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BusinessDay

EFCC reopens money laundering cases against former govs

Ali Bello vs EFCC: Court adjourns hearing to February 5 and 6 for continuation hearing

There are indications that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has reopened money laundering cases against former governors and some former ministers, with the amount involved running into over N853.8bn.

BusinessDay checks with the anti-graft agency revealed that many governors and public officeholders whose cases were dropped will soon be invited back for questioning.

Olanipekun Olukoyede, the EFCC chairman, had recently declared that the agency would revisit the cases of the affected public office holders.

BusinessDay gathered that many of the governors, including Kayode Fayemi and Ayo Fayose two former Ekiti State governors; Bello Matawalle, the immediate past governor of Zamfara State, now minister of State Defence; Sullivan Chime, former Enugu State governor; Abdullahi Adamu, a former governor of Nasarawa, and Rabiu Kwankwaso, former Kano state governor and 2023 presidential candidate of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), will have their cases reviewed.

 Others include Peter Odili, former governor of Rivers State, Theodore Orji, former Abia state governor, Danjuma Goje, former governor of Gombe, Aliyu Wamako of Sokoto, Timipre Sylva, a former Bayelsa State governor as well as Sule Lamido, a former governor of Jigawa State.

BusinessDay gathered from EFCC officials on Monday, that the “commission is carrying out a thorough audit of cases of all former public officeholders.

“We have not concluded on the number, even the EFCC chairman cannot give you a specific number of those whose cases will be revisited until we conclude the ongoing investigations

“We are auditing all the cases, at the end those who have no case to answer will be dropped and those with issues, we will dust up their case files”

The chairman had assured that the commission will revisit the cases of former public officeholders

Speaking in Abuja through Wilson Uwujaren, the EFCC’s acting director of public affairs, in response to a protest by the Zamfara Alternative Forum at the EFCC headquarters, Jabi, Abuja, the EFCC chairman had specifically singled out the case of Bello Mattawalle, former Zamfara State governor, now minister of State for defence, over alleged N70bn money laundering while he was governor.

Uwujaren said the EFCC chairman had since assumption of office been reviewing all high-profile cases he inherited.

He said: “I want to thank the Zamfara people for doing this peacefully, we like that kind of peaceful initiative by young Nigerians, I want to assure you that as far as the commission is concerned, and nobody is above the law.