Probes, Counter Probes: The Battle For The Soul Of Nigeria

By Uche Mbah

The sudden flurry of activities by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has thrown up questions on the aim of such resurgence of probes, giving the fact that their activities has been at low ebb in recent times.

Within two weeks, the EFCC has kick-started high profile cases like, for example, the probing of Maurice Iwu, former INEC Chairman, who has recently been taken to court by the commission, and granted bail with N1 billion bond, and two sureties in like sum, one being a senior civil servant. It will be difficult to get a senior civil servant who will agree he has a personal money up to one billion Naira, because the same EFCC may go after such a person to find out the source of the money.

Critics, however, insist that Iwu.s current travail was simply because he was implicated in the server issue of the Independent electoral commission, INEC. Legal tussle over INEC ownership of an Internet server has been part of the Presidential election Tribunal submissions by the opposition party. Allegations that Iwu was using his position as former INEC boss who still commands loyalty from the staff to help the case of the Peoples democratic party was rife, though this has not been independently confirmed by this magazine.

Critics also equates the current move by the EFCC to probe the power spending under the tenure of former President Obasanjo and the powerful cabal of retired Generals like Ibrahim Babangida and Theophilus Danjuma may also stem from the same motive. Coincidentally, no sooner than the announcement of such a probe was done than the report of the investigations into the activities of Muhammadu Buhari as head of the Petroleum Trust Fund,  PTF, was leaked online, where it was alleged that so much billions were not accounted for.

After the closing of the cases by parties at the election tribunal, it appears that the Presidential Candidate of the PDP has been making a lot of public pronouncements, which the Presidency has frowned upon. His congratulatory messages to the newly elected Prime Minister of Britain, Boris Johnson, elicited criticisms from the Presidency, who warned him that there is still a sitting president, that he is usurping the role of the president. They had accused him of being behind the Revolution Now crisis, an allegation the PDP denied.

Analysts believe that international pressures on the security situation in the country may have effected the presidency. For example, it was said that Iran and other countries were instrumental to the El Zakzaky release to go for medical treatment abroad. Obasanjo and Atiku are said to have influence in the international arena. Recently, Atiku’s inlaw was arrested for a second time, with his Lawyer, who double as his business managers. They may be charged after the Sallah Festival.

If all these speculations are right, then it remains to be seen where the roforofo fight will end.

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