Shocking! How Buhari’s top confidant funded the president’s campaign

Oando is one of Nigeria’s biggest independent conglomerate in the energy industry, including petroleum products marketing, supply & trading, exploration and production, and gas distribution. It is also the first Nigerian company to achieve a double dual listing on both the Nigerian and South African Stock Exchanges. Oando is Nigeria’s largest indigenous oil company. Bola Tinubu AKA Jagaban owns majority shares in Oando.

Wale Tinubu, a nephew to Bola Tinubu, is the Group Chief Executive of Oando while and Omamofe Boyo is his deputy. Boyo was the same fellow Tinubu was fronting as Group GMD for NNPC. Buhari turned down that suggestion. Whereas shareholders of Oando PLC lost share values, the Tinubu’s grew richer as they had for years incorporated and operated a cluster of shell companies in notorious offshore jurisdictions. This act contravenes the constitution. Details of Tinubu’s offshore assets which he failed to declare like Saraki, were included in the massive leak from a Panamanian law firm, Mossack Fonseca.

Papers from the leaked documents revealed how Tinubu operates more than 10 offshore companies in tax havens such as Seychelles and the British Virgin Islands. The documents demonstrated Tinubu’s sole ownership of the following companies: Technology Inc.; Techventure Inc. Anglesey Management SA; Caine Trading Corp; Keligh Engineering Corp; Hud Trading Corps; Meridian Procurement International Services Ltd; Lynx Shipping Ltd; Equinox Shipping Limited; Everglade Oil Inc.; Framlingham Limited; and Triton Trading Limited.

Recall that it was this same Mossack Fonseca that aided the former governor of Delta State, Ibori to launder funds. Ibori is currently serving a jail term of 13 years in United Kingdom. According to an online news portal, Thisdaylive, “Just like Ibori, the Oando boss secured the services of Swiss asset management firm, Clamorgan SA, to help him incorporate Techventure Inc., Anglesey Management SA, Caine Trading Corp and Keligh Engineering in Seychelles while appointing Mossack Fonseca Geneva as registered agent and administrator for the shell companies.”

It is curiously surprising how and why Tinubu engaged the services of the same offshore consultants used by Ibori to run his offshore companies. Recall that during his trial, Ibori confessed to British prosecutors that he owned “significant” shares in Oando Plc which amounted to 30% of the company’s traded assets. Oando swiftly denied Ibori’s claims stating that Ibori only owned 443 shares of the company’s 6.8 billion ordinary shares.

An email sent to an employee of Mossack Fonseca in Geneva, one Marie-Ange, revealed that Tinubu hired a front, Patrick Bastin, to act on his behalf in his offshore companies. “It is agreed that M. Patrick Bastin will be acting as a director for certain of Mr J.A. Tinubu companies and in this capacity will be managing all upcoming administrative commercial and financial tasks, inclusive the relationship with the several banks the companies may have bank accounts with,” the email read.

“The account of EVERGLADE OIL INC No 239783 with Audi Saradar Private Bank seal in Beirut Lebanon will be responsible to set up a standing instruction for those payments to start on November 1 -2008. In addition, M. Patrick Bastin will be entitled to a Corporate Visa card from Everglade Oil Inc for expenses up to SS 10,000 per month to be justified after to M. J A Tinubu. This agreement can be terminated at any moment by M. JA. Tinubu with one month notice,” the email stated.

It is believed that Tinubu funded most of Buhari’s campaign and aided in his accent as the Nigerian President. Curiously, Ibori is in prison, Saraki is tried for similar offences, while Bola Ahmed Tinubu walks free. Will Buhari turn against his sponsors for milking Nigeria and failure to declare their assets while they served as Governors too? His silence indicts his anticorruption stance.