Posted by News Express | 4 February 2016 | 3,021 times
Attorney General of the Federation & Minister for Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami, SAN, lied when he claimed that the Economic & Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had in the past 12 years since its creation, recovered over $2 trillion or N400 trillion from Nigeria’s criminal groups and public office holders.
The International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law (Intersociety) stated while reacting to the minister’s claim made on Tuesday in a keynote address presented at the First Annual Conference on Financial Fraud, Cyber-Crime & Other Cross-border Crimes, held in Abuja.
According to Intersociety in a statement issued yesterday in Onitsha, “Nigeria and its federating units including States, LGAs and Federal had never generated half of $2 trillion (N400 trillion)” since the return of civil rule in June 1999; not to talk of the EFCC recovering $2 trillion in the past 12 years since its creation.”
The rights group argued in the statement signed by the Board Chairman Emeka Umeagbalasi and Head, Democracy & Good Governance Programme, Chinwe Umeche, Esq: “Even if the total public expenditures of 2003 and 2004 are added to the total public expenditures of $600 billion or N118.2 trillion under reference; covering January 2005 to December 2016, the total public expenditures, including loans and generated funds; budgeted, allocated and expended since then is not more than $700 billion or N140 trillion.”
Intersociety threw the following questions to Malami and the Federal Government: Where did “the $2 trillion (N400 trillion)” the EFCC recovered in the past 12 years come from? Where is it kept? Was it recovered from “looted” personnel cost budgets or overheads cost budgets? Or was it recovered from meager $180 billion (+$30 billion allocated for capital expenditures for 2003 and 2004) meant for capital expenditures from January 2005 to December 2016? Was it also recovered from oil bunkering? What are Nigeria’s total public expenditures from its three tiers since 2003? How much was recovered from “criminal groups” as well as “from public office holders”?
“We challenge the AGF as well as the authorities of the EFCC to rubbish this position of ours by providing publicly concrete answers to the above questions and graphic details of how, where and when the EFCC recovered $2 trillion or N400 trillion from criminal groups and public office holders in the past 12 years, as well as statistical breakdown of the amount and how it was recovered, kept or spent,” Intersociety said.
•Photo shows Justice Minister, Abubakar Malami, SAN.
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