Kashamu petitions EFCC over alleged multi-billion naira tax fraud by Baba Ijebu

Buruji Kashamu

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has begun investigating a case of alleged tax fraud on Premier Lotto, also known as Baba Ijebu, a betting company owned by Kessington Adebutu.

The billionaire’s son, Segun Adebutu, was questioned on Tuesday at the EFCC office in Lagos on issues relating to alleged tax fraud and economic sabotage, Premium Times reports.

The anti-graft agency took note of Adebutu’s company following a petition last December by another betting company, Western Lotto, owned by politician Buruji Kashamu.

The news platform said EFCC officials have since discovered at least N5 billion in revenue losses against the government.

Kashamu told the news platform that he was not treating the matter as a fight against his competitor.

“All the taxpayers’ billions they diverted should have been paid into the lottery commission trust fund to build infrastructure and alleviate poverty amongst the Nigerian masses,” he said.

“I urge Nigerians to continue to pressure the EFCC to investigate and charge all those responsible for sabotaging the country’s economy without any pity for the masses.”

Mr Adebutu did not return request for comments on the ongoing investigation. Officials at Premier Lotto office in Abuja declined comments. EFCC spokesman, Tony Orilade, also did not immediately return a request for comments.

The investigation into Adebutu’s company is said to have opened the door to probe the finances of other betting companies.

Officials at the lottery commission have been notified of the raging investigation, with concerned companies already asked to submit their financial records to anti-graft detectives in Lagos and Abuja.

An official who pleaded not to be named said Kashamu’s petition could have been triggered by his claims of having sole rights to ‘Ghana Games’ in Nigeria.

The official said an association of betting companies is considering meeting to form a coordinated response to the industry-wide investigation.