A coalition of advocacy groups operating on aegis of Civil Society Alliance For Eradication of Corruption, has appealed to the President-elect, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu, not to listen to those calling for the sack of the chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr Abdulrasheed Bawa.
The group argued that any attempt to sack the EFCC chairman, Abdulrasheed Bawa, now would further portray Nigeria in bad light among the international community.
According to the group, it would showcase the country as not serious in building a strong institution needed to ensure that looted funds were recovered and plunged back to the economy.
Briefing newsmen in Abuja on Thursday, the spokesman, Mr Nelson Ossaieze, said the call for sack and removal of Bawa at this transition period is a wrong idea that would further defeat the already established fight against some political office holders most of whom would no longer enjoy immunity and thus makes investigation easily done.
Flanked by leaders of the coalition, Ossaieze stated that Bawa would no doubt assist in bringing to book those who allegedly looted the nation’s treasury and make to face justice and thereafter recover loots that the government would need to stabilize the economy.
He said: “As an anti-corruption coalition, we have noticed with pains, how inter agency rivalry and ‘cabals’ have severally stalled operation of the commission in the fight against corruption.
“This is seen in the way and manner they have severally influenced outcome of investigations and situations whereby the commission goes ahead, they come up with procured court injunctions to stall further investigations.
“This attitude has stalled several anti-corruption battles been investigated upon by the commission, and has often at time leads to collision of interest as the Bawa is left with no option to either respect court order or go ahead with the investigation so as to recover the looted loot.
“The call for sack and removal of Bawa at this transition period is a wrong idea that will further defeat the already established fight against some political office holders most of whom will no longer enjoy immunity and thus makes investigation easily done.
“Bawa should be allowed to complete the ongoing investigation of some of the political office holders, including that of the ruling party.
“We are sure these are part of those calling for his removal, which we stand against and advice the outgoing government to ensure that such calls are not listened to but instead make him more focus in delivering his mandate.
“The flimsy excuse under which they are calling for his removal, is selective disobedience to court rulings.
“We all know, the standard rule if such occurs, it’s for the complainant to approach court and charge him for contempt not call for outright removal.
“At times, we also know that under corrupt charges some court rules need to be further tested before obeyed as it can truncate an ongoing investigation.
“Under same Bawa, the commission has recorded 3,785 convictions and still counting, but to our surprise this was not celebrated by anyone but rather a frivolous call for his removal is what we are seeing.
“His removal now, will further portray us in bad light in the international community as not serious to build strong institution that we need to build to ensure that our looted funds are recovered and plunged back to the economy.
“We also, wish to advice the President elect not to listen to this nay sayers as Bawa will no doubt assist in bringing to book and make to face justice hidden corruption and recovery of loots that the government will need to stabilize with because we can’t be on a borrowing spleen again as a nation.
“The war against corruption especially under President Buhari has its milestones, prospects and no doubt challenges hence the need to upheld and sustain what is been done by EFCC under Bawa and ensure those accused are called up to clear their names.
“This we must sustain, and in doing that we hereby pass a vote of confidence on Bawa and urge him to carry on with delivery of his mandate and further deepen the anti-graft agency.”