• Tuesday, May 28, 2024
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BusinessDay

Call EFCC to order – Yahaya Bello’s media office tells Tinubu

N80.2bn fraud: Court declines Bello’s prayer to vacate arrest warrant

The media office of Yahaya Bello, the former governor of Kogi, has asked President Bola Tinubu to call the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to order, saying Nigeria is not a lawless society.

The media office said this in a statement on Wednesday amid a move by the anti-graft agency to arrest the former governor.

At 9:30 am on Wednesday, individuals identifying themselves as officers from the EFCC arrived at Bello’s residence in Wuse Zone 4 with the intent to arrest him.
According to the statement, this action contradicts a High Court injunction issued on 9 February 2024, which prevents the EFCC from arresting or prosecuting Bello until a fundamental rights enforcement action is resolved.

The EFCC received this order on 12 February 2024 and appealed it on 26 February 2024. The Court of Appeal has scheduled to consider the stay of execution on 22 April 2024. The High Court will also deliver a judgment in the main case at noon today in Lokoja as noted in the statement.

“The EFCC was duly served with that Order on 12th February 2024 and on 26th February 2024; the EFCC filed an Appeal (Appeal No.: CA/ABJ/CV/175/2024: Economic and Financial Crimes Commission v. Alhaji Yahaya Bello) against the said Order to the Court of Appeal Abuja division. The Appeal was accompanied by a Motion for Stay of Execution of the Order of the High Court which the Court of Appeal adjourned for hearing till the 22nd day of April 2024.

“Furthermore, Judgment in the substantive case between Alhaji Yahaya Bello and the EFCC is to be delivered at 12 Noon today in Lokoja,” the media office stated.

Despite these legal proceedings, the EFCC has encircled Bello’s home to arrest him, which is against the current orders.

The media office expresses concern over the EFCC’s actions, which seem to ignore a standing court order. It suggests that the EFCC’s leadership may be misusing its authority for political purposes, which could undermine the rule of law and potentially impact the nation’s economy.

The statement noted that the public views the EFCC’s actions as an attempt to discredit the former governor with unfounded allegations, including one from September 2015, before his term began. It mentions possible attempts to amend these allegations with even more dubious claims.

The media office remarked on the irony of a law enforcement agency disobeying court orders, stating that this undermines the anti-corruption efforts and calls for adherence to legal principles.

The statement concluded by urging Tinubu to intervene with the EFCC to maintain legal order.