As investigation over the looting of $2.2 billion meant for acquisition of arms deepens, more people seem to be getting caught up in the web. Report has it that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, are currently confused on how to get information about the missing fund from the former governor of the Central Bank, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi who is now the Emir of Kano.
Sanusi, who was removed from the bank by former President Goodluck Jonathan for accusing the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, of not remitting $20 billion of oil proceeds into the national treasury, later become the Emir of Kano on the 8th of June, 2014. This influential religious position which the ex-governor currently occupies, now stands against the operatives of the EFCC from achieving a quick success in the prosecution.
The operatives are eager to interrogate the emir on the numerous disbursement of funds to the office of the former National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd), who is being tried for money laundering, breach of public trust and diversion of public funds. The operatives are however in a fix on what to do in order to get the revered traditional and religious ruler to speak to them on what he knows about the huge sums of money taken away from the nation’s apex bank under the guise of security.
According to Vanguard, the commission is contemplating inviting Sanusi or going to meet him quietly to interview him on the funds moved from the bank to the National Security Adviser during his tenure and why such disbursement was never questioned or declined by him. The commission is committed to have a first hand information from the emir but in a way that would not raise any eyebrow or bring the commission into trouble with any individual or group.
Information reaching us also said that the commission’s top officials had already visited Kano and would possibly try to seek an avenue to discuss with the emir quietly and return to Abuja. The commission is also ready to invite other CBN governors, including the incumbent governor, Godwin Emefiele, for questioning about their role in the looted money if need be.
Meanwhile, the Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE) has pledged it support to Federal Government in their the efforts to recover stolen public funds. Urging the government to respect the fundamental human rights of the suspects in the process, NGE asked the government to investigate every corruption case thoroughly and pursue same diligently and to a logical conclusion.
Addressing the government in the communiqué signed by its President, Garba Deen Mohammad and General Secretary Victoria Ibanga, the guild further warned state governments not to renounce their commitment in the payment of the N18,000 minimum wage. The guild also urged that the state’s internally generated revenue should be improved, cost of governance reduced and that they should ensure due process in the award of contracts.
Speaking further on the impact of the downward slide of the nation’s currency, the Guild, in the Communique said:
”the Guild is alarmed by the downward slide of the Naira which is impacting negatively on the purchasing power of Nigerians and wants the Federal Government to diversify the country’s revenue base to shore up the value of the national currency.
“The Guild also noted with concern the perennial fuel scarcity in the country and called on the Federal Government to find a lasting solution to the problem.”
Other issues addressed by the Guild include issue of freedom of expression which they warned that no attempt should be made by the senate to restrain the freedom of the press or the freedom of expression of Nigerians. They added that the Senate should retrace its steps with respect to the Frivolous Petitions Bill which is against the freedom of the press.