merit based on laid down criteria which should ensure that only productive and competent staff are deserving of promotion are promoted. The dearth of merit system has consequently led to favouritism, sectionalism and tribalism.
- Public Waste – There is a lot of waste taking place such as a waste of materials, funds, equipments and manpower which stem from the fact that the current leadership are not running it along business line as a commercial oriented outfit in order to enhance it revenue profile or surpass it’s predecessor unprecedented record.
- Financial Problem- The present leadership is found to be embarking on while elephant projects that has gradually led it to mortgaging the future of the Authority without the required funds.
- Poor Management – NTA under the present leadership is not an exception among Federal Government Parastatals suffering from mal-administration. Thus, this has breed inefficiency which accounts for why is not presently run along business principles and methods, because of a lot of internal corruption and embezzlement by management and staff which they see as a means of enriching themselves. Therefore, they regard it as no man’s business to be plundered and milked dry.
Mexican/Brazilian/Spanish Soap Operas taking over the Nigerian air time contrary to what obtains in time past when indigenous (local) Nigerian soap operas and telenovelas were the major staples of Nigerian television viewers as a typical Nigerian home would pass the evening in front of the television watching very entertaining productions such as: The New Masquerade, Cock Crow @ Dawn, lcheoku; the village headmaster, Mirror in the school, Ripples, Checkmate, Behind the Cloud, Fortunes, Mind Bending, Palace, Samanja, Bassey and Company etc (All very entertaining programmes produced by Nigerians then.
- Dearth of special budget designed internally by the leadership either from their Internally Generated Revenue(lGR) or budgetary allocation for funding of programming, and acquisition of the production of good and quality programmes that meets its acquisition policy.
- Failure to recognize Dr. Jonathan’s Presidency during the long wakeful game of watching and waiting and after swearing -in as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria by the DG’s refusal to play National Anthem for the C-ln-C on his inaugural live Broadcast to the Nation on the dictates of the Cabals/ 12 Apostles) – Abba Rama, Adamu, Aleiro, Turai Yar’adua.
• Low Quality NTA local programmes that has culminated into abandonment of indigenous values which the local productions project to ape the Americans filling it’s airtime leading to loss of interest and decline in viewership.
The failure of NTA to allow NN24 to take up the role they were suppose to play in organizing presidential debate as it has done since 1999 because of the vacuum they saw.
Other problems/criticisms in the current leadership are infested with:
- Defective capital structure resulting from heavy dependency burden on budgetary allocation.
- Inappropriate technology especially at community status level
- Gross incompetence and mismanagement of funds and operations
- Blatant corruption both internally and externally
- Crippling complacency as a result of near monopoly power (as sole Broadcast Network) culminating in corruption
- Confused, inconsistent and conflicting mission. Lost of bid for Network License in 2010 to Silver Bird.
- Dearth of studio for multi -channel stations.
- Dearth of spares for star times television with in-built decoder
- Lost of bid for Network License in 2010 to Silver Bird
- Deliberate refusal to invite NTA DG nor any representative from his medium in the just concluded(Maiden) Presidential Media Chart in this dispensation due to incompetence in August,2011 and 28th December,2011 respectively.
In summary, the current leadership views NTA as a means of enriching themselves and this has been enshrined in their bloodstreams and bone marrows as their motivating forces are self interest, personal gain, personal success and individualism rather than corporate goal and team success.
Similarly, DG NTA nor any representative from the media was again excommunicated from the second and last Presidential Media Chart for this year that took place 22nd December, 2011.
Everything that the previous administration has labored for has been destroyed by Magawata who has made NTA notorious and lethargic by wining the defect …. Prize for the most hated public corporation or enterprise driven by unseen forces of complacency as epitomized by the Nigerian Civil Service attitude as it’s order of the day.
Again we also use this medium to call on the presidency to drive a reform agenda in NTA with a new mantra of sit up or become extinct by setting up a panel of Enquiry to investigate the Authority which should be headed by a seasoned professional and technocrat –Mr. Steve Oronsaye.
