Abdul'aziz Abubakar Yari

Alhaji Abdul'aziz Abubakar Yari (born 28 January 1968) is a Nigerian politician who was elected Governor of Zamfara State in the 26 April 2011 national election, running on the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) platform. Following the merger of the ANPP and several other opposition parties into the now-governing All Progressives Congress, Yari became a member of the All Progressives Congress.[1]

Abdul'aziz Abubakar Yari
Senator for Zamfara West
Assumed office
13 June 2023
Preceded byLawali Hassan Anka
4th Governor of Zamfara State
In office
29 May 2011 – 29 May 2019
Preceded byMahmud Shinkafi
Succeeded byBello Matawalle
Personal details
Born (1968-01-28) 28 January 1968 (age 56)
Talata Mafara, North-Western State, Nigeria (now in Zamfara State, Nigeria)
Political partyAll Progressives Congress



He attended Talata Mafara Township Primary School, then proceeded to Government Teacher's College in Bakura from 1979 to 1984. He finished his tertiary education at Sokoto Polytechnic from 1991 to 1994 where he obtained a certificate and later a Diploma in Secretarial Studies in 2004. He also attended Kebbi Polytechnic for a Graduate Diploma in Public Administration in 2008.[2]

Political career


Yari began his political career in 1999 when he served as the Secretary of the then All Nigeria People's Party (ANPP) between 1999 and 2003. He was elected Chairman of ANPP Zamfara State in 2003 and later rose to the position of ANPP National Financial Secretary and served in this position till 2007 when he was elected as Member representing Anka/Talata Mafara Federal Constituency from 2007 to 2011.

On April 26, 2011, Abdul-aziz Yari Abubakar was elected Governor of Zamfara State on the platform of the All Nigeria Peoples Party(ANPP).

Again in the 2015 gubernatorial elections, he was re-elected as Governor under the platform of the All Progressive Congress (APC).

On May 18, 2015, Honorable Yari's colleagues in the Nigeria Governors’ Forum unanimously elected him as their Chairman, succeeding Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi.[3]

In addition, when Zamfara State Governor Mahmud Shinkafi defected to the PDP in January 2009, taking the ANPP's state executive committee with him, the ANPP's National Headquarters in Abuja was forced to create a Caretaker Committee headed by Yari. The committee's tenure was repeatedly extended.[4]

Yari was elected Governor of Zamfara State, Nigeria in the 26 April 2011 national elections, running on the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) platform. Similarly, Yari is the son-in-law of incumbent Governor Mahmud Aliyu Shinkafi of the People's Democratic Party (PDP), whom he defeated in the election by 514,962 votes to Shinkafi's 460,656 votes.[5] He said concerning the 2019 election that it is time to repay Buhari's bailout gesture.[6]

Senate race (2019)


As his term of office as governor of Zamfara State drew to a close Yari ran for the Zamfara West senate seat and won with a very wide margin[7][8] on the platform of the ruling APC. But his election and other APC candidates in the 2019 general election in Zamfara State were nullified by the Supreme Court on the ground that they were not validly nominated through party primaries.[9][10] The court ordered INEC to declare candidates who were the second runner-up in the elections winners. Senator Kabiru Marafa, a member of APC who was running for governorship tick of the APC had complained that APC did not conduct primaries in Zamfara and asked the court to invalidate the primaries purportedly conducted by the leader of the party Yari of the APC.[11][12][13]

Yari was named the chairman, Senate committee on water resources of the 10th senate on 8 August 2023.[14]

Corruption allegations


Projects Verification Committee reports


Yari's successor, Bello Matawalle, created the Zamfara State Project Verification Committee led by Ahmad Zabarma to probe projects under Yari's governorship. In February 2020, at the Committee interim report press conference, Zabarma announced that the Yari administration had spent a suspiciously inflated amount on incomplete or yet-to-be-started projects. Zabarma claimed ₦3 billion was spent on the ongoing Zamfara State University project and ₦70 billion was spent on the House of Assembly renovation despite the University being only 30% completed and the House of Assembly renovation having not started at all. Zabarma also stated that ₦35 million was not refunded to Hajj pilgrims who could not be airlifted in 2012, over 1,000 vehicles belonging to the State Government (65% of its total vehicles) were missing after Yari left office, and ₦8.4 billion of state money was spent by Yari on exotic cars for associates and family along with several other cases of alleged corrupt practices using feeding programs, schools, water supply, and other projects.[15][16][17] Yari claimed political persecution by his successor, Matawalle, against himself and the Zamfara APC.[18]

