The opposition Peoples Democratic Party on Monday said it was not surprised by the Federal Government’s controversial decision to reinstate Maina.
The party also alleged that Maina had been paid N22m salary arrears by the Federal Government.
The PDP said the decision was a confirmation of the classical novel by a British author, Jeffery Archer titled, Honour among thieves, where he postulated that criminals do not compromise the actions of other criminals”.
The former ruling party warned that corruption would soon consume the country.
PDP’s position was contained in a statement signed by its spokesman, Dayo Adeyeye, in Abuja on Monday. According to him, Nigerians had expected Maina to be arrested not reinstated.
He said, “It is in the light of this that the PDP wishes to state that we are not too shocked at the steps taken by the administration of the All Progressives Congress in reinstating a supposed criminal and fugitive, Abdulrasheed Maina, to office instead of getting him arrested. Birds of a feather flock together.
“All people of good conscience will not forget in a hurry that Maina, who was given an assignment by the last administration of the PDP to superintend the now defunct Presidential Task Force on Pension Reforms, dipped his hands into the jar and helped himself to N100bn of what he was supposed to safeguard.
“With good conscience at fighting corruption, the PDP government then, mandated the anti-corruption agencies to perform their constitutional duty. Maina fled, only to resurface in the country four months ago under the Buhari administration.”
He added, “As a party of good conscience, we wish to condemn in strongest terms the penchant of the administration of President Buhari to giving safe haven to known criminals while hoodwinking Nigerians that it’s fighting corruption.”
Adeyeye also alleged that Maina had been paid N22m salary arrears by the Federal Government.
He said, “We are worried that the APC administration seem to have grown thick skins to constructive criticism; otherwise, no sane government, in spite of the open condemnation the party has received from Nigerians over its shielding of criminals, will repeat another one as done in the case of Maina.
“It is reported that the fugitive has been rewarded with payment of bogus salary arrears amounting to N22m, which he has reportedly collected upon approval and released by the Accountant General of the Federation. We dare the government of the day to deny this with verifiable evidence.”
The party equally demanded the immediate sacking of the Minister of Interior and the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice for complicity in Maina’s journey back into the system.
Meanwhile, the National President of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Ayuba Wabba, has commended President Muhammadu Buhari for ordering Maina’s immediate disengagement from service.
While commending President Buhari for acting promptly, Wabba said, “The manner of Mr. Maina’s re-engagement and posting as Director to the Ministry of Interior is an affront to law and procedure, insult to Nigerians and a mockery of Mr. President’s fight against corruption; indeed, it is the height of arrogance and impunity.”
The labour union also demanded a full investigation into the matter.