A Group of Civil Society organisation has expressed their determinations to rescue the Muhammadu Buhari’s Anti-Corruption War from ridiculed by some Corrupt Agencies in order to Save Nigeria from total collapse.
In a statement by the convener/Executive coordinator of ‘I BELONG TO NIGERIA’, Chief James Ezema, told Journalists that, “Nigeria as a country is in dare need of urgent rescue from the powerful forces holding her captive over the years.”
According to him, there was the hope of getting things right after the election of President Muhammadu Buhari in 2015, particularly based on his antecedents as a no nonsense anti-graft posture as promised during the electioneering campaign in which he said that anti corruption war would be given top priority by his government. As a matter of fact, no doubt Buhari has got it right when he launched the anti-graft campaign upon assumption of office.
However, ‘recent events has shown that some powerful corrupt forces within and embedded in this Administration, have not only permeated some anti-graft agencies but have hijacked the war on Anti-corruption and today ‘the hunters have vividly become the hunted’, while the forces of corruption within and outside Government are now Re-looting and sharing the recovered loots.’ he said.
The group affirmed that as responsible organization it will continue to serve as watchdog and also support the fight against corrupt elements to make sure that the commonwealth of the nation would not continue to be re-looted by those who should have been at the forefront of recovering looted funds and assets.
Recalls that recently, President Muhammadu Buhari ordered the audit of 222 properties comprising of residential and commercial properties in several parts of the country, which was earlier recovered by the Abdulrasheed Maina led Presidential Task Team on Pension Reforms ,and handed over to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Stressed that barely 24 hours after, the President constituted a committee to audit assets recovered by the Maina’s team, but were being shared and sold at far below market value to some government officials and their cronies, other top Government operatives are also busy recently manufacturing the documents used to make these transactions.
Worthy of note is the fact that the EFCC having 47 members was part of the Dr Maina-led Pension Taskforce Team and the said recovered properties were handed over to the EFCC by the Team.
However, shocking as it was, the EFCC under its Acting Chairman Ibrahim Magu, initially categorically denied the existence of the 222 properties and other assets handed to it by the Maina’s Taskforce Team.
“For avoidance of doubt, there are no such 222 properties anywhere that were recovered or shared by anybody. The EFCC DID NOT RECEIVE A SINGLE PROPERTY from Maina.” the EFCC said.
The group alleged that the EFCC has not only lied on these matter under Oath, but has also proven to be an accomplice in the pension fraud and the alleged sharing of assets recovered from suspected pension thieves by the Abdulrasheed Maina Taskforce Team.
The shameless lies by the EFCC Boss , has now shown itself to be in control of the Government. Before now, the Magu-led EFCC was revered as a thorough anti-graft agency but the denial of the recovered pension assets and documented evidences showing dirty deals by Magu and his cronies, has exposed the Commission as an accomplice in the pension fraud.
More so, in a recent petition to the Senate by the Chairman of George Uboh Whistleblower Network, Dr. George Uboh, he unambiguously accused the EFCC of re-looting over N2.112 trillion recovered from looters by failing to remit the money to the federal government’s treasury. This is the EFCC that is supposed to fighting corruption being fingered in looting of recovered funds and assets in its possession.
Now, for the avoidance of doubt, the EFCC and the ICPC have the statutory powers to bank and take over custody of any recovered assets and that was why the Maina Taskforce Team, which the EFCC was part of, handed over the recovered assets from suspected pension thieves to the commission. The ICPC has not denied these assertions and infact the ICPC is said to have remmitted funds under it’s custody, but credible reports oozing out of the EFCC shows that these recovered loots have been RELOOTED.
More worrisome is that, the denial of the recovery by the EFCC speaks volume. It tells Nigerians that the EFCC as constituted today is following tradition of re-looting of recovered loots from suspected fraudsters. It also tells the Nigerian people that the EFCC will not give account of all recovered assets in its possession, since no other agency if Government has the power to purge it. This is democracy and and rule of law being tested by the Magu led EFCC.
The group made recourse to the petition by Dr. George Uboh, that it was not only the assets recovered by Maina-led Team that EFCC over the years has failed to account for. Therefore generally question the EFCC for not been able to satisfactorily account for other hundreds of billions of Naira worth of assets it recovered from former IGP Tafa Balogun, Nwude Emmanuel, DSP Alamieyesigha, Lucky Igbinedion, Edwin Antas and Samuel Omemehin, among others. These ugly situation has made both international partners to start questioning the sincerity of this Administration in its fight against corruption, which could be dangerous for the Country .
Therefore, as a matter of urgent national importance has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately order the EFCC to hands off all investigation relating to pension fraud, since the Commission has been indicted and obviously indicted itself in the alleged sharing of the looted funds -and direct the Attorney General of the Federation to institute an independent panel of enquiry with no police involved (police pension part of the STEALLING) to start the investigation from scratch in order to ascertain the level of impunity in the system.