SIEMENS SCAM: EFCC Summons Olanrewaju, Adebayo, Muhammed, Others


San Francisco, May 20, (THEWILL) - In its determined bid to thoroughly investigate the involvement of some prominent Nigerians in the 17.5million Euro Siemens bribery scam, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has summoned three former ministers who are alleged to have been indicted in the scandal for interrogation.

THEWILL can report that the former Communication Ministers are General Tajudeen Olarenwaju, Mr. Cornelius Adebayo and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Deputy National Chairman, Dr. Bello Muhammed.

Chairman of the EFCC, Mrs Farida Waziri disclosed this on Wednesday, May 19, 2010, when she fielded questions from journalists while receiving executive members of the Nigerians in Diaspora Organization Europe, NIDOE, who paid her a courtesy visit in her office. She said that the three former ministers were invited for interrogation to establish the roles they allegedly played in the scam. Waziri said that contrary to some media reports that EFCC newly re-opened the bribery scam, the Commission had been on top of the case.

She disclosed that the recent conviction of some people involved in the case by a German court in Munich, has thrown up a new vista in the case. “Actually, that case was never closed and has been on-going; however the conviction of some people in Munich, Germany has changed the scenario and will help us identify more people involved. We are waiting to get a certified true copy of the judgment,” she said.

The Siemens 17.5million euro scandal was uncovered in 2009 by the German police after invading the headquarters of the company in Germany over allegations of bribing some Nigerians, Libyans and Russians in its bid to get contracts. Waziri said that the EFCC will get to the root of the scandal and prosecute whoever is found to have soiled his hands in respect of the case. Waziri, while thanking the representatives of Nigerians in Diaspora for their visit, stressed that they are in very vantage positions to re-orientate the outside world about the activities of the EFCC and that not all Nigerians are fraudsters.

Waziri reiterated her call on all Nigerians to take actions against the menace of economic crimes and corruption, saying they are the direct victims of all the negative effects of the menace. She also urged Nigerians at home and in the Diaspora to join in the task of fighting corrupt practices and ignore the campaign of calumny against the EFCC and its principal officers.

In his response, the Chairman, Nigerians in Diaspora Organization, Europe, Alistair Soyode, who is also the founder and Chair of BenTV, United Kingdom, commended the EFCC for its multiple achievements in its anti-graft war. He also appreciated the immense efforts being made by Waziri to make the EFCC a modern and globally competitive anti-graft agency.

"We believe you are doing something, we believe we saw something positive you have done and we believe we can do something to contribute in this fight," he said. He also said that Nigerians abroad are proud of the consistence and doggedness of the EFCC in ridding the nation of corrupt practices.

He called on all those in leadership positions to eschew selfishness and embrace people- friendly policies, saying that youth empowerment was necessary in fighting corruption. Soyode also commended Waziri for initiating ANCOR and suggested the setting of EFCC offices in some European countries to enhance its operations. Other members of the group who accompanied Soyode include Dr. George Manuwuike, Vice Chairman based in Ukraine and Ms. Lola Visser- Mabogunje, based in Holland.