… Says anti-graft agency has secured 150 convictions
Oluseye Ojo, Ibadan
Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Ibrahim Magu, has dismissed the speculations that the anti-graft agency is being used to witch-hunt the perceived enemies of President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government.
Besides, he said the agency has secured a total of 150 convictions as at June 2018, which has proved that the agency has been working assiduously to nip corruption in the bud in the country.
He disclosed this at a stakeholders’ interactive session held at the premises of Ibadan zonal office of EFCC at Iyaganku, Ibadan, on Monday on how to strengthen its partnership and collaborative efforts in the fight against corruption.
The meeting was attended by the leadership of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) led by its chairman in Oyo State, Mr. Waheed Olojede; Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), led by its state chairman, Pastor Benjamin Akanmu; founder of Shafaudeen in Islam Worldwide, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke as well as National Orientation Agency (NOA) and Corrupt Practices Eradication Organisation of Nigeria (COPEON).
According to him, “The EFCC will not, and does not engage in witch-hunt. Our activities are in line with international best practices.
“In all that we do, we are indeed, guided first by the fear of God and patriotism to our fatherland and the rule of law.
“I will continue to discharge my duties solely by the fear of Almighty God, the overriding interest of our fatherland, Nigeria and the rule of law.”
Magu, who was received by the Zonal Head, Ibadan of EFCC, Mr. Abdul-Rasheed Bawa, noted that it “is pertinent for all of us to see ourselves as stakeholders in this fight.
“We must collectively strive to achieve the Nigeria of our dream, one which our children, indeed, even generations unborn will be proud of.
“For us at the EFCC, we are driven by courage, integrity and professionalism and our commitment to the common ask of improving the lot of our people at the grassroots as we promote working partnership with all of you, needs not be emphasised.
“Like we all know, corruption is the number one problem that has militated against the development of Nigeria, especially the very poor at the grassroots. The havoc that corrupt practices have wreaked on the Nigerian economy is, no doubt, endless.
“This is why fighting it to a standstill is not only a must, but the only lifesaver for our country, as to save the next generation. I want to restate for the records that, there is no better time to prop up the anti-corruption campaign than now.
“There are various ways of fighting corruption, which are to sensitise, create awareness, and all that. But I am telling you, the looting must stop.
“We should not glorify the corrupt. We should not appreciate the corrupt. The ill must stop in the interest of our future generation. We have to find a way to protect their future.”
Magu, who said the agency did not have any sacred cow in fighting corruption, stated further that the stakeholders’ interactive session was organised in recognition of important roles, which stakeholders have all played in assisting the commission to achieve its goal of ridding Nigeria of all forms of corruption.
“No doubt, your commitment and outcry against ills of corruption, particularly in the grassroots is a step in the right direction, since the people at the grassroots constitute major victims of the menace of corruption anywhere in the world.
“I am also very much aware that this responsibility and partnership towards complementing Federal Government’s efforts to rid corruption in Nigeria, is a social responsibility of all of us in line with the change mantra of the present administration.
“The media owe the people, particularly at the grassroots, the obligation of providing relevant information on the consequences and the negative impact of corruption in the society. We are always ever ready to provide the media with the necessary information to be disseminated to the grassroots on the evil of corruption.