The Project Verification Committee released its final report in late September which Matawalle claimed showed that Yari's administration had stole over ₦107 billion from the state.[19] In early October, Matawalle set up a Commission of Inquiry to further probe the Yari administration. [20][21]

Federal Project Refund scandal


After Yari left office, his successor, Bello Matawalle announced investigations into allegations of corruption during Yari's administration. In September 2020, Matawalle's Finance Commissioner Rabiu Garba claimed Yari and an associate diverted ₦37 billion in refunds on federal projects away from state government coffers. Yari's Finance Commissioner Muktar Idris denied the accusation and claimed that the money was used on building roads.[22][23]

EFAB Properties wire transfer


In February 2021, the Peoples Gazette reported that on the day before Yari left the Governor's office, he wired ₦350 million to EFAB Properties Limited, a real estate developer based in Abuja. The EFAB account is also linked to Fabian Nwaora, a public works contractor and real estate developer. The report quoted anonymous EFCC officials who claimed the commission was investigating numerous last-minute transfers by Yari, but had not seen the EFAB Properties transfer. The report also claimed that Yari was so notoriously corrupt that he was nicknamed the "loaded governor" by officials at the Nigerian Governors’ Forum which Yari chaired.[24]

EFCC investigations and arrests


In February and April 2021, Yari was detained and interrogated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in connection with around ₦300 billions he attempted to move from a corporate bank account. In the invitation letter sent to Yari to summon him for the April interrogation, the EFCC Director of Operations, Abdulkarim Chukkol, stated "conspiracy, diversion of public funds and money laundering" as the grounds for the interview. Sahara Reporters reported that the EFCC is also investigating Yari in connection with the alleged Paris Club refund corruption case involving the Central Bank of Nigeria, Attorney-General Abubakar Malami, Chief of Staff to the President Ibrahim Gambari, and former Representative Ned Nwoko.[25]

ICPC investigations and seizures


The Independent Corrupt Practices Commission also accused Yari of corruption, specifically embezzling money from the Zamfara State treasury. In January 2021, Yari lost a court case that approved the seizure of $669,248 and over ₦24.3 million from him with the judge siding with the ICPC's argument that Yari was unable to explain the sources of the funds and thus the money was subject to forfeiture.[26]

In February 2022, the ICPC won another case against Yari, this time for the interim forfeiture of 10 properties in Abuja, Kaduna, and Zamfara State along with Maryland in the United States of America. The judge stated that the interim order would last 60 days while the ICPC investigated further with the hearing on final forfeiture scheduled for April 28.[27]


