'This man stole from Nigeria. Today, he’s minister in Buhari’s cabinet'

As a top army officer holding command position, he abused public trust and was caught with his hand in the cookie jar. Realising that he had been boxed into a tight corner, with clear evidence of guilt laid bare before him, the officer sang like a canary as he confessed his thievery of public fund.

Sullen and distraught, he begged authorities, offering to forfeit more than two-thirds of his loot hidden in a secret bank account offshore, those familiar with the matter told PREMIUM TIMES.

He did not want to be prosecuted or publicly humiliated over the matter. His traducers empathised with him, accepted his offer, secretly reprimanded him and allowed him the freedom to enjoy the remainder of his loot in peace.

But that man — Bashir Magashi, a retired army major general — who got away with a slap on the wrist after stealing and shipping abroad not less than $550,000 while in service, has now bounced back, emerging one of the country’s most powerful ministers.

Last Wednesday, President Muhammadu Buhari appointed him to take charge of the nation’s defence ministry, a government department with the third-highest budgetary spending for 2019 –N159.13 billion. CLICK HERE FOR MORE

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