Corruption: Investigate Buhari’s Cabinet Members - Matawalle Dares EFCC

Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle, has dared the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate President Muhammadu Buhari’s cabinet members over suspicion of corruption and abuse of office.

The All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain, who was reacting to a statement credited to EFCC chairman, Abdulrasheed Bawa, that the anti-graft agency had sent invitations to all outgoing governors and commissioners in a bid to commence an investigation, said the process must not be politicized.

He urged EFCC to also go after officials of the Presidency and members of the outgoing Federal Executive Council (FEC), stressing that such probe should not be limited to outgoing governors and commissioners but those working at the Presidential Villa as well.

Matawalle’s statement reads: “My attention has been drawn to a statement credited to the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Malam Abdulrasheed Bawa, in which he claimed he has sent invitations to all outgoing Governors and Commissioners in a bid to commence investigation into alleged corruption and abuse of office perpetrated by them while in office.”

The Zamfara State governor said while the said investigation is appropriate and commendable, considering it’s essential for political office holders to account for their actions in office and EFCC is imbued with the power of investigation, the power to do so must be exercised judiciously.

He added “The investigation must be wholistic and not selective. It is in this respect that the recent invitations and pronouncement by the EFCC Chair is imbalance, incomplete, hypocritical, and unnecessarily skewed.

“This is counterproductive to the anti-corruption crusade itself, that is if Malam Bawa is actually committed to one.

“In a bid to help the obvious knowledge gap and inertia exhibited by the EFCC Chair, the probe should be all-embracing and cover all officers.

“I demand that the EFCC chair extend similar invitations to officers of the Presidency and members of the Federal Executive Council, which is the highest tier of government in the country.

“As I and some eminent Nigerians have evidence of corrupt practices, breach of public trust and abuse of office against him and the commission led by him.

“He should explain, for instance, how he has assumed the role of the plaintiff, prosecutor, and jury and how he has executed his brand of plea bargaining with suspected criminals and saboteurs of the Nigerian economy and agenda who, instead of being put on trial, are walking freely all over Nigeria.

“It is when the EFCC Chair does this and becomes open, non-selective and all-embracing with his invitation that we will take him seriously.

“It is only then will serious-minded officers who have served the people selflessly and meritoriously and are not opposed to an examination of their books, and indeed Nigerians generally take him seriously.”

Matawalle argued that without this, it is just a case of another person in government who has some explaining to do himself over allegations of corruption, high-handedness, and abuse of office now asking others to account, by so doing, merely giving Nigerians a comic relief from the present challenging times they are experiencing.

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