  1. ^ Sahara Reporters (16 June 2018). "Zamfara Governor Resigns As Chief Security Officer Of State". Sahara Reporters. New York. Retrieved 19 January 2020.
  2. ^ "The Chairman Nigeria Governors' Forum". Nigeria Governors' Forum. Retrieved 12 April 2017.
  3. ^ Muhammad Sabiu (18 September 2010). "2011: As Opposition Changes Face In Zamfara". Nigerian Tribune. Archived from the original on 14 March 2012. Retrieved 29 April 2011.
  4. ^ Muhammed Sabiu (16 May 2010). "Zamfara ANPP and its divided house". Sunday Tribune. Archived from the original on 14 March 2012. Retrieved 29 April 2011.
  5. ^ Bunmi Awolusi (29 April 2011). "Kaduna, Bauchi hold peaceful elections". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 2 May 2011. Retrieved 29 April 2011.
  6. ^ Television, Oak (23 January 2019). "2019 Presidency: Time to repay Buhari's bailout gesture, says Gov. Abdulaziz Yari". Oak TV. oak tv. Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  7. ^ Erezi, Dennis (10 September 2018). "Zamfara governor Yari declares to run for Senate". The Guardian. Retrieved 14 December 2020.
  8. ^ Talata-Mafara (25 February 2019). "Abdula'ziz Yari wins Zamfara West Senate Seat". Vanguard. Zamfara. Retrieved 14 February 2020.
  9. ^ Adesomoju, Ade (24 May 2019). "Supreme Court nullifies APC candidates' elections, declares PDP winner of Zamfara polls". The Punch. Retrieved 14 February 2020.
  10. ^ Alade, Abiodun (24 May 2019). "Supreme Court sacks Governor-elect, Yari, others as PDP set to take over Zamfara + VIDEO". Daily Trust. Retrieved 13 March 2022.
  11. ^ Our Correspondent (1 April 2019). "APC Senator Marafa Insists Party Didn't Conduct Primaries In Zamfara". Independent Nigeria. Retrieved 13 March 2022.
  12. ^ Ailemen, Tony (31 March 2019). "APC did not Conduct primaries in Zamfara – Marafa insists". Business Day. Abuja. Retrieved 14 February 2020.
  13. ^ Elumoye, Deji (25 March 2019). "Zamfara APC Primaries: Appeal Court Has Vindicated Me, Says Marafa". ThisDay. Abuja. Retrieved 13 March 2022.
  14. ^ "Lawan, Yari, Tambuwal, Oshiomhole, Sani Musa, Others Emerge Senate Committee Chairmen - THISDAYLIVE". www.thisdaylive.com. Retrieved 8 August 2023.
  15. ^ News Agency of Nigeria (12 February 2020). "Zamfara ex-Gov, Yari expends N3bn on state university project ―Committee". Vanguard (Press release). Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  16. ^ News Agency of Nigeria (12 February 2020). "Yari expends N3 billion on state university project – Committee". Pulse Nigeria (Press release). Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  17. ^ Hassan, Maryam (11 February 2020). "Matawalle uncovers 100 exotic cars worth N8.4bn allegedly diverted by Yari in Zamfara". Daily Nigerian. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  18. ^ Abuh, Adamu (25 September 2020). "Yari kicks over alleged political witch-hunt, indictment over misuse of N90 billion". The Guardian. Abuja. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  19. ^ Oluwasanjo, Ahmed (1 October 2020). "How Yari stole N107 billion from Zamfara State: Gov. Matawalle". Peoples Gazette. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  20. ^ Kwaifa, Aliyu (2 October 2020). "Matawalle Sets Up Inquiry Panel Over N107bn Contracts". Daily Trust. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  21. ^ Abdulaziz, Abdulaziz (1 October 2020). "N107bn: Zamfara sets up panel to probe ex-governor Yari over alleged misappropriation". Premium Times. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  22. ^ News Agency of Nigeria (23 September 2020). "How Yari, girlfriend mismanaged N37bn federal project refund: Zamfara govt". Peoples Gazette. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  23. ^ Agency Report. "Zamfara govt, ex-gov Yari disagree over N37 billion FG refund". Premium Times. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  24. ^ Princewill, Nimi (4 February 2021). "EXCLUSIVE: Bank documents expose how ex-Zamfara Governor Yari wired N350m to EFAB Estate hours before leaving office". Peoples Gazette. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  25. ^ Sahara Reporters (26 April 2021). "EXPOSED: Real Reasons Why Ex-Zamfara Governor, Yari Was Detained, Grilled For Seven Hours By EFCC". Sahara Reporters. New York. Retrieved 27 May 2021.
  26. ^ Olabimtan, Bolanle (26 January 2021). "Court orders final forfeiture of $669,248 linked to Yari". TheCable. Retrieved 24 February 2022.
  27. ^ Olabimtan, Bolanle (23 February 2022). "Court orders interim forfeiture of 10 properties linked to Yari". TheCable. Retrieved 24 February 2022.