Charges Against Magawata
The charges against Magawata are below:
- Executive Fraud amounting to over N17b in connivance with fraud syndicate accomplices –Rabbi Gwandu, Tawakalit Gbadamosi, Iya Abubaka, Olagunju Awologun,Abubakar Abdullahi etc.
- Employment Error
Third Class graduates (a factory for quacks; and half baked mediocre making NTA a dumping ground for. We are not surprised because even the heir to Magawata’s throne /emire and his god father’s son are products of this class of degree.
- Fund Transfer Fraud used for settlement of interest to perpetually remain in office longer than necessary.
- Forgery – Awarding purchase of Camera equipments with fictitious companies with no website, e-mail, official address and telephone number; and not duly registered with C.A.C
- Breach of Elementary Control and breach of trust which are both essential ingredient in leadership and management.
- Imprest Racketing – Recycling of receipts, returns and invoices in respect of stationaries, car hire, provisions, refreshment and other items which are handling purchased in the past.
- Account Statement Fraud to cover up loopholes (conduit pipe); revenue and expenditure leakages.
Lessons from Magawata’s Mal-administration
The people Magawata’s thinks he placed on surveillance where also watching him. Its unfortunate that he has reaped where he didn’t sow anything because he is mentally bankcrupt and the dullest DG NTA has ever had which is in partly attributed on the Board and the Federal Government who takes a lot for granted in terms of probe (self examination of the activities of a (CEO while in office); physical verification, contamination and certification).
Fraudsters always leave a trail
As the saying goes, leopards do not change their skin
High level of professionalism and inter-department cooperation will always assist in nipping the bud of fraud.
Sticking to policies should be adhered to at all times.
Feigning of ignorance by Chief Executives of MDA’s is no excuse.
There should be inclusion of the “incorruptible to effectively widen syndicate membership.
Weak or non existent internal control leads to breath of ethnics, reveal scam, cause executive greed and impropriety, raiser eyebrows, leads to capitalizing on loopholes.
It is said that a wise man flee form pollution, but in Magawata’s case his accomplice misleading him to various lure of temptations thrives in pollution; because he easily succumb to moral pressure and therefore cannot purposed his heart not to defile himself and NTA due to his weak secret lifestyle.
He is aware that his days are numbered and his cup is spilling over, but EFCC; ICPC and CCB are hesitant to act because he has bought them over likewise Code of Conduct Bureau whose Chairman teleguided him on the filling of his Asset Declaration Form last year – 2010, a former staff of NTA through his P.A – Mr. Peter.
Despite his concerted efforts to remain in Power/Office as DG NTA to Vice President, Prof. Jerry Gana, CON, His Governor-HE Saidu Dakingari and his latest in road into Chief Anenih,CFR;Ben Bruce and Chief Mike Ogiadomhe; we are calling on Nigerians to support the war against Magawata as we intent to initiate a violent protect to bring this administration to disrepute through opposition parties-CPC,CAN and international media if not sacked and prosecuted.
We in NTA have witnessed the worst corrupt practices in our lifetime since the history of NTA to date under Magawata’s administration. Is it a curse that NTA will never progress further than how Dr. Iredia,OON left it, or it is the Northerner’s way? We are urging the Federal Government to reverse the prevailing culture in which Magawata’s allegations/acts is viewed as permissible as he has traded NTA’s birthright as Northern Television Authority.
Magawata should be made to account for his iniquities NOW as soon as he is relieved of his appointment without being treated as a sacred caw. Nigerians within the last 6 months have been bombarded with stories, facts, hearsays and fictions regarding how Magawata and his culpable diabolical looters (Accomplices) have plundered billions of Nigerian money – the people’s wealth while in office.
Under Magawata NTA has suffered leadership problems, the Chief of which is corruption. The rapport that exist between the leader and the led is openly defined by mutual trust and the ability of the leader to appropriate scarce resources for common good. However, as this trust is breached, the progress of NTA is graveling impeded. This is the point where NTA is now.
With thorough Financial audit by ICPC and EFCC, all public records points toward Magawata as the undisputed king of Nigerian thieves of C.E.O while a vast majority could not afford a square meal per day. The records are there even though he is clandestinely evacuating some and destroying others that will reveal the billions of Naira he has stashed away in local banks in conspiracy with some Northern / Southern elements (crooks).
