- Insist on Investigating them
Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has rejected the request by some embattled former governors who are accused of money laundering and other financial crimes to refund their alleged stolen funds to their states’ treasuries and be allowed to go free.
A highly placed source at the commission told Nigerian Pilot Sunday, at the weekend, that counsel to one of the embattled former governors from the South-South zone, had allegedly approached the chairman of EFCC, Ibrahim Lamorde, with the proposal, but was vehemently opposed.
According to the source, the proposal presented to the commission was to allow the embattled Governor return the said amount he is under investigated for and in turn be left off the hook.
However, the EFCC boss rejected the proposal and insisted that he will go ahead with the investigation and pending petitions against any governor currently under probe.
Barely three days ago, the anti-graft agency quizzed immediate past governor of Jigawa State, Alhaji Sule Lamido, over allegations of money laundering for which his son was tried and subsequently convicted.
Similarly, the commission arrested former Imo State governor, Ihedi Ohakim, who failed to show up at the EFCC office, on Wednesday last week, to clarify some issues in a probe of his administration.
Ohakim was the governor of Imo State between 2007 and 2011, before he lost to the incumbent governor, Rochas Okorocha.
Ohakim, who was scheduled to visit the Abuja headquarters of the commission, was summoned to answer questions in an ongoing investigation into allegations of corruption and embezzlement by his government to the tune of N20 billion before he was eventually picked from his residence in Asokoro, on Thursday last week.
For former Jigawa State governor, he was grilled over his alleged role in the looting of the state’s treasury by his two sons to the tune of over N150 billion.
Similarly, a former governor of Ebonyi State, Martin Elechi, was interrogated for two days by the operatives over the allegation misappropriation of funds by his government.
Elechi, who left the commission around 4.30pm, Wednesday last week is expected to visit again this week.
The EFCC spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren, confirmed to this paper that Ohakim and Lamido were with a crack team of EFCC investigators for interactions.
Uwujaren further added that Elechi was again interrogated, adding that he may be needed for further questioning this week.
He stated that Ikedi Ohakim was shedding light on issues in an old case being investigated by the anti-graft agency.
Meanwhile, the second batch of former governors that will be guests of the commission are: former governor of Kano State, Sen. Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso; former governor of Akwa Ibom sState, Sen. Godswill Akpabio; former governor of Abia State, Sen. Theodore Orji and former governor of Niger State, Dr. Babangida Aliyu.
A highly placed source at the commission told this paper that their letters of invitation would be officially dispatched before Tuesday, this week.
It would be recalled that the anti-graft agency is probing immediate past governors for allegedly looting their various states’ treasuries.
The breakdown, which cuts across states from the six geopolitical zones, is put at over N1.39 trillion.