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Chime still under investigation, says EFCC

Nigerian News Update » Nigerian Newspapers
Punch Newspaper
 
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has declared that a former governor of Enugu State, Sullivan Chime, is still being investigated over alleged acts of corruption perpetrated during his time in office.

Chime, who served as the governor of Enugu State from 2007 to 2015 on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, recently defected to the All Progressives Congress.

The former governor said his move to the APC had nothing to do with investigations by the anti-corruption agency into his role in the N23bn campaign funds involving a former Petroleum Resources minister, Mrs. Dieziani Alison-Madueke, and other cases of alleged corrupt enrichment linked to his time in office.

The EFCC had last year invited Chime to its Enugu South-East zonal office over the campaign fund saga.

However, addressing journalists in Enugu on Wednesday, the head of the EFCC operations in the South-East, Mr. Johnson Babalola, said Chime was still under investigation.

Chime’s former aide, Rita Mba, the secretary of the PDP campaign organisation in Enugu during the last election, who was also questioned by the anti-graft agency over the campaign funds, had alleged in a petition that the anti-corruption commission had been compromised in the case against Chime.

Mba’s grouse against Chime stemmed from reports that, when quizzed by the EFCC over the campaign funds, the former governor reportedly told detectives that he handed over the money to her (Mba).

Mba was also the state’s Commissioner for Special Duties and Inter-Government Affairs at the time.

Reacting to Mba’s claim that the commission had been compromised in the case against Chime, Babalola said, “Chime is still under investigation, criminal cases don’t have expiry date.

“The case is still not closed.

“Rita has the right to allege that we have compromised – we are operating democracy, freedom of speech, freedom of expression.

“But I want to tell you that she too is still under investigation and I don’t want to say more than that about the case.

“She is still under investigation and we are making progress.”

Babalola revealed that another former governor in the South-East, who was not named, was also under investigation for allegedly putting state fund into bond to the tune of over N4bn.

He went ahead to declare that the EFCC boss, Ibrahim Magu, was innocent of all the allegations levelled against him by the Department of State Services.

The allegations were cited by the Senate for its decision to refuse Magu’s confirmation.

“He (Magu) is innocent, he is a very clean man, the DSS is wrong.

“The main thing in Nigeria is corruption and insecurity, the powers that be are against my oga.

“He has no skeleton in his cupboard and they cannot stop him from carrying out investigation,” Babalola said.

He also expressed regrets over lack of funds in the EFCC, noting that the people that are supposed to approve funds for the commission are the same people that the agency is investigating.

Babalola said, “We are handicapped financially for the work because the people we are fighting are still the same people that will approve our funds.”
 
 
 
 
 
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