We recall the speech delivered by Mr. President when he said that he was not afraid to step on people’s toes. We are still waiting for that promise to be fulfilled and he must fight corruption in NTA using the anti-graft agencies as the cancer has eaten deep into the fabric of the Executives.
The foregoing is responsible for the bewildered illusionary and arrogant display of lack of professional ethics and conduct in NTA because he succumbs to moral pressure and cannot purpose his heart not to defile himself and NTA due to his feeble secret randy social lifestyle of defiling teenage girls, spinster’s ,married women and his fellow men as a NANCY OR GAY(BISEXUAL) for any kind of favours.
We have collected solidarity signatures from staff across the Zonal Network Centres who are disillusioned and have lend credence to our voice to either publicly testify in a live telecast Public Hearing to be jointly organized by the Senate Committee on Information and Federal Character or file in their petitions to be deliberated upon during the exercise.
If former PDP Chairman could resign his office upon the allegation of corruptly enriching himself to the tune of barely more than a N100m who is now standing trial, in the interest of the nation; then Usman Magawata should toe the path of honour by resigning now in order not to obstruct the Senate Public Hearing and investigations because there cannot be two sets of laws for one nation and use all in receipt of all the details of the contracts he awarded in 2011 in contravention of the public procurement Act. We intend to break this cycle and call for help during the Public Hearing where he will be publicly lampooned to the world.
To aid the Senate’s investigation, we shall recommend a team of Professionals – Certified Fraud Examiners to aid them and make their job lot easier by uncovering the rot and decay in NTA as it slides into oblivion resulting in massive corruption, large scale fraud and in efficiency by Magawata and his surrogates that has bled the Authority beyond clothing as it involves in illegal, fraudulent and unnecessary deals bur Contrary to FG circular issued by the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation between July – September 2009, signed by former Permanent Secretary, Ammuna Lawan – Ali, OON, mni, FNIA; on the stoppage of Payment of Annual Subscription to Professional bodies, Magawata still allowed himself to be caved by Tessy Nwaneri to be using NTA hard earned and scarce resources for payment of Annual Membership Fee to Nigeria Bar Association.
Similarly, Magawata continued to flaut flagrant contempt for Government policies by not heading to the establishment of Anti Corruption and Transparency Unit in NTA as well as the Department of Industrial relations desk in the Human Resources Department Ref. No. HESF/EMS/EIR/B.63694/IV/2/89 of 25th May, 2009; endorsed by Ms A 1 pepple, CFF (The Head of Civil Service of the Federation.
Similarly, OB Van Contract of N38 billion during COJA (8th All Africa Games) of October 4-18, 2003 won by JVC through NTA at a contract sum of $21m which was later re-awarded to Acc Computers/Thompson Broadcast International System for $51m without invalidating the first contract with an allegation that the one of such contracts was said to have been awarded to a company owned by Stella Obasanjo for N6b for furniture for the Games Village. This allegedly cost Ben Murray Bruce his position of DG; receded by a mass seizure by the State Security Service by the erstwhile DG, Col. Kayode Are (rtd) now Deputy National Security Adviser of TELL Magazine Headline caption of June 30, 2003 edition.
A few examples of act which savour corruption by DG NTA is cited below:
The erstwhile Speaker of House of Representatives, Rt (Hon Patricia Olubunmi Etteh was impeached from office for anticipatory approval. She was yet to purchase anything and desire purchasing an official car for N23million.
Being aware of the fact that Nigeria is a very large country with different states, the constitution seeks to ensure that all aspects of the populations of the country are well represented I the government hence the requirement that appointments to public offices should reflect the Federal Character (geographical spread) of the nation, however public offices should be filed by qualified people appointed from various parts of the country so as to avoid the predominance of one group over others. The Executive Management of NTA which Magawata recommended to erstwhile Minister John Odey was lopsided just as the staff strength of NTA. He deliberated schemed out South West because of his aversion for President Obasanjo for no just cause.
