EFCC has reacted to a report by Sahara Reporters claiming that DSS officials on January 7th, stopped EFCC operatives from arresting the Chief of Staff to President Buhari, Abba Kyari, over allegations of corruption. In this statement shared on its social media platform, EFCC says it is not investigationg Kyari and also denied the reports of an attempted arrest. The statement is below…
The attention of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC has been drawn to ongoing campaign by agents of misinformation and destabilization as championed by reports published in Sahara Reporters, an online news report, entitled: Untold Security, Intelligence Conundrum Of The Buhari Administration, authored by a certain Sani Tukur. Ordinarily, we would have ignored the report and allow it to end up in the dustbin of history, for that is where it actually belongs, but for the fact that it is a follow–up to an earlier, similar, report also titled: EFCC’s Attempt To Arrest Abba Kyari Sparks Panic In Aso Rock, which we considered an attempt to silence the Commission from carrying on with its constitutional duties of fighting corruption; we have considered it necessary to clarify issues in relation thereof.
The first report stated that Aso Rock Villa, the seat of the Nigerian Presidency, was, on penultimate Sunday, thrown into a panic, following an alarm by Mr. Abba Kyari, Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari, that he was about to be arrested by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). The report further stated that “Mr Kyari, who has been named in a number of corruption cases, said sources, told, Presidency officials that his residence at Defence House in Abuja was ordered invaded by Mr. Ibrahim Magu, Acting EFCC Chairman.
“The Chief of Staff was said to have quickly notified the Director-General of the Department of State Security (DSS), Mr. Lawan Daura, of the impending arrest. Mr. Daura, who has been offering protection to high profile corrupt persons, using his office, immediately deployed a platoon of DSS officers to stop Magu from carrying out the arrest”.
For the purpose of clarification, the modus operandi of the EFCC does not accommodate the alleged invasion as the modus-operandi of the Commission has always been to scrutinize petitions upon receipt, look at the petition on the face value if it has merit and to carry out preliminary investigation to establish a prima-facie case. Once all these requirements are satisfied, the suspect(s) is (are) invited for questioning and interrogation and his (their) statement(s) taken under caution.
All these are prelude to arraignment in a competent court of jurisdiction and a suspect who is being invited for interrogation is formally sent an invitation letter to that effect.
The so-called invasion, is entirely alien to the established mode of operations of the EFCC, established over the last one and half decades in line with international best practices.
Firstly, the Commission will like to state that it is not investigating Mr. Kyari nor is it aware of any petition against him.
Secondly, EFCC does not “invade” the homes or offices of anyone the Commission wishes to interact with in furtherance of the discharge of its mandate. The Commission will properly notify and invite any person it wants, to assist it in the resolution of any matter under examination.
Thirdly, EFCC does not go to carry out invitations or arrests in the middle of the night. As a transparent organization, the Commission carries out all its operations in broad day light.
These and other standard operational procedures are what guide the activities of the Commission and which have earned it worldwide acclaim over the years.
The Commission was therefore taken aback when Sahara Reporters went public with the story of a purported “impending arrest”. EFCC does not do speculative investigations or arrests. Therefore the action of those behind the false reports could best be described as shouting wolf where none exits.
It must be underscored that EFCC makes it a point of duty and professional responsibility to act within the ambit of the law. The Commission cannot be intimidated and crying wolf by anyone cannot stop the Commission from carrying out its constitutional responsibility.