The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governors on Saturday cautioned the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on the harassment of opposition parties and their officials over phoney allegations.
The governors were reacting to the commission’s invitation of some officials of the PDP over alleged misappropriation of N10billion realized by the party from sale of nomination forms in 2019.
In a statement signed by the Director-General of the PDP Governors’ Forum, Cyril “CID” Maduabum, the governors stressed that the commission should not be used to cow the opposition.
The statement read: “The recent invitation of officials of the PDP by the EFCC acting on a spurious petition by a disgruntled former member of PDP raises questions on the seriousness and impartiality of the anti-graft agency to do its work.
“While PDP as a political party is accountable to its members and the general public for its actions, we are, however, concerned that the old tactics of using the EFCC to silence political opposition is creeping into our polity once again. We had expected that the EFCC under a new leadership will learn from the mistakes of its predecessors.
“It is a misplaced priority for EFCC to abandon revelations of monumental fraud by various officials and agencies of the federal government to pursue the PDP which is the main opposition party doing a yeoman’s job of preventing the descent into chaos and anarchy in Nigeria.
“Perhaps, certain interests in government are worried about the increasingly assertive role the PDP is playing in calling out corruption in government and wants to weaken and silence it.
“Even the petition in question did not make a single allegation of misuse of government funds nor cheating of any individual or public authority by the PDP. It is therefore surprising that EFCC should use its scarce human and other resources to begin an investigation into PDP finances.
“If EFCC is even-handed and non-partisan, it should also conduct an investigation into other political parties including APC, the ruling party.
“PDP is up to date in making financial returns as required by the constitution to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and we are not aware that INEC made any complaints to EFCC on PDP’s returns.
“The times are really perilous. We face existential threats as a nation and PDP shouldn’t be distracted from its main role as a political watchdog on behalf of Nigerians.”
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