From Chijioke Agwu, Abakaliki.
Ebonyi State Government yesterday said it was ready to furnish the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) with relevant documents and files concerning the allegations of financial misconducts levelled against it by some of its former appointees.
Some ex appointees of the government operating under the aegis of Forum of Former Coordinators of 64 Development Centres in Ebonyi state otherwise known as G-64 had in a petition to the anti-graft agency accused Governor David Umahi and some of his close aides of reckless embezzlement of over 6.7 billion Naira belonging to the 13 local Government Areas of the state.
The petitioners through their counsel, Amos Ogbonnaya, alleged that Umahi and his aides embezzled the funds between 2015 to 2019 when they were working with the government.
The anti-graft agency in a reply letter to the group recently had invited them for a meeting in Abuja with some of its officials and some representatives of the state government to commence investigation into the matter.
But the state government in a Statement on Sunday described the EFCC’s invitations as a welcome development.
The statement which was signed by the Special Assistant(SA) to the Governor on Media and Publicity,Francis Nwaze, and made available to Daily Sun, urged the petitioners to prepare to furnish the anti -graft agency with relevant facts and documents to butress their allegations or prepare to face the heat.
“The purported former Coordinators led by Amos Ogbonnaya had written the EFCC alleging that the Ebonyi State Government misappropriated the statutory allocation of the 13 Local Government Areas of the State to the tune of more than 6 billion naira.
“From the foregoing, it is clear that when the purported former Coordinators were concocting the allegations, it never occurred to them that the EFCC would make demand of information and relevant documents as it was just aimed at tarnishing the good image of the State Government.
“Unfortunately, the EFCC has not just requested information and documents, it has also directed that the group presents a representative for interrogation.
“Suddenly, the mighty are now fallen that the accuser has suddenly turned to an accused even without the State Government coughing on the allegations.
“The Ebonyi State Government is however not averse to make itself available for Public scrutiny should the EFCC require its inputs to ensure exhaustive investigation of the spurious allegations at any point in time.
“I therfore call on the people of Ebonyi State to remain vigilant and watch how merchants of fake news and blackmail would one day be implicated and vilified in the temple of justice” Nwaze said.