'No Interference' In EFCC, Says Lamorde

Source: thewillnigeria.com

BEVERLY HILLS, February 05, (THEWILL) - The chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Mr.

Ibrahim Lamorde, Wednesday dispelled all notions of interference in the work of the agency, asserting that the Commission works independently.

Lamorde stated this when he received the Director, Sub-Sahara Africa Department of the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr.

Michael Stibbe and the ambassador of the Netherlands to Nigeria, John Groffen in his office.

The commission if often accused of being used to witch-hunt perceived opponents of the Executive arm of government, especially during the reign of its controversial pioneer chairman, Mr.

Nuhu Ribadu.
However, Lamorde stated that the Commission does it work independently and without any interference citing the prosecution of those allegedly involved in the fuel subsidy scam as example.

'We have enjoyed tremendous political goodwill.
We charged the son of Bamanga Tukur, who until recently was the chairman of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP to court.

We also charged the son of Ahmadu Ali, former chairman of PDP to court and a host of others.

If you look at the fuel subsidy thing, it involves people of high net worth .

we try to do our best so that whatever we do, we are able to defend it,' he said.

Earlier, while welcoming the envoys to his office, the chairman thanked the Kingdom of the Netherlands for its support to the Commission in the fight against economic and financial crimes.

He solicited for more collaboration between the Netherlands and the Commission in the investigation of fuel subsidy cases as he stated that most of the cases have links to the Netherlands.

When asked by Stibbe about two key areas the Commission would want support from the Netherlands, Lamorde stated that strengthening the existing relationships between the Netherlands and the training of EFCC personnel were key.

'We need to strengthen existing cooperation in terms of law enforcement activities.

The other issue that is important for us is training,' he said.

Recalling some of the landmark achievements of the Commission, Lamorde told his guests that the Commission recovered and paid over $200 million to a Brazilian Bank, Banco Noreste, and $4.

48 million to Julianah Ching of Hong Kong, in restitution.

He assured the envoys that the Commission will continue to do its best to rid the society of economic and financial crimes.