The Board of Trustees of Nigeria’s ruling party, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has appointed a former acting national Chairman of the party, and ex-defence minister, Haliru Mohammed, as its acting Chairman. Mr. Mohammed’s nomination was endorsed Monday night by the PDP’s BoT at a meeting at the Aso Rock presidential villa, Abuja. Mr. Mohammed emerged against widespread belief that President Goodluck Jonathan would be assuming the position as he leaves office Friday.
Outgone Chairman of the BOT, Tony Anenih, had, while resigning last week, said he was vacating the office to allow Mr. Jonathan to assume the post. A former Customs officer, Mr. Mohammed served as a Commissioner, Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission in 1999, and later as Minister of Communication in 2001 under the Olusegun Obasanjo government.
He later became the National Vice Chairman of the PDP, North West Zone. In March 2008, he became the Deputy National Chairman of the Party and Acting National Chairman in 2010. Mr. Mohammed was appointed defence minister by President Goodluck Jonathan between 2011 and 2012. Lately, he was appointed by Mr. Jonathan to oversee his declaration for re-election. Mr. Mohammed was named in 2007 by German investigators as one of several Nigerian officials who received bribes from that country’s telecoms company, Siemens.
In its October 4, 2007 ruling against Siemen AG, the Munich State Court named Mr. Mohammed as one of the recipients of 77 hefty bribes paid by Siemen officials in three countries- Nigeria, Russia and Libya. The court said as minister, Mr. Mohammed received 550,000 euros in kickback in July 2002 and another 150,000 euros in August 2003.