An investigation into the disappearance of 6.8 million naira (US$22,000) from a zoo in northern Nigeria concluded that the money in question was taken by armed robbers – but not eaten by a gorilla as widely reported in local newspapers.
Abdullahi Ganduje, the governor of northern Kano state, had ordered the state’s anti-corruption commission to look into the disappearance of gate fees at the Kano Zoological Gardens.
Nigeria has for years been plagued by corruption and forms of banditry ranging from armed robberies to kidnapping for ransom. President Muhammadu Buhari had pledged to improve security and crack down on graft.
“Preliminary reports indicate that there was armed robbery at the zoo,” Ganduje told reporters after meeting Buhari together with other governors in the capital, Abuja.
“The issue of (a) gorilla is junk journalism,” he said. “This is because there is no gorilla in that zoo.”
A gorilla in a public zoo in Nigeria became the focal point of public discussion when reports suggested that the animal had swallowed funds meant for the zoo.
The gorilla is said to have swallowed 6.8 million naira (equivalent to over US$19,000). The monies in question are gate fees collected by patrons of the zoo especially during the recent Eid-ul-Fitr festivities early this month.
The head of the zoo and police late last week confirmed the incident that the police have begun investigating what happened.
The State Kovernor, Abdullahi Ganduje ordered the anti-corruption commission to open a probe into the issue.
Last year, a Nigerian sales clerk was suspended after telling auditors that 36 million naira had been eaten by a snake.