Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Defection To APC Won’t Stop Prosecution Of Corrupt Politicians, Presidency Warns

 The defection of politicians accused of corruption from other political parties to the ruling All Progressives Congress will not stop them from being investigated and prosecuted, the Presidency has said. The Special Adviser to the President on Media and

Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, said this in an interview with one of our correspondents.

Adesina was asked if defection from PDP to the APC was enough to save those already implicated in the $2.1bn arms scandal from investigation and prosecution.

A former Minister of Sports, Chief Jim Nwobodo, who had been named as one of the beneficiaries of some funds distributed by a former Minister of State for Finance, Bashir Yuguda, defected from the PDP to the APC on Friday.

Nwobodo said he was the Chairman of the Contact Committee of the PDP Presidential Campaign for the South-East, and the only fund received by the committee for its work was N100m from PDP’s National Chairman, Dr. Adamu Mu’azu.

Adesina, however, said the present administration’s anti-corruption fight would not be based on party affiliation, adding that the President would not encourage any cover-up.

“It is not in the nature of this administration to cover anyone who has questions to answer on corruption, irrespective of party affiliation,” he said.

The presidential spokesman explained that the release of a former military governor of Kaduna State and a chieftain of the APC, Jafaru Isa, by the EFCC had nothing to do with Isa’s relationship with the President.

Isa, who was quizzed by the commission, was said to have been released after he refunded N100m of the N170m he allegedly received from the embattled Dasuki.

“The EFCC is in a better position to tell you why Jafaru Isa was released. But it definitely has nothing to do with his relationship with the President. If that were the case, then he would not have been picked in the first place,” he said.

Meanwhile, the EFCC on Monday said it had not invited Jonathan for questioning in connection with the arms fund probe because no document had established a link between the former President and the distribution of the fund for other purposes other than arms purchase.

The acting Chairman of the commission, Mr. Ibrahim Magu, explained that the former President could not be arrested as some had canvassed as no document had been traced to Jonathan, giving any approval for the disbursement of the money for any other purpose than arms procurement.

Magu, who spoke with some online publishers in Lagos, added that those who had been quizzed so far in connection with the fund were people who either collected or redistributed the money for reasons other than the purchase of arms.

“All approvals by former President Jonathan did not mention that it was for political purposes. All the memos approved by him were for the purchase of arms,” Magu added.



-PUNCH

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