The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) may have started underground investigation of some high profile individuals including former President Jonathan Goodluck and the incumbent Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen.
Punch, in a report, said a list it obtained contained the names of Patience Jonathan, the wife of former President Goodluck Jonathan, Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen; Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State; his predecessor and the current Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi; and the immediate past Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.
The names are in the list of high-profile cases involving over 100 politically-exposed persons and top-ranking public officers still being investigated by the EFCC as of August 2017.
The list was recently sent by the EFCC to the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN).
Among other notable names on the list are the incumbent Governor of Kogi State, Yahaya Bello, and his predecessor, Captain Idris Wada.
Other former governors on the list include Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State, who is now the Senate Minority Leader; Jonah Jang of Plateau State, the Senator representing Plateau North Senatorial District; Senator Ali Modu Sherriff of Borno State, the sacked National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party; and Chief Lucky Igbinedion of Edo State.
There are also some ministers who served in the Jonathan administration, including the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke; AGF and Minister of Justice, Mohammed Adoke (SAN); a Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Bala Mohammed; Minister of Aviation, Stella Oduah, who is now the Senator representing Anambra North Senatorial District; and a former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godsday Orubebe.
Alison-Madueke’s husband’s name, Real Admiral Alison Madueke (retd), former presidential spokesmen, Dr. Reuben Abati and Dr. Doyin Okupe are also on the list.
Other prominent high-profile persons on the list are a former Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Abdullahi Dikko; a former acting Chairman of the PDP, Uche Secondus; Colonel Bello Fadile (rtd), who served under the immediate past National Security Adviser, retired Colonel Sambo Dasuki; the incoming Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Abdu Kafarati; and Justice Mohammed Tsamiya, who was recently retired compulsorily by the National Judicial Council.
Recall that Malami last week has announced plans to create a central body that will coordinate all criminal prosecutions in the country.
Malami revealed the policy reforms that will give his office more powers over EFCC.
The new body, to be inaugurated in October, will comprise a Coordinating Centre for all federal government criminal justice agencies as well as an investigation unit.
The minister said the coordinating centre has become “eminently necessary” because of lack of effective cooperation and collaboration among the criminal justice and security agencies in Nigeria.
He explained that the centre will “Promote and enhance quick and easy coordination of all federal criminal cases within the Federal Republic of Nigeria;
“Enable the Office of the HAGF to checkmate abuse and or proliferation of criminal cases in Nigeria;
“Facilitate centralization and easy access to information for a robust and effective criminal justice system in Nigeria;
“Address such anomalies that leads to consistent rejection of vital/relevant evidence in the course of prosecution;
*Whittle down of the probative value of such evidence owing to inappropriate investigation.”
The unit, he said, shall coordinate and form part of every investigation in Nigeria for a robust investigation and successful prosecution of such cases.
The core function/mandate of the Investigation Unit shall consist of the following
“To advise every security agency carrying out investigation on the best lawful and admissible means of such investigation for effective prosecution thereafter;
“To actively form part of every sensitive and important investigation, as a synergy to successful investigation and prosecution of such cases;
“To ensure that every evidence obtained maintain the nature, value and form admissible in law court;
“To ensure that every investigation is comprehensibly and conclusively conducted;
Agencies that will come under the supervision of the coordinating centre include Department of State Services (DSS); Nigeria Police Force (NPF); the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC); the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Others are the National Agency for the Prevention of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP); the National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA); the Directorate Military Investigation (DMI); and the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) and the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB).