Home News Larmode absent as Senate probes EFCC

Larmode absent as Senate probes EFCC


Abuja, Aug. 26, 2015 (NAN) The Senate on Wednesday, began probe into the allegation of diversion of over N1 trillion levelled against the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Lamorde.
Mr Ibrahim Lamorde was, however, absent at a public hearing organised by the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions in respect to the probe.
He wrote the committee of his absence and was represented at the public hearing by the Head, Legal Department of EFCC, Mr Chile Okoroma.
The petitioner, George Uboh, told the committee that EFCC diverted the offshore seizures from a former Governor of Bayelsa, Diepreye Alamieyeseigha
“In a Dec. 2011 letter EFCC sent to the Chairman, House Committee on Drugs, Narcotics and Financial Crimes, EFCC stated that the aggregate recoveries from 2004 to 2011 (8 financial years) was N1,326,754,554,482.80.
“EFCC did not mention where the N1.3 trillion recovered was remitted to. ‘’
“EFCC’s claim that it did not recover up to a trillion naira is complete false.
“In EFCC’s `Summary of EFCC Monetary Recoveries 2003-March, 2013’ (11 financial years), EFCC stated that the aggregate recoveries was N497, 385,427,485.63.
“EFCC did not mention where the N497.3 billion recovered was remitted to.’’
Uboh queried how recoveries of eight financial years be more than recoveries for 11 financial years by over N 800 billion.
He wondered why recoveries for the same years differed on different reports.
Making reference to a letter allegedly written by a former EFCC Chairman Faridat Waziri to then President Goodluck Jonathan, Uboh said that the commission recovered over N975 billion between 2004 and 2007.
He added that EFFC recovered 316,137,596 dollars (N48.9bn), 32,106,510 Euros (N7.3bn) and 1,252,974 Pounds (N4 billion) between the three he cited.
“Total recoveries to be remitted as confirmed by EFCC are: N1.995 trillion, N48.9 billion, N7.3 billion and N4 billion totalling N2.051 trillion.
“After recovering over 2 trillion, how did the funds melt away?
“Two access bank recovery account statements tendered herein show opening balances of -0- as at 1 July, 2004, but no transaction occurred until June/July 2008.
“These transactions are expunged. Where are the funds deposited between July 2004 and June/July, 2008?
“EFCC diverted and concealed N779 million of recoveries from Tafa Balogun in its record.”
The petitioner urged the committee to compel EFCC to remit N2.051 trillion to the Federal Government of Nigeria.
He further urged that Access Bank be compelled to bring complete and unadulterated statements of EFCC accounts from 2004 till date.
The petitioner added that Aminu Ibrahim and others, who audited EFFC’s account be made to come before the committee and shed more light on discrepancies relating to EFFC recoveries in question.
Though Lamorde wrote to the committee indicating his absence from the hearing, the Head, Legal Department of EFCC, Mr Chile Okoroma, made an appearance.
The committee, however, asked Okoroma to leave since the EFCC boss had indicated in a letter that he would be absent.
Sen. Sam Anyanwu, the Chairman of the committee, told Okoroma that the committee would communicate to the commission as soon as a new date was fixed for it to appear before it.
Meanwhile, some Senators under the aegis of “Unity Forum” have described the probe of the EFCC Chairman as illegal as it did not follow due process.
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In a statement jointly signed by Sen. Ahmed Lawan, Barnabas Gemade, Abu Ibrahim and George Akume, the group insisted that the petition must first be presented at plenary before being referred.
“We stand against this probe, it is illegal and unconstitutional because it did not follow our rules,’’ the group said. (NAN)

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