EFCC Promises Reward For Whistle Blowers On Elections

As part of collaboration for successful elections, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has warned against votes buying ahead of Saturday’s presidential elections.

The EFCC has also promised reward for any Nigerian with useful information leading to the arrest of culprits, saying that the reward is in accordance with the Whistle Blowing policy.

The Acting Chairman of the EFCC, Mr Ibrahim Magu, has repeatedly warned against voter’s inducement, saying that the full weight of the relevant laws will be applied against perpetrators and receivers of illicit funds to undermine the elections and its national security.

“We wish to warn Nigerians against those who intend to engage in voter’s inducement.

“There are existing laws in the Electoral Act, 2010 (EA), which forbid voters inducement.

“For the avoidance of doubt, Section 124 of the Electoral Act, 2010 says that any person paying money to electorates as bribe at any election is liable to punishment of N500, 000 fine or 12 months imprisonment or both upon conviction.

“Section 124 of the Electoral Act, 2010 also states that any person receiving any money or gift for voting or to refrain from voting at any election will be liable to a maximum fine of N500, 000 or 12 months imprisonment or both.

“We therefore urge Nigerians to avoid or resist inducement from corrupt politicians and vote for the candidates of their choice.

“We also seize this opportunity to state that that EFCC in collaboration with INEC will reward any patriotic citizen that provides authentic information leading to the apprehension of any culprit of vote buying in accordance with the Whistle Blowing Policy.

“Our investigations and intelligence gathering sources have revealed that certain corrupt politicians have perfected plans to pollute the electoral process with illicit and looted funds.

“We also have intelligence reports on the plans by some countries in collaboration with some politicians and looters to bring in foreign currencies to induce voters and undermine the elections.

“But our operatives in collaboration with sister agencies are doing everything possible to block the illicit funds and ensure credible polls in the country.

“It is our collective duty to resist attempts to corrupt our electoral process by exposing the evil perpetrators”, Magu said.

In another development, Mohammed Baba Isah, a manager in Damaturu-based MBC Synergy Limited, standing trial before Justice Ibrahim Wakil Jauro of the Yobe State High court, sitting in Damaturu has, pleaded guilty to a three-count charge, bordering on forgery and criminal misappropriation to the tune of over N16million (Sixteen Million Naira). Isah is being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial crimes Commission, EFCC.

His road to jail began on January 18, 2018 when a complainant brought allegations of criminal misappropriation, parade of counterfeit documents, including secondary school result and possession of forged stamp belonging to some banks against him to the Commission.

Investigations by the EFCC revealed that the complainant invested the sum of N25million in MBC Synergy Limited, where Isah works as manager for the purpose of doing telecommunications business, which the accused dishonestly misappropriated the sum of N16,463, 052 (Sixteen million, Four Hundred and Sixty Three Thousand Fifty Two Naira), out of the sum.

Count one of the charge reads: “That you, Mohammed Baba Isah being the manager of MBC Synergy Limited Damaturu, Yobe State, sometime in the year, 2017 at Damaturu, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court and in such capacity dishonestly converted to your personal use the sum of N16, 463, 052, 00 (Sixteen Million, Four Hundred and Sixty Three Thousand Fifty Two Naira) only, being the proceeds from the N25,000,000 (Twenty Five Million Naira) only, invested in the account of MBC Synergy Limited for the purpose of telecommunication business and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under sections 308 and 309 of the Penal Code, Law of Yobe State of Nigeria respectively.”

The accused pleaded guilty to all the charges. Following the guilty plea, counsel to the prosecution, Khalid Sanusi made an application pursuant to Section 365 (b) of Criminal Procedure Code and Section 78 of the Penal Code, laws of Yobe State praying for an order of the court to commit the convict make restitution to the complainant to the tune of the financial lost incurred; while counsel to the accused F.A Akinola prayed the court not to hand a severe sentence to his client to enable him source and pay the money back to the complainant.

Though Justice Jauro found the accused guilty and ordered that he be remanded in the prison custody, he adjourned the case to February 19, 2019 for sentencing.

Tony Orilade
Ag. Head, Media & Publicity



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