African press review 20 July 2012
Is Nigeria broke and should its president be impeached? Who's been ripping off Nigerian police pensions? And how a local community foiled a kidnapping by fake cops.
We focus on Nigeria where the House of Representatives is threatened to impeach President Goodluck Jonathan, if he fails to release all the funds earmarked for capital projects by September this year.
The Tribune says the motion was sparked by lawmakers’ anger over what they consider a “false alarm being raised by Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo Eweala that the country was broke”.
Vanguard underlines complaints by lawmakers that unpaid contractors were stalling work at major road construction sites due to the non-release of the budgets for ministries, departments and agencies known as MDAs
The Punch reports that house minority leader Femi Gbajabiamila, who proposed the amendment, received resounding applause from the majority of members during Thursday’s session.
The Sun highlights the reaction of the presidency to the threats, Jonathan’s office claiming that the two arms of government, executive and legislature, are on the same page on budget execution.
ThisDay takes up the arrest of a female director in the communications ministry on graft charges. The paper reports that CU Attange was picked up by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on charges of swindling several billions of naira from the police pensions office during her tenure as deputy director of the fund from 2007 to 2008.
According to ThisDay, the discovery not only underscores the Herculean task facing the EFCC and its operatives, but also the enormous state resources being stolen by a few corrupt Nigerians.
Vanguard narrates how unarmed community youth in Delta State foiled the kidnapping of a woman by five fake police officers in the Edo state capital. The paper reports that the gang drove into Iyara Community “in commando-like style”, a siren fitted on their Toyota Hilux jeep carrying a police number plate, followed by a Mercedes Benz car loaded with charms.
Vanguard says the young people blocked the sole gateway out of Iyara after the gang members failed to declare their identities. The kidnappers then jumped out of the cars in an attempt to escape but were quickly picked up in nearby bushes by vigilante groups alerted by a youth leader.
Vanguard says they have all confessed to the attempted crime and have been handed over to police headquarters in Benin City.