Nigerian police invade former governor Matawalle’s house to recover allegedly looted bulletproof vehicles worth over N2bn

The Nigerian Police Force (NPF) has invaded the home of the immediate past governor of Zamfara State, Bello Matawalle to recover looted bulletproof vehicles worth over N2bn.

This was disclosed by a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Femi Fani-Kayode, on Friday, who alleged that policemen invaded Matawalle’s residence in search of cars without an arrest warrant.

Recall that the incumbent governor Dauda Lawal in a statement issued on June 5, 2023, through his Chief Press Secretary, Sulaiman Bala Idris gave 5 days ultimatum to Matawalle to return bulletproof vehicles allegedly taken away by officials of his administration during his last days in office.

Dare said his predecessor and officials looted properties of the government including cars, television sets and cutlery.

He added that apart from the missing vehicles, Matawalle and his officials looted government funds and properties and he is determined to recover everything.

We have the facts and records available that expose Matawalle’s impropriety. A contract was awarded by the former governor, for the purchase of vehicles to be distributed to dignitaries and Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) at the cost of N1,149,800,000.

“The money was meant for the purchase of a Toyota Lexus VIP Bullet Proof 2021 Model; Toyota Land Cruiser VIP Bullet Proof 2021 Model; Toyota Prado V6 2021 Model; Toyota Prado V4 2021 Model; Peugeot 2021 Model; Toyota Hilux 2021 Model; Toyota Land Cruiser Bullet Proof 2021; and Toyota Lexus 2021 Model,” the statement said.

The Governor also alleged that on the 4th of October 2021, the former governor paid a contractor for the supply of three bulletproof Jeeps at the sum of N484,512, 500.

“Contract for the supply of seven sets of bulletproof Prado Jeeps and Land Cruiser at the sum of N459,995,000 was also paid for while the supply of seven Toyota Hilux vehicles at the sum of N228,830,000 was also awarded. On the 19th of May 2021, Matawalle paid for the supply of 30 sets of Peugeot 406 cars at the sum of N61,200,000.

“Also, on December 15, 2021, Matawalle allegedly paid for the supply of one bulletproof Land Cruiser for the sum of N130,000,000.

On February 26, 2022, Matawalle paid N160,000,000 for the supply of two Land Cruiser Jeeps 2021 model, while the sum of N120,000,000 was also paid for the supply of three vehicles for the office of the deputy governor”, according to the statement.

“It is the height of indignity for the Zamfara APC to continue to fizzle at a time when all the above official vehicles were looted by the immediate past government. None of the vehicles are available in the Government House.

“This is a show of shame, not only to the state chapter of the APC but to anyone justifying the action of Matawalle.

“We have communicated officially to former Governor Bello Matawalle and his Deputy to return all the missing vehicles within five working days,” the statement said.

However, condemning the police invasion, the former Aviation Minister said it was vindictive for Matawalle’s successor to allegedly send the officers on such an assignment.

He spoke while sharing photographs of the invasion via his Twitter handle.

According to Fani-Kayode, “This morning a detachment of policemen raided the home of my brother, the former Gov. of Zamfara state, Bello Matawalle in Maradun. They claimed to be looking for cars.

“They did not have a search or arrest warrant and they claimed to be acting on the orders of the new Governor. This is unacceptable. It is not only vindictive but also lawless and it stands condemned.”

By Temitope Hassan