Okwe Obi, Abuja
Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), has urged the Nigerian Army to hand over General Officer Commanding (GOC), 8 Division Sokoto, Maj. Gen Hakeem Otiki, to the Economic And Financial Crimes Commission (EFFCC) for a “thorough, independent and transparent investigation to be carried out on the reported theft of N400 million by escorts delegated by the GOC.”
In a statement signed by its National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, yesterday, it charged the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, to introduce stringent measures to tighten the ways cash transactions are done to prevent the scandal that has reportedly occurred in Sokoto which he said has brought “enormous opprobrium on the global image of the country.”
“It is certainly not enough to detain the said military General in a military facility and certainly it is insufficient to rely only on internal mechanisms to unravel the circumstances surrounding the reported disappearance of such a huge amount of cash.
“The most logical thing to do is to also invite the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and ICPC to provide forensic investigative skills to uncover the truth behind the extensively damaging scam and to enforce the relevant anti-economic crimes’ law where necessary even as the indicted persons must be afforded the opportunities for fair hearing in line with section 36(5) of the Constitution.”
HURIWA also maintained that “it will be the standard practice to bring all persons implicated in this scandal to justice going by the report that the so-called VIP, allegedly being escorted by the soldiers who happens to be the younger brother of the former GOC, may have actually connived with the soldiers to steal the N400 million as he is nowhere to be found.”