Follow AGF’s advice, submit to EFCC, Tinubu support group tells Bello

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The Tinubu Media Support Group (TMSG) has asked former Governor Yahaya Bello to heed the advice of the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Lateef Fagbemi and submit himself to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the courts of law to clear himself of allegations of financial malfeasance while in office.

This, according to the group, is because the commission has not, in any way, erred but doing its lawful job by asking the former Kogi State’s Governor to appear before it for questioning.

The group explained that EFCC is mandated by law to scrutinise and enforce accountability of persons in government positions, which is also in line with the anti-corruption policy of the President Bola Tinubu administration

In a statement jointly signed by its Chairman, Emeka Nwankpa and Secretary, Dapo Okubanjo, TMSG described the stand-off between the former Governor and the EFCC as unnecessary, saying it is an affront on the sanctity of the law and the integrity of the President’s war against corruption.

“We have carefully watched all the drama and subterfuge that continue to trail the invitation by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to Governor Yahaya Bello, a senior member of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the curious attempts to politicize the routine matter of the request by the graft fighting agency to ask former Governor Bello to meet with its investigators.

“For us, the intervention of the Attorney General of the Federation, Lateef Fagbemi, asking the former Kogi governor to subject himself to EFCC’s scrutiny is a clear signal in this regard, not only on the position of law, but also on the stance of the President Bola Tinubu administration on anti- corruption.

“It should be clear by now to all Nigerians that strict accountability in governance occupies a cardinal place in President Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda. To serve this purpose, his government has shown zero tolerance to cases of corruption since assuming office.

“So the EFCC, by inviting the former governor Yahaya Bello, like it did with past and previous officials of the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and the immediate past Aviation minister, Hadi Sirika, is in tandem with its policy and character to nurture a culture of probity and accountability in governance.

“As a staunch member of our Party, we believe that Yahaya Bello has no reason to fear. It is a process that is not predetermined. We urge him to heed the advice of the Attorney General and make himself available to EFCC’s investigators as required by extant laws.

“We also advise members of the ruling party who have been up in arms against the anti- graft agency to be circumspect in their reaction to the issue.

“We see their anti-EFCC stance as a wrong signal and wonder what their response would be if opposition elements decided to constitute obstruction to invitation by the anti graft agency to former public officials who are not APC members.

“For us, Yahaya Bello owes it a duty to the state and the people he governed, if not to himself, to give account in line with our laws, and global best practices; it should not be seen as a witch hunt.

“So rather than running from the law, this is a unique opportunity for Bello to face it with a view to preserving his integrity and honour which may qualify him for higher national responsibilities in the future.” The statement added.

TMSG also urged the EFCC not to be deterred in its efforts at enthroning sanity, probity, and accountability in governance at all levels in the country.