The Lawmakers’ Action Is To Intimidate EFCC –Oyati | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Cover Choice, POLITICS

The Lawmakers’ Action Is To Intimidate EFCC –Oyati

Posted: Aug 9, 2015 at 12:01 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) recently  invited the wife of the Senate President over some allegations of financial crimes and about 25 lawmakers were said to have accompanied her to the commission’s office to honour the invitation. How do view the legislators’ action?



There is nothing illegal in a colleague or friend accompanying a suspect who has been invited by the police or any security agency for any reason. But what is curious about Saraki’s wife’s case is the fact that that number of lawmakers had to accompany her, more so that she is not a lawmaker. It suggests a form of solidarity, with the intention to intimidate the EFCC; it is nothing else. There is nothing that is so serious that will make lawmakers who are worth their salt, who are supposed to be making laws for the Nigeria, to abandon their legislative business and go accompanying the wife of the Senate President to honour an invitation by the EFCC. All they needed to do was to have got a lawyer, one of the best in the country; if they are not satisfied with one, they get two or three or as many as 20, if they liked, to accompany her. But for them to have abandoned their legislative duties and accompanied the woman to the commission, to me, smacks of irresponsibility. It goes beyond the usual solidarity that one would expect. It also smacks of political immaturity in the sense that they did not consider how the public will view what they did; it gave a very wrong signal because the action tends to give a tacit approval to corruption. If the woman was invited, she should go there with a lawyer; there was no point trying to give the whole issue a political coloration by the lawmakers accompanying her in such a large number, thereby leaving their business as legislators to suffer. Even if it is a court case, if they are not required there as witnesses, they have no business going there; they should leave the business to a lawyer to handle.

With this attitude, don’t you think this crop of legislators may work to weaken President Muhammadu Buhari’s anti-corruption war?

Yes, those legislators’ action is not encouraging because it shows a kind of disapproval of what the President is doing in terms of his no-nonsense attitude to corruption. Their action makes it look like they are opposed to what the President is doing in the area of corruption. That is the statement. Yes, going to the EFCC with the woman is a very loud statement, telling the public that the government should not be encouraged to fight the wife of a big man, and if you invite our wives we will invite all lawmakers to follow us. It was an unnecessary solidarity which smacks of political immaturity. The lawmakers should realise that they hold a sensitive position in the country. The anti-corruption war should be the concern of everybody. The legislators should be seen to be encouraging the President to fight the war. That they went in that large number with the woman is a tacit disapproval of what the Buhari administration is doing.