Hand Lawal, Oke Over to EFCC, SERAP Tells Buhari

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A human rights advocacy group, Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, says it welcomed the sacking of the suspended Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Babachir Lawal; and the Director General of the National Intelligence Agency, Mr. Ayodele Oke.

Lawal and Oke were sacked on Monday by President Muhammadu based on the report of a three-man panel headed by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, which investigated them for corruption.

In a statement on Monday by its Deputy Director, Timothy Adewale, SERAP said it welcomed the sacking of the two Federal Government officials, but said the President should go a step further by handing them over to either the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission or the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission for further investigation and possible prosecution.

It said taking this step would help to reassure many Nigerians that were becoming worried as to the direction that the Federal Government’s anti-graft war was heading.

SERAP said, “This government now has a real opportunity to reassure a lot of Nigerians who may be worried about the direction of travel of the President’s anti-corruption agenda that there will be no sacred cows as far as the fight against corruption is concerned.

“What the government needs at this time is a revolutionary approach to the fight against corruption if Buhari is to show his commitment to ‘kill’ corruption before corruption ‘kills’ Nigeria.

“Without effective prosecution of high-ranking public officials charged with corruption, this government’s fight against corruption may sadly turn out to be all motion and no movement, and this will eventually undermine the legitimacy of the anticorruption efforts.”

SERAP also urged Buhari to “move swiftly to publish report of investigation into the secret reinstatement of fugitive former civil servant, Abdulrasheed Maina, and without delay identify and bring to justice anyone suspected to be involved.”

The Punch

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