The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has reacted to comments credited to the Senate President Bukola Saraki alleging that the planned probe on his activities as the Kwara State governor was political.
Recall that on Monday the anti-graft commission had announced its plans to probe the outgoing Senate president especially his earnings and expenditures while he held sway as the governor of Kwara State.
Mr Saraki, in a swift reaction through his Special Adviser, Yusuph Olaniyonu, had alleged that the commission was merely on a witch-hunt mission on behalf of his political opponents seeking to settle scores.
However, in a statement on Wednesday, the EFCC’s acting head of media and publicity, Tony Orilade, disclosed that the “moves were driven by overarching public interest and due process of the law.”
“Indeed, all the instances in which the EFCC have had cause to sleuth into his financial activities either as a former governor or President of the Senate were driven by overarching public interest and due process of the law,” the statement read in part.
The statement read: “The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC took note of the reactions of the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki to the commission’s inquiries regarding his earnings as Kwara State governor as well as on the quality of his financial stewardship in the Senate.
“While it is his prerogative to ventilate his views on the matter as he deems fit, the Commission takes strong exception at the desperate attempt to cast a slur on its investigative activities by portraying Saraki as a victim of persecution.
“Furthermore, the Agency finds the attempt by the Senate President to tie our inquest to his International Human Rights Commission, IHRC appointment and his approaching life out of power as misleading, knowing too well that the background to our current inquiries reaches several years back.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the EFCC is obligated by law to enthrone probity and accountability in the governance space and has supremely pursued this duty without ill-will or malice against anyone.
“It is in the interest of the public, and for Saraki’s personal good, that he is not only above board, but be seen at all times to be so.
“Indeed, all the instances in which the EFCC have had cause to sleuth into his financial activities either as a former governor or President of the Senate were driven by overarching public interest and due process of the law.
“Against the background of the posse of indicting petitions and other evidence available to the EFCC, even Saraki will agree with the Commission that putting him through a legitimate forensic inquiry is the legitimate route to establish his integrity as a public servant.
“The distinguished Senate President has no need to fret so long as he has no skeletons in his cupboard.
“The Commission has a sacred mandate to rid the country of corruption and corrupt elements and restates its unflinching resolve to achieve these, no matter whose ox is gored.”
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