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Following planned probe of the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ibrahim Lamorde, over alleged diversion of stolen funds recovered from looters, the senates in the 8th senate are rumbling resulting to a fresh crisis.
Member of the Peoples Democratic Party in the Upper Federal Legislative Chamber kicked against the probe.
The EFCC boss, according to a petition before the Senate, has been accused of diverting N1tn said to have been recovered from a former Governor of Bayelsa State, Diepreye Alamieyeseigha; and a former Inspector-General of Police, Tafa Balogun.
According to the petitioner, Dr. George Uboh, who is the Chief Executive Officer of Panic Alert Security Systems, through the senator representing his Delta North constituency, Peter Nwaoboshi, alleging that Lamorde, in connivance with other EFCC officials, short-changed the Federal Government in the remittance of funds and properties recovered from Alamieyeseigha and Balogun.
Controversy ensued After an earlier argument over the propriety of the investigation by the Senate, the PDP senators later in a statement signed by the Senate Minority Leader, Godswill Akpabio; his deputy, Emmanuel Bwacha; Minority Whip, Philip Aduda; and his deputy, Biodun Olujimi, rejected the planned probe.
The PDP senators' statement, issued late on Monday, partly read, “It has come to the notice of the PDP leadership in the Senate that the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions would begin a public hearing on Wednesday, August 26, 2015 and the committee has invited the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to appear before it.
“The PDP leadership in the Senate is not against any committee of the Senate performing its oversight duties and or functions but we feel that this is not the appropriate time to embark on the most important assignment, particularly since the same action was mooted and had failed at previous plenary session.
“We therefore urge the committee to suspend its public hearing on this particular matter until further notice.
“The PDP senate leadership reassures the Nigerian public of its support for the war against corruption by the Federal Government of Nigeria but hastens to add that such fight against corruption should be total and not selective.
“Nigerians need peace at this period of economic challenges precipitated by the falling of oil prices and actions that will overheat the polity and generate unnecessary friction between the executive and the legislature should be avoided.”
Some members of the committee to probe the EFCC boss were said to have disagreed sharply over the investigation, though the anti-graft commission released a statement to say that the commission under Lamorde feared no probe.
The commission, in a statement by its spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, described Uboh's petition as mischievous and intended to smear Lamorde.
The statement read in part, “The EFCC as an agency that is founded on transparency is not afraid of any 'probe' or request for information regarding its activities by individuals, groups or organs of government; so far as such requests followed due process of law.