Haliru Mohammed Bello

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Haliru Mohammed Bello
Chairman of the PDP Board of Trustees
Acting
In office
25 May 2015 – 10 February 2016
Preceded byAnthony Anenih
Succeeded byWalid Jibrin
Minister of Defense
In office
July 2011 – 22 June 2012
Preceded byAdetokunbo Kayode
Succeeded byErelu Olusola Obada
Federal Minister of Communications
In office
June 2001 – May 2003
Preceded byMohammed Arzika
Succeeded byCornelius Adebayo
Personal details
Born (1945-10-09) 9 October 1945 (age 73)
Birnin Kebbi, Kebbi, Nigeria
Political partyPeoples Democratic Party (PDP)

Haliru Mohammed Bello (born 9 October 1945) is a Nigerian politician. He was trained in veterinary medicine. He held various administrative positions under the military governments before 1999. He was Minister of Communications from June 2001 to May 2003. After he left office, he was indicted in a bribery scandal involving the German telecom company Siemens AG.

He was Defense Minister from July 2011 until June 2012. He was appointed the acting National Chairman of the People's Democratic Party of Nigeria on 25 May 2015.

Early years[edit]

Haliru Mohammed Bello was born in Birnin Kebbi, Kebbi State on 9 October 1945. After his primary education in Birnin Kebbi, he attended Government College, Zaria, now Berewa College. He was admitted to Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria in 1966, and studied veterinary medicine.

He became a lecturer at Ahmadu Bello University and a Fellow of the College of Veterinary Surgeons of Nigeria.[1]

In 1977 Mohammed was appointed Commissioner for Agriculture for Sokoto State under the military government of General Olusegun Obasanjo, and then Commissioner for Education for Sokoto State. After the return to civilian rule in 1979, Mohammed ran unsuccessfully for Deputy Governor of Sokoto State on the Great Nigeria People's Party (GNPP) platform. He was GNPP Secretary for Sokoto State until December 1983, when the military resumed power under Muhammadu Buhari and banned party politics. Mohammed worked for a private company, then was appointed first Assistant General Manager and then General Manager of the Rima River Basin and Rural Development Authority, a Federal Ministry of Water Resources agency.[1]

General Ibrahim Babangida appointed Haliru Mohammed as Comptroller General of the Nigerian Customs Service in 1988.[1] He was the first Comptroller General of the Customs and Excise department, then a service of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, under a new decentralized arrangement that began on 16 February 1988.[2] He held this post until 1994, when General Sani Abacha replaced him by Brigadier General S. O. G. Ango.

During the 1995-98 transition program, Mohammed was a founding member of the Democratic Party of Nigeria (DPN). After the death of Abacha, Mohammed was one of the founders of the People's Democratic Party (PDP) in Kebbi State.

In September 1999 President Olusegun Obasanjo appointed Mohammed as a Commissioner on the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission.[1]

Minister of Communications[edit]

Mohammed became the minister of Communications in June 2001 in a minor reshuffle of the cabinet of President Olusegun Obasanjo, replacing Mohammed Arzika. He was appointed at a time when the government was planning to privatise Nigerian Telecommunications Limited (NITEL).[3] In December 2001, Mohammed said that the regulator had been mistaken in revalidating the analog mobile licence granted to MTS First Mobile, which could interfere with plans for the nation's GSM network. He said the government was instead encouraging MTS to go into fixed and rural telephony.[4] In September 2002 Mohammed announced that 400,000 lines were being installed to expend NITEL's GSM network in the North-west zone.[5] In May 2003 Mohammed approved revised regulations for interconnection between telephone companies designed to foster competition.[6] Mohammed left office in May 2003.[1]

Subsequent bribery scandals[edit]

In 2007 a German court named several prominent Nigerians, including Mohammed, in a bribery scandal involving communications firm Siemens AG. Mohammed was alleged to have collected €70,000 in two installments, a charge that he denied.[7] In total, the court found that Siemens had paid out €12 million in bribes to obtain contracts in Nigeria and other countries, and fined the company €201 million.[8] In November 2007 the German authorities provided fresh information on the Siemens bribery scandal.[9]

The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) launched an investigation. President Umaru Yar'Adua said of the case "... there will neither be sacred cows nor a cover up for anybody found culpable of breaching the law".[10]

In January 2010 another scandal emerged over a N5 billion contract for supply of equipment to (M-tel), a subsidiary of NITEL. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) launched an investigation. In 2002 Mohammed had looked into complaints by Ericsson over the conduct of Motorola in trying to win a contract, and on the basis of his findings, the contract was awarded to Ericsson. Mohammed was not accused of wrongdoing in this case.[11]

Later career[edit]

PDP leader[edit]

In June 2004 Mohammed was elected as PDP National Vice Chairman for the North West Zone, which consisted of the states of Kaduna, Katsina, Kano, Kebbi, Sokoto, Jigawa and Zamfara.< In March 2008 Mohammed became Deputy National Chairman of the PDP.[1]

In August 2008, Mohammed received the Diamond Nigerian Telecoms Award at a ceremony in Lagos.[12] In January 2011 he was appointed Acting National Chairman of the PDP after Okwesilieze Nwodo was suspended by the Enugu High Court.

