Former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode, has reacted to the recent arrest of the Chief Executive Officer of Innoson Automobile Group, Innocent Chukwuma.
On Tuesday, Dec. 19, the company had alleged that it’s CEO, was arrested by the anti-graft agency at about 11:30 am in Enugu, without prior invitation.
His staff allegedly put up resistance against his arrest but the EFCC operatives eventually had its way and whisked him away to their Enugu office.
Reacting to Innocent Chukwuma’s arrest, Fani-Kayode said he was not surprised by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC’s action.
According to FFK, the business mogul is from the wrong part of the country and is being punished for providing employment for Nigerians. Read what he wrote in a tweet:
”Why should anybody be surprised about the arrest of the owner of Innosson Motors? They did the same to Cletus Ibeto about a year ago.
”These people come from the “wrong” part of the country and they are providing a service and employment for Nigerians. They must be punished for it.
”I have known the MD of GTB, Segun Agbaje and his two older brothers, Femi and Jimi, for close to 40 years. I urge him not to expose himself to the shark-infested waters of politics by allowing himself to be used by these barbarians to destroy Innoson. If he does he will regret it.”
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Other key opposition figures such as Reno Omokri and Senator Ben Bruce have also reacted to the news of the industrialist’s arrest. The duo took to Twitter to blast the APC led administration accusing the government of nepotism.
Reno Omokri faulted the EFCC for arresting the Innoson chairman when it hasn’t arrested the likes of Maina and Babachir. He wrote:
“How can the same EFCC that has not arrested Babachir, a proven thief, or Maina who was given security, now go and arrest Innocent Chukwuma, the founder of @innosonmotors, the only Nigerian manufacturing made in Nigeria cars? Is it a sin to be a 5 percenter in Buhari’s Nigeria?”
Similarly, Senator Ben Bruce called for the government to promote rather than demoralize industrialists such as the Innoson boss. He wrote:
“I find the arrest of Innocent Chukwuma truly troubling and demoralizing for Nigeria’s business environment. @innosonmotors is the only Nigerian car manufacturer. The job of government should be to do everything in its power, within the law, to promote them and build their morale.”
In the meantime, Innocent Chukwuma has flayed his arrest by EFCC operatives, alleging intimidation by some banks.
Speaking while in custody of the EFCC in Enugu, Tuesday, Dec. 19th, Chukwuma said that the Bank owed him an undisclosed sum of money which a court decided the matter in his favor, the Vanguard reports.
“But instead of the Bank to pay me my money, they are using EFCC to intimidate me,” Chukwuma said.
He, however, promised to give details of the transaction and his encounter with the EFCC, once he was through with the agency.
Confirming the arrest, EFCC’s Media Officer in Enugu, Mr. Chris Oluka, said there was resistance by the business mogul before his arrest.
“He did put up some resistance by using some trucks to block our way to his residence but we finally arrested him,” said Oluka.
Moreover, EFCC spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, has released a statement alleging that the Innoson boss had earlier jumped an administrative bail, according to Premium Times. Read the full statement below.
“A well-known industrialist Chief Innocent Chukwuma popularly known by his company’s name, INNOSON, has been arrested by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
“He was picked up at about 11 am at his Savage Crescent, GRA Enugu residence today, Tuesday, December 19, 2017.
“His arrest followed his refusal to honor invitation by the Commission having earlier jumped an administrative bail granted him in a case being investigated by the Capital Market and Insurance Fraud Unit of the Commission’s Lagos office.
“Chukwuma rather than honoring invitation by the EFCC mobilized six truckloads of thugs pretending to be the staff of his company to his residence, where they manhandled EFCC operatives.
“It took reinforcement from the Enugu office of the EFCC to effect the arrest of the industrialist who is currently being grilled by a team of investigators.”