How ex-Gov Yahaya Bello declined invitation for interrogation —EFCC boss


EFCC Chairman,  Mr Ola Olukoyede, standing, at the news conference in Abuja.

By Mark Longyen

The Executive Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC,  Mr Ola Olukoyede has disclosed that he made personal efforts to invite a former governor of Kogi State, Mr. Yahaya Bello to respond to investigations regarding his alleged involvement in money laundering.

He said that Bello’s alleged financial fraud amounted to the sum of N80,246,470,089.88 (Eighty Billion, Two Hundred and Forty Six Million, Four Hundred and Seventy Thousand  and Eighty Nine Naira, Eighty Eight Kobo).

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Olukoyede stated this in Abuja while addressing media executives at the Corporate Headquarters of the EFCC.

According to him, he had a telephone conversation with Bello offering him ample opportunities to present himself for interrogation by investigators of the EFCC.

“On my honour,  I put a call to him to honour him as a former governor. He said, I can’t come, claiming that a certain lady had surrounded  the EFCC with over 100 Journalists to embarrass or intimidate him and all that stuff.

“I said if that is your fear, I will make you come directly to my floor.  I will invite my operatives to interrogate you in my own office.  What could be more honourable than that?

“Do you know what he said?

‘Can’t they come to my village?’

“My Director of Investigations also sent a message to him”,  he said.

The EFCC boss said he was worried at the report of larceny available to the EFCC concerning the former governor.

“A sitting governor, because he knew he was going,  he moved money directly  from the government’s account to a bureau de change  to pay his children’s school fees in advance, $720, 000 in anticipation that he was going to leave government house”,  he said.

Olukoyede also disclosed that the EFCC,  in its bid to ensure the safety and stability of the foreign exchange market, has uncovered a new fraudulent scheme called P to P, peer to peer trading scheme.

The platform, according to him,   is operating outside  the official banking and financial corridors ,with more than 300( three hundred) accounts linked to it  already frozen by the EFCC.

He reaffirmed the commitment of the Commission to the economic growth and development of the country,  promising that the EFCC would not relent in the exercise of its mandate.

Olukayode told the media executives that the Commission had recovered more than N120billion from fraudsters within the past six months and secured more than 1300 convictions.

He called on Nigerians to be more dedicated to the nation,  insisting that  patriotic Nigerians should offer more support to the EFCC because the Commission is crucial to the growth and development of Nigeria.

‘’If you support the EFCC, you are working for the growth of Nigeria.  We all have stakes in the wellbeing of our nation”,  he said.

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