The Minister of State for Niger Delta, Festus Keyamo (SAN), has commended the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for recording the highest number of convictions among law enforcement agencies in the country.
Keyamo, who was addressing the EFCC Cadet Course 8 undergoing orientation and induction at the EFCC Academy, Abuja, charged the 164 officers to take the fight against corruption seriously, bearing in mind the admonition of President Muhammadu Buhari that “if we don’t kill corruption, corruption will kill Nigeria.” He added, “Anybody who said corruption is not the bane of Nigeria today is not honest. A research conducted sometimes ago revealed that the amount of money looted as a result of corruption in Nigeria stands at $400 billion.”
Meanwhile, the Ilorin zone of EFCC has arrested five persons over alleged internet fraud and related offences. The suspects – Stephen Odanye, Abolarin Kayode, Babatunde Muhammad, Adepoju Tomiwa and Akinbamidele Femi – were arrested in different locations within Ilorin metropolis following intelligence reports. They allegedly used their phones and computers to communicate with their victims, majorly foreigners, to defraud them. EFCC spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, said the suspects would soon be arraigned. Also, Justice Mojisola Dada of the Lagos State High Court sitting in Ikeja has jailed one Lawrence Maduagwu 10 years for $179,000 fraud.
The convict was arraigned by EFCC on February 28, 2018 on a two-count charge of stealing and obtaining $179,000 by false pretence. In a related development, the Independent Corrupt Practices And Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has blamed petty corruption for insecurity, political instability and underdevelopment in the country. According to the anti-graft agency, the trend creates a negative national image, causes loss of revenue and deters Foreign Direct Investment.
Criminal activity cripples the ability of government to provide basic social services to the public, it also noted. In a tweet yesterday on ‘Petty Corruption in Nigeria’, the commission said it swooped on 37 Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) officials extorting motorists on various highways in many states, in collaboration with Department of State Services (DSS).
It claimed to have secured 35 months imprisonment for an official on a forgery case it prosecuted in Ibadan, Oyo State, in July 2019, while also prosecuting many government officials on job scam. The agency in its twitter handle, @ICPC_PE, asserted, “Petty corruption affects the economy and development of a country. It retards productivity and output. If citizens cannot access basic and important services easily, then their standard of living will be very low.”