The Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, has described the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) as irresponsible, barbaric and undemocratic, against the background of it’s continued detention without trial of Warimopei Dudafa, a former Special Assistant on Domestic Affairs to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, and the invasion of the Abuja residence of a former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode.
In a statement by his special assistant on public communications and new media, Lere Olayinka, the governor said that it is the height of executive rascality for the EFCC to have held occupants of Fani-Kayode’s residence hostage for eight hours despite the fact that he was only invited to come to the EFCC office on Monday and there was no evidence that Fani-Kayode refused to honour the invitation.
“EFCC under President Muhammadu Buhari is acting as if it is above the law and Nigerians and the international community must remind the commission that we are in a democracy where rule of law is sacrosanct.”
Fayose said that the actions of the EFCC have shown clearly that it is an instrument of victimization against oppositions in the country, adding that the anti-graft agency should go and study how other anti-corruption agencies in other countries behave.
“The EFCC must be reminded of the judgement delivered in March, this year by Justice Yusuf Haliru of the Federal High Court in Nicholas Arinse Vs EFCC & Nigerian Army where the judge held that the EFCC did not behave as if we were in a civilised society and that the anti-graft commission was behaving as if we were in a military dictatorship, where they arrest and release person at will.
“In the case of the former Special Assistant on Domestic Affairs to ex-President Jonathan, no one is saying those suspected of corrupt practices should not be investigated and tried, but it is wrong for Warimopei Dudafa to have been kept in EFCC custody for over two weeks without trial.
“Also, it is a demonstration of barbarism for the same EFCC that invited Fani-Kayode to its office on Monday to have invaded his house yesterday, holding the occupants hostage for eight hours when there is no evidence that Fani-Kayode refused to honour EFCC invitation.
“Why the show of barbarism by the EFCC as if Nigeria is now back to 1984 when Buhari was a military dictator?”
The governor called on the international community to pay attention to the abuse of rights of Nigerians and threat to democracy under President Buhari, even as he said: “it is obvious that democracy in Nigeria is becoming unsafe in the hands of Buhari’s government.”
He said that Nigerians must begin to ask the EFCC what happened to the several petitions written against leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and financiers of President Buhari’s election, including former governors.
He said that it is worrisome that the EFCC and the Department of State Services (DSS) have become President Buhari’s instrument of political victimization. [myad]