Mohammed supported a change to the PDP's zoning system so that President Goodluck Jonathan could run for reelection in 2011, rather than making a northerner the party's candidate. .[1]

Minister of Defense[edit]

Mohammed was Minister of Defense under President Goodluck Jonathan between 2011 and 2012.[13] He was removed on 22 June 2012 during a period of escalating security problems in the north including bomb attacks by Boko Haram extremists.[14]

Acting Chairman of the PDP[edit]

Following the resignation of PDP Board of Trustees (BOT) Chairman, Anthony Anenih, the BOT appointed Haliru Mohammed as its Acting Chairman. Mohammed’s nomination was endorsed on 25 May 2015 by the BOT at a meeting at the Aso Rock presidential villa in Abuja. The decision was unexpected, as Anenih had said he was resigning so that Jonathan could take the post.[13] On 10 February 2016, Bello was relieved of his duty after it was revealed that he was being prosecuted in connection with the alleged diversion of arms procurement funds.[15]

Controversy[edit]

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has already filed charges against him for their alleged role in the diversion of funds meant for the procurement of arms in the office of the National Security Adviser.[16]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g "BELLO HALIRU MOHAMMED; IN THE EYE OF THE STORM". Flashpoint News. 23 June 2012. Retrieved 2015-05-27.
  2. ^ "Brief History of NCS". Nigeria Customs Service. Retrieved 2015-05-27.
  3. ^ "PDP's Men of Power". ThisDay. 2001-11-10. Archived from the original on 2005-12-02. Retrieved 2010-04-22.
  4. ^ Tayo Ajakaye (2001-12-11). "MTS Licence Revalidation A Mistake - Minister". ThisDay. Archived from the original on 2005-11-22. Retrieved 2010-04-22.
  5. ^ "400,000 NITEL GSM Lines Ready By December - Minister". This Day. September 17, 2002. Retrieved 2010-04-22.
  6. ^ "Telecommunications Networks Interconnections Regulations" (PDF). Nigerian Communications Commission. 20 May 2003. Retrieved 2010-04-22.[permanent dead link]
  7. ^ Jide Babalola; Dayo Thomas; EMMANUEL ONYECHE; NIYI ODEBODE; Jonah Iboma (18 Nov 2007). "Siemens scandal: Nigerians call for probe". The Punch. Archived from the original on 2007-12-21. Retrieved 2010-04-22.
  8. ^ Angela Jameson (November 16, 2007). "Siemens bribes reached around world". Times Online.
  9. ^ Jide Babalola (26 November 2007). "ICPC receives fresh facts on Siemens scandal". ICPC NEWS. Independent Corrupt Practices Commission. Retrieved 2010-04-22.[permanent dead link]
  10. ^ "Nigeria probes Siemens bribe case". BBC News. 21 November 2007. Retrieved 2010-04-22.
  11. ^ Yusuf Alli (2010-01-07). "Atiku's ex-ADC in row over N5b deal". The Nation. Archived from the original on 2010-01-11.
  12. ^ "Biodun Ajiboye - Phone Companies Don't Respect Consumers". ThisDay. 2 August 2008. Retrieved 2010-04-22.
  13. ^ a b "Indicted Ex-Minister, Haliru Mohammed, returns as PDP's BoT Acting Chairman". Premium Times. 25 May 2015. Retrieved 2015-05-27.
  14. ^ Leon Usigbe (23 June 2012). "BOKO HARAM: Azazi, Bello Booted Out •Sambo Dasuki Now New NSA". Nigerian Tribune. Abuja. Archived from the original on 24 June 2012. Retrieved 2012-06-22.
  15. ^ "PDP sacks Bello, appoints Senator Jibrin as acting BoT chairman". Daily Post. 10 February 2016. Retrieved 14 February 2016.
  16. ^ {{cite news|title=PDP sacks Bello, appoints Senator Jibrin as acting BoT chairman|url=https://www.premiumtimesng.com/news/headlines/195756-2-1bn-arms-scandal-efcc-files-charges-against-former-pdp-chairman-haliru-mohammed-son.html%7Caccessdate=26 December 2015|work=Premium Times Ng|date=26 December 2015}
Party political offices
Preceded by
Okwesilieze Nwodo
Chairperson of the National Working Committee
Acting

2010
Succeeded by
Kawu Baraje