Despite leaving the stage, there is high demand by Nigerians for asset declaration forms of former Presidents and Heads of State, serving and ex-governors from the Code of Conduct Bureau.
Those most affected are ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo, former President Goodluck Jonathan, ex-President Ibrahim Babangida, and ex-Head of State, Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar.
The battle to have a peep at the assets of President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo is also ongoing in court.
The bureau, however, said the National Assembly has not put guidelines in place on how Nigerians can have access to the asset forms of the ex-leaders.
It said it can only release asset forms to statutory public bodies or departments like security agencies, investigating agencies (like ICPC and EFCC) and the court.
Also, vice-chancellors of universities, rectors of polytechnics, provosts of colleges of education and public officers from Assistant Director and above are now expected to declare their assets.
The Chairman of CCB, Prof. Muhammed Isah, made the disclosures in an exclusive interview with our correspondent.
Isah said: “We have a high demand for the asset declaration forms of all the former Presidents and Heads of State and governors. We cannot release the asset forms of these past public officers because the guidelines for releasing such have not been put in place by the National Assembly.
“We even have a case in court on this demand which we are trying to defend. It is not about protecting these past leaders, but it is about the law and compliance with the provisions of the 1999 Constitution.
“We do release asset forms to public institutions like EFCC, ICPC, the court and security agencies. For instance, a High Court in Kaduna State recently asked for the Asset Declaration Form of Governor Nasir el-Rufai and we submitted it
Asked why more Nigerians are interested in the asset forms of past leaders, Isah simply added: “I don’t know their intention for it.”
He said the bureau was working on the amendment of the CCB Act to enable Nigerians to have access to asset forms.
“We are working on amending the Act of the CCB. Until the Act is amended as part of the next Constitution amendment, we cannot do anything now. If the amendment is done, there is a possibility of getting the guidelines to have access to asset forms of public officers.”