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Yahaya Bello: Senator Natasha hails EFCC’s probe of N80.2bn fraud



Natasha Akpoti-Uduaghan

Senator representing Kogi Central Senatorial District in the National Assembly, Natasha Akpoti-Uduaghan, has commended the efforts by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC to apprehend and prosecute the immediate past governors of Kogi State, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, over an alleged N80.2 billion fraud.

This is just as she also hailed the EFCC chairman, Ola Olukoyede, for ceding 14 properties that were initially forfeited to the federal government to the government and people of Enugu State.

Reacting to Bello’s excuse for not honouring the EFCC’s invitation, the lawmaker emphasized the need for the commission to investigate other corrupt public officials to avoid the impression that their actions against former governor were meant to witch hunt him.

In a now-viral video, the EFCC chairman had claimed Belloh told him that a female senator (name withheld) allegedly gathered journalists to humiliate him anytime he was at the agency’s Abuja office for interrogation.

“I called Yahaya Bello, as a serving governor, to come to my office to clear himself. I shouldn’t have done that. But he said because a certain senator had planted over 100 journalists in my office, he would not come.

“I told him that he would be allowed to use my private gate to give him a cover, but he said my men should come to his village to interrogate him,” Olukoyede was quoted as saying.

But Senator Natasha in a statement signed by her Chief Press Secretary, Arogbonlo Israel and issued at the weekend in Abuja, reminded Yahaya Bello of the importance of respecting Nigeria’s laws and constitution, given his former position as the chief security officer of Kogi.

“I was surprised to hear that Yahaya Bello evaded the invitation from the EFCC, despite having served as Kogi’s former chief security officer. As a former governor, he should understand the importance of respecting Nigeria’s laws and constitution.

“It’s a well-known fact that ‘he who comes into equity must come with clean hands’. As such, I advise him to honour the invitation and clear his name while he still has the chance.

“I’d also like to take this moment to appreciate the diligence of the EFCC in handling the case so far. No Nigerian is above the law, and therefore the agency must see this case through to the end if they are to gain the trust of both Nigerians and the international community in the fight against corruption,” she said.

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