The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has dismissed a media report that the Presiding Justice of the Court of Appeal, Kano Division, Ita Mbaba, is being investigated.
While the anti-graft agency admitted, on Wednesday, that its operatives visited a property housing Mr Mbaba’s residence in Kano, it said the judge was not the target.
In a statement by its spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, the commission said the operatives’ visit was for a verification exercise concerning the property.
It said Mr Mbaba had no link to the ownership of the property, therefore, could not have been the subject of its investigations.
The property, according to EFCC, located on Sheik Yusuf Adam Game street, off Race Cross Road, Nasarawa Government Reservation Area, Kano.
The commission added that the property came under EFCC’s searchlight “owing to a subsisting matter involving the owner of the property”.
“We wish to restate that Hon. Justice Ita Mbaba is not under any investigation by the EFCC. The commission holds the Judiciary in optimum respect and will do nothing to embarrass any officer of the court,” the statement added.
The commission’s disclaimer was in reaction to a media report that alleged some agents of the EFCC had invaded the home of the Kano State Appeal judge.
There have been previous raids on judges’ homes by law enforcement agents, although the EFCC has never been involved until the latest one.
It started when operatives of the State Security Service (SSS) invaded the houses of some judges, including two Justices of the Supreme Court, in Abuja and other parts of the country in 2016.
Not long after that, security agencies including EFCC began putting judges on trial over corruption allegations.
In a fashion similar to SSS’ invasion of some judges’ homes in 2016, some security operatives laid a siege to the home of a Justice of the Supreme Court, Mary Odili, the wife of a former Governor of Rivers State, Peter Odili, at Imo Street, Maitama, Abuja, on 29 October 2021.
The raid on her official residence was led by Lawrence Adjodo, who claimed to be a police officer with a search warrant to be executed on the house.
A magistrate in Abuja who issued the warrant would later withraw it. He said he was misled to issue it.
Along with other security agencies and the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, EFCC had denied knowledge of the raid.
EFCC insisted its operatives did not participate in the raid.
Read full Statement below
The attention of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has been drawn to some reports in the Social Media, alleging that its operatives, in the Kano Zonal Command, “invaded” the residence of the Presiding Justice of the Court of Appeal, Kano Division, Honourable Justice Ita Mbaba, located on Sheik Yusuf Adam Game street, off Race Cross Road, Nassarawa Government Reservation Area, Kano.
While it is true that operatives of the Commission visited the property housing Hon. Justice Mbaba, on a Property Verification Exercise, owing to a subsisting matter involving the owner of the property, there is no truth, linkage or nexus with any investigation of the Honourable Justice of the Court of Appeal.
Available facts showed that Hon. Justice Mbaba is not the owner of the property and could, therefore, not be the subject of any investigation by the Commission.
We wish to restate that Hon. Justice Ita Mbaba is not under any investigation by the EFCC. The Commission holds the Judiciary in optimum respect and will do nothing to embarrass any officer of the court.
Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility
Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.
For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.
By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
TEXT AD: Call Willie - +2348098788999