The federal government has denied reports that it is investigating the chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Lamorde, following allegations of diversion of recovered funds from corrupt Nigerians by a whistle blower.
George Uboh, owner of Panic Alert Security Systems, a private security firm, had petitioned the Federal Ministry of Justice on September 18, 2015 accusing Lamorde of financial impropriety, including non-remittance of money recovered by the anti-graft agency from corrupt individuals to the tune of N1trillion.
In the letter, Uboh demanded the immediate prosecution of the EFCC boss, retrieval of the prosecutorial powers of the commission, which it derives from the justice ministry, among others.
Media reports surfaced on Monday that the Solicitor-General of the Federation and Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Justice, Abdullahi Yola, had ordered the EFCC to investigate its chairman.
However, the ministry swiftly denied the report, calling it erroneous and misleading.
A statement issued by the spokesperson of the ministry, Charles Nwodo, acknowledged that it received a petition from Uboh, but explained that Lamorde was only asked to respond to the allegations.
“The general public is invited to note that a petitioner had earlier forwarded allegations against the Chairman and other functionaries of the EFCC which, as required by the rules of the Public Service and the constitutional right to fair hearing, was passed to the Chairman of the EFCC for response,” the statement read, adding that the ministry is awaiting the response.
The statement noted that the media report relied on the letter written to Uboh acknowledging receipt of his petition “to weave around it only to misinform unsuspecting members of the public.”
Uboh had earlier written a similar petition to the Senate making the same allegations, leading to a public hearing and the invitation of the EFCC chairman to defend himself.