EFCC recovers N32.7bn, $445,000 from humanitarian ministry

EFCC and Betta Edu


The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) it has recovered a combined total of N32.7bn and $445,000 has been recovered so far from the ministry.

The commission gave the reveletion while dispelling commentaries, opinions, assumptions, and insinuations concerning the progress of its mobile investigations into the alleged financial misappropriation in the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.

The statement signed by the spokesperson for the EFCC, Dele Oyewale, said the recoveries were made after past and suspended officials of the Humanitarian Ministry were invited by the commission.

Earlier, a coalition of 10 Civil Society Organisations under the aegis of Civil Society Groups Against Defamation Initiative, had urged President BolaTinubu to promptly reinstate Edu should the ongoing investigations exonerate her from any wrongdoing.

However, in the Sunday night statement, Oyewale said, “The EFCC has noticed the rising tide of commentaries, opinions, assumptions and insinuations concerning its progressive investigations into the alleged financial misappropriation in the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management, and Social Development.

“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 N32.7bn and $445,000 so far.

“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.

“It is instructive to stress that the Commission’s investigations are not about individuals. 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.

“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.

“On the issue of the works of the Commission against Naira abuse, dollarisation of the economy, and the enforcement of all extant laws relating to them, the EFCC appreciates the avalanche of public awakening, support and involvement demonstrated so far. Increasingly, members of the public are drawing the attention of the Commission to video recordings of abuse of the Naira by Nigerians from all walks of life.

“These gestures amply demonstrate the rising consciousness of the public to the sanctity of our national currency and the need for collaborative engagement to sustain the tempo.

“To this end, the Commission will always investigate and prosecute anyone involved in the abuse of the Naira. 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 Dollarization of the Economy commenced operations on February 7, 2024.

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

“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 afoul of laws against the crime.”

Last week, the EFCC announced that it is probing 50 bank accounts, while noting that it has now recovered a total of N30bn in the ongoing probe of the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, involving alleged money laundering.

The development was revealed in a bulletin titled, “EFCC Alert,” detailing some major arrests, prosecutions, and recoveries made by the commission within the last month.

The document authorised by the EFCC Chairman, Ola Olukoyede, which was obtained by our correspondent on Monday, revealed that the recovered N30bn is now in the Federal Government’s coffers.


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