The Presidential Media Team said the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is “slowly but steadily changing the narrative of criminal prosecution in the country’’.
In an excerpt from its forthcoming book, the team stated that the nation’s leading anti-graft agency was setting a new standard for law enforcement with its unprecedented achievements in the last two years.
The book is entitled, “Making Steady, Sustainable Progress for Nigeria’s Peace and Prosperity: A Mid-Term Scorecard on the President Muhammadu Buhari Administration’’.
Set for public presentation in Abuja on Nov. 16, the publication is a compendium of notable achievements of the Buhari-led All Progressives Party (APC) administration since inauguration on May 29, 2015.
“The EFCC has, in two years, shown what courage and dedicated leadership can bring to the table in our nation’s quest to be free from the vice grips of corruption.
“Because, when all is said and done, without the commitment and unflinching support of President Muhammadu Buhari, this would have been a different story altogether,’’ the team said.
For instance, it noted that about 200 convictions were secured by the agency in 2016, with assets running into billions of Naira recovered.
According to the president’s media handlers, the EFCC has recorded 62 convictions in the first quarter of 2017 alone, raising public confidence that the momentum would be sustained.
“Perhaps, more significant is that among the convicts are a number of high-profile personalities, including a former governor, oil barons and top officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
“Bala Ngilari, former Governor of Adamawa State was jailed five years on March 6, by Justice Nathan Musa of the Adamawa State High Court for procurement fraud.
“The conviction was significant not only on the score that the trial was completed in seven months, but it was the first conviction of a former governor to be recorded in nearly six years,’’ the team said.
By August, the number of convictions and asset recovery in 2017 had risen to 137 and N409 billion respectively, according to the acting Chairman of the commission, Mr Ibrahim Magu.
Magu told a United Nations anti-corruption conference in Vienna, Austria, that the agency recovered stolen assets worth N738.9 billion between May, 2015 and Oct. 20, 2017.
The media team noted that the commission’s most “phenomenal achievement’’ was in the area of recovery of stolen assets, including the celebrated case of the 43 million dollars, 27,800 pounds and N23 million stashed in a private residence on Osborne Towers in Ikoyi, Lagos.
It also cited the 9.8 million dollars and 74,000 pounds discovered in a building belonging to former Group Managing Director of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, Mr Andrew Yakubu, in Kaduna in February.
“Equally, another whopping sum of N448.5 million was recovered from a shop at LEGICO Plaza, Victoria Island, Lagos. still in Lagos; N250 million was uncovered in Balogun Market.
The book will be reviewed by Prince Tony Momoh while APC National Leader Bola Tinubu is the keynote speaker/Presenter.