Why We Did Not Arrest Tinubu, EFCC Chairman Bawa Opens Up

Why We Did Not Arrest Tinubu, EFCC Chairman Bawa Opens Up

  • EFCC chairman, Abdulrasheed Bawa, said APC chieftain Tinubu cannot be arrested at the moment as the commission is still investigating him
  • Bawa implied that the EFCC will be accused of doing a media trial if it goes ahead to make an arrest while investigations are still ongoing
  • The EFCC boss also addressed a question regarding why a petition filed against the APC leader has not been acted on

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FCT, Abuja - Abdulrasheed Bawa, the chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), says the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Ahmed Tinubu, is under investigation.

Bawa made this known in an exclusive interview published by ThisDay on Sunday, June 20, adding that an investigation does not end in a day.

Tinubu under Probe, EFCC Chairman Bawa Says
EFCC chairman, Abdulrasheed Bawa, says APC national leader, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, is under investigation. Photo credits: BOLA Tinubu Ambassadors Southwest, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission
Source: Facebook

The EFCC boss reportedly requested for the asset declaration form of the former governor of Lagos when he was the head of Lagos Zonal office.

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Asked about the update regarding the request, Bawa said in the interview which has also been part-published by Daily Trust:

“You asked me a question earlier about arresting people before investigation and now you are saying why didn’t we arrest Tinubu? Why didn’t you just say ‘arrest him?’
“Investigation is ongoing. When you are investigating matters like this, they don’t end in a day. Thousands of investigations are going on, on a daily basis.
“You understand? You know you are from the media. After you will say we are doing media trial.”

Petition filed against Tinubu

Bawa was also asked why nothing was allegedly done about a petition submitted against Tinubu by a former managing director of Alpha Beta when Ibrahim Magu was the head of the EFCC and if he would take it up now that he is the commission's chairman.

His response:

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"Well, petitions are normally investigated based on their own merit. Every petition that EFCC receives, we have what is called petition vetting committees in all zonal offices. So, of course, the zonal head and the chairman have the discretion, based on what is their assessment of the petition.
"On these committees, we have lawyers, we have investigators that will sit down and review all petitions and advise. Some they reject, because they are civil in nature, you know, they communicate that to the petitioners or complainants and some they will advise for investigation and thorough look at the allegations contained and those will be assigned for the appropriate action.
"Any petition that comes, based on his own merit, it would be treated."

Asked why the petition has taken two years with "no action on it", Bawa said investigations can take up to 30 or 40 years to complete.

He added:

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"So, it’s not an issue that you are feeling that an investigation has taken two years, has taken four years, five years… after all, the lawyers will say that time does not run out on criminal investigation. Somebody can be investigated on an action that he did 30 years ago, 40 years ago."

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APC chieftain Orji Kalu to face prosecution again

Meanwhile, Bawa has vowed that the commission will prosecute a former Abia state governor, Orji Kalu, all over again.

Kalu, who is now a serving senator, was set free by the Supreme Court on technicalities after being convicted of stealing billions of naira when he was Abia state governor between 1999-2007.

Without addressing the substance of the case, the Supreme Court ruled that the trial judge that found him guilty had been elevated to the appeal court and should not have ruled on the matter. However, Bawa stated that EFCC is determined to continue prosecuting cases no matter how long it takes.

Source: Legit.ng

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