Any member of the Executive arm of government be that person. The President, the Vice-President, Governor, Deputy Governor, Chairman, Vice Chairman, and Chief Executive at Federal level- Ministers, Federal Commissioners, and Controllers, Director – General’s, Managing Director’s and Executive Secretary of Federal parastatals who awards contracts for the execution of public projects and acquiesces in the inflation of costs so as to receive a percentage is quilty of corruption. This is the case of NTA O.B Van contract and NTA stations Network consultancy contract which he made N17b from alone outside other petty contracts he has been awarding which he has been using stooges to siphon public funds laudered abroad
Non compliance with FG regulations, embezzlement of the Authority’s funds (IG) and unjustifiable expenditures; accumulation of unjustifiable debts and loans; poor industrial relations policy, refusal to honour obligations owed to other FG MDA’s among others.
Since the teams of Auditors and Accountants that conducts routine auditing of NTA Accounts and monitoring of IGR from Office of Auditor General of the Federation and Office of the Accountant Generation of the Federation respectively have compromised their constitution mandate for millions of naira whenever they visit, buying up EFCC under Farida Waziri; and members of the estate of the fourth realms also, only the Distinguished Senate of this dispensation can beam its searchlight on NTA that has managed to escape, poetic justice. But with you, we believe that there is light at the end of the tunnel as Magawata will be the first victim of the special courts on corruption cases underway by the CJN with six month duration to determine all accused cases.
We in NTA have had more than our own fairshare of bad leadership and corruption with all it’s attendant numerous consequences – of general weakness of the system, poor management capacity, high level corruption, total absence of discipline for transparency and accountability , poor corporate governance, weak internal control mechanisms and enforcement mechanism of regulatory institutions like National Broadcasting Corporation, FMIC, ACF, EFCC, CCB etc that can promote and sustain economic development of NTA, create value for the general public since the authority still resides with the people even though the position of DG, is a political appointment.
Furthermore, to give a pseudo-impression that he is working had to galvanize his battered image after May 2010 when Farida Waziri quizzed him, his Secretary and his mistress a staff of NHIS that he gave her N100m to squash the case against him in May 2010, he has busy himself with receiving of awards which he buys by approving huge sums from NTA’s internally generated revenue (IGR) which is now nothing to write home aboof late are from African Business School,Abuja; Academy of Entrepreneurship Studies,Lagos etc.
This is the only way the unabated presence of corruption in all aspects of our national life which has hindered Nigeria’s economic growth and created pervasive institutional mismanagement pioneered by BPE Public Hearing in this dispensation to reinvigorate the anti-corruption agencies and Senate Committee’s oversight function and create barriers which will prevent people from corrupt practices and be brought to timely justice to send a clear message to all and sundry especially in his own case whose clock is ticking.
In view of the foregoing, we are calling on the Distinguished Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to investigate the activities of Magawata led NTA which neither ICPC nor EFCC has conducted their usual routine auditing of the Authority since 2008 to date on allegations of financial recklessness, abuse and disregard for due process and fraud. Everything he did was without the approval of the erstwhile NTA Board of Directors by flouting due process in the award of contracts and diverting of funds outside the provisions of the law.
Under Magawata, most public officers indulge in excessive local and international trips as a clever means of fleeing the Authority of colossal sums of money in estacodes and duty travel allowances (DTA’s) which are not accounted for. It is public knowledge that this he does for most of his foot soldiers when they are broke or he wants to compensate them for laundering money for him or using them as fronts for fictitious and inflated contract award to his cornices, kin and kith by arranging meaningless official trips, majority which they do not embark or ever undertake, in order to line their pockets. This the staff does by following his footsteps. The benevolent government we need in NTA is the one that will channel the Authority’s dwindling resources towards provision of necessary infrastructure.
Magawata is no exception from other privileged Nigeria’s public servants who are of the opinion that squandering public funds is a past-time because they believed that the Debt Management Office Nigeria(DMO) is always at the beck and call of MDA’s to provide domestic debt of stable and long- term funding as a critical component of the drive towards the attainment of laudable objective of expanding productive capacity of Nigeria’s economy.
AHMED GARBA NUHU KWAJAFA