Politics

Media tricks will not stop your prosecution, EFCC tells Saraki

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Sunday said it will not be deterred by any media campaign in its bid to ensure that the former Senate President, Bukola Saraki is prosecuted.

The spokesman of the commission, Tony Orilade, revealed this in Abuja on Sunday.

Orilade, alleged that Saraki had made several false claims in the media in order to divert attention from on-going investigations into his misdeeds while in office.

“He seems to have chosen outside the shores of Nigeria as the launch pad of his campaign of calumny against the EFCC and its leadership.

“We wish to state without any contradiction that the ongoing investigation against the former Senate president and other Politically-exposed Persons (PeP) are on course, while Saraki and his co-travellers will surely have their day in court shortly.

“Particularly, of reference is the report published in the Punch Newspaper of Sunday, June 30, 2019 entitled, “Magu begged me to help his confirmation by the Senate, Saraki tells CJ Kafarati,” he said.

He added, “Saraki deviously chose to divert attention from the weighty allegations of financial fraud trailing his eight years stewardship in Kwara and leadership of the Senate.

“Instead, he is coming up with mendacious reasons on why the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court should ignore the request of the EFCC, seeking the transfer of its cases from Justice Taiwo Taiwo who curiously granted ex-parte order to restrain the commission from performing its statutory duties.”

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Going further, Orilade maintained that EFCC had filed a detailed response against the judge’s restraining order and took up issues over the controversial interim order.

“While waiting for the careful response of the CJ over the commission’s request, we wish to advise ex-president of the senate to carry his cross and allow the judiciary to perform its constitutional role,” he added.

The statement read in part:
“It is too late for him in the day, to be claiming innocence over the confirmation saga when every Nigerian knew what transpired under his watch.

“The Commission under Magu, has moved on and will not be distracted over mundane issues.

“Let it be stated in unequivocal terms that the investigation of Saraki’s stewardship, whether as a former president of the senate or as a former governor of Kwara, has absolutely nothing to do with the non-confirmation of Mr Ibrahim Magu as the substantive Chairman of the EFCC.

“While the EFCC will not allow itself to be drawn by Saraki to take up issues with him on the pages of newspapers, it is pertinent to once again state in clear terms that the probes being carried out by the EFCC are nothing personal.

“They are all about enthroning probity in governance, and letting leaders know that even out of office, they will be held accountable for their stewardship.

“Again, it is worth reminding Saraki that he has no need to be scared of the EFCC and its leadership as long as he believes he has a clear conscience.”

Recall that a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja had deferred hearing on the fundamental right enforcement suits filed by Saraki. He filed the suits to stop the EFCC from re-opening investigation against him.

The suits were originally scheduled for hearing on Monday, June 24, but were, however, adjourned till July 2 to await the outcome of a petition the EFCC lodged against Justice Taiwo Taiwo who is presiding over the matter.

Keyword: Persecution

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