Yahaya Bello ‘runs to Tinubu, seeks intervention over EFCC’s persecution’

The media office of the former Governor of Kogi State, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, has again raised the alarm over what it described as an ongoing campaign of persecution orchestrated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) against the former governor.

To this end, it called on President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to intervene and hold the EFCC accountable for its actions, alleging that the anti-graft action against him was politically motivated.

The media in a statement issued in Abuja on Wednesday, which was dripping with venom, highlighted the perceived failure of previous attempts by the EFCC to tarnish the reputation of Bello through questionable allegations.

The media office also alleged that the EFCC, in collusion with certain political interests, has filed a new set of charges against Bello, this time accusing him of misappropriating a staggering sum of over N80 billion in February 2016, shortly after assuming office.

The statement questioned the feasibility of such allegations, considering the limited time frame in which the purported financial mismanagement is said to have occurred.

It also accused the EFCC of flouting legal procedures and disregarding court orders in its pursuit of the former governor.

The statement further criticised the composition of the EFCC’s legal team, pointing to perceived conflicts of interest and political bias among its members.

“The attention of the Media Office of His Excellency, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, has again been drawn to another chapter in the series of the ongoing persecution of the former Governor by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.

“Having failed woefully to achieve their motive of national embarrassment with the critical questions that greeted their earlier allegations that the former Governor converted over N80bn Kogi State funds to personal use in September 2015, even before he became Governor, masterminds of this unending persecution have hurriedly repackaged their script, this time dragging the name of the EFCC further in the mud.

“In a miscalculated bid to satisfy their paymasters at all costs, some desperate politicians have pushed the EFCC to approach another Federal High Court in Abuja, with the same set of questionable allegations without waiting for the determination of the two preceding cases they’ve filed in two different Courts simultaneously.  

“In this particular one, they tried to correct their initial blunder by saying that about N80 billion was now stolen in February 2016, arguably less than three weeks after he assumed office for the first time as Governor of Kogi State on January 27, 2016! 

“We want to draw the attention of the President to the fact that the abuse of Court processes and prosecutorial powers by the EFCC is assuming a dangerous dimension that the Head of the Commission might not even have paid attention to.

“We still want to assume that he is being misled into political persecution rather than diligent prosecution by bad eggs within the system, working with criminals masquerading as politicians. We therefore call again on the President to call EFCC to order in the interest of the rule of law,’’ the statement said.