Buhari’s adviser denies criticising EFCC, ICPC

EFCC operative
EFCC operative

The Special Presidential Investigation Panel on the Recovery of Public Property, SPIP, has said that a newspaper ‘twisted’ quotes by the Chairman of the panel, Okoi Obono-Obla.
 
The Leadership newspaper on Wednesday published a report which said Mr. Obono-Obla stated that the anti-corruption agencies, particularly the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, had been compromised.
 
Mr. Obono-Obla was also reported to have questioned why the name of Liyel Imoke, a former Governor of Cross River State, was not in a list of cases of past government officials to be prosecuted provided by the EFCC.
 
The panel however said the “reporter completely quoted him (Mr. Obono-Obla) out of context and twisted the facts as they were.”
 
In a statement signed by its Head of Media and Communication, Sebastine Eko, the panel noted that the chairman would not cast aspersions on sister anti-corruption agencies such as EFCC and ICPC which are together leading in the fight against corruption of the APC-led government.
 
“The Special Presidential Investigation Panel for the Recovery of Public Property is established to assist government in the recovery of public property illegally acquired from proceeds of corruption amongst others. This it can only achieve by collaboration with other sister anti-corruption agencies, the media, CSOs and the general public.
 
‘‘To set the records straight, the Chairman, SPIP, Chief Okoi Obono-Obla did not hold a strategy meeting with the Say No Campaign, a civil society organisation as reported by the Leadership Newspaper. Rather, the conveners of the Say No Campaign lead by Mr. Ezenwa Nwagwu and Jaiye Gaskiya paid him a courtesy visit.
 
“The conveners of the Say No campaign stated categorically that the visit of the group was to ‘seek partnership with the Prosecution’s Office’ because of their (the group’s) passion to fight corruption.
 
“They also pointed out that ‘the group has been worried about prosecutions in Nigeria especially that of anti-corruption agencies’ because sometimes there were compromising issues that were involved.’ 
 
“This statement was made by the convener of the Say No Campaign, Mr. Ezenwa Nwagwu, and not Okoi Obono-Obla as the Leadership Newspaper wrongly reported.”
 
The panel requested a retraction of the report viewing it as a deliberate attempt to impede the war against corruption of President Muhammadu Buhari.


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