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Alleged Fraud: EFCC hasn’t cleared any indicted officials in ongoing investigations at Humanitarian Affairs and Social Development Ministry –Official

Ola Olukoyede, Executive Chairman of EFCC

*The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission discloses the anti-graft agency has invited past and suspended officials of the Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development Ministry, and investigated alleged fraud involving them, yielding the recovery of N32.7billion and $445,000 thus far

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

As the Nigerian anti-graft agency intensifies investigations into allegations in the Ministry, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has affirmed it is currently probing an “intricate web of fraudulent practices” in the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.

Dele Oyewale, Spokesperson at EFCC, in a statement issued Sunday, April 14, 2024, noted: “At the outset of investigations, past and suspended officials of the Humanitarian Ministry were invited by the Commission and investigations into the alleged fraud involving them have yielded the recovery of N32.7billion and $445,000 so far.”

The statement also read: “Discreet investigations by the EFCC have opened other fraudulent dealings involving Covid-19 funds, the World Bank loan, Abacha recovered loot released to the Ministry by the Federal Government to execute its poverty alleviation mandate.

“Investigations have also linked several interdicted and suspended officials of the Ministry to the alleged financial malfeasance.”

EFCC probing ‘an intricate web of fraudulent practices’ in Ministry

The Commission, however, clarified that its ongoing investigations are not about individuals.

It stated: “The EFCC is investigating a system and intricate web of fraudulent practices.

“Banks involved in the alleged fraud are being investigated. Managing Directors of the indicted banks have made useful statements to investigators digging into the infractions.”

The EFCC said: “Those found wanting will be prosecuted accordingly.

“Additionally, the EFCC has not cleared anyone allegedly involved in the fraud. Investigations are ongoing and advancing steadily.

“The public is enjoined to ignore any claim to the contrary.”

In respect of the issue of Naira abuse, dollarisation of the economy and enforcement of all extant laws relating to them, the EFCC further stated: “Old videos being exhumed and flying around for the attention of the Commission are noted, as the Commission is sensitive to the fact that its Special Task Force against Naira Abuse and dollarisation of the economy commenced operations on February 7, 2024.

“However, going forward, new videos of such infractions will be investigated and prosecuted.”

It also said: “At the moment, the Commission is investigating several celebrities involved in Naira abuse.

“Many of them have made useful statements to the Commission and many more have been invited by investigators working on the matter.

“The EFCC will not relent in its no-sacred-cow mode of operations and the public should be wary of running foul of laws against the crime.”

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