Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
The disengaged Special Investigator to the Special Presidential Investigation Panel on Recovery of Public Property (SPIP), Mr. Victor Uwajeh, has alleged that his recent removal was because he refused toÂ investigate some serving senators, including Senate President, Bukola Saraki, and other opposition People Democratic Party (PDP) stalwarts.
He also mentioned former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, Senator Jonah Jang, Mrs. Patience Jonathan, Femi Fani-Kayode, amongÂ the list of persons given to him to investigate.
Uwajeh, a private investigator and former consultant to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), was recently employed by the Okoi Obono Obla-led presidential panel but was disengaged about a month later.
While giving the reasons for his disengagement in a statement he signed yesterday, the London-based private investigator alleged that his refusal to act on the courier documents sent to him from Nigeria by the government which comprises some names perceived to be enemies of the current administration was responsible for his disengagement.
According to the statement: â€œIt was the procedure of the Panel to courier documents to me from Nigeria for dispatch to various agencies in the United Kingdom and worldwide.
â€œSoon after, I realised that the panel has a mindset towards certain individuals and groups by the documents it sent to me.
â€œDocuments sent to me from Abuja to dispatch to the Serious Fraud Office and Home Office, Metropolitan Police, FBI and EUROPOL had the names of the following senators: Senate President Saraki, Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu, Senator Albert Bassey Akpan and Senator Stella Adaeze Oduah.â€
Uwajeh revealed that he had suggested some names of APC members â€œwho are high looters that I recommended for proper investigation but it was turned down.
â€œThis raised a red flag and as a professional, I made my complaint immediately and made my position known to Okoi Obono Obla to transmit to the Attorney General and Minister of Justice.
â€œI told him that I will not be a party to one sided investigation to muscle in the opposition and persecute them. I made my position known that I am ready to expose corruption and recover stolen assets as a professional but will not be involved in the politics of â€œpull then downâ€ in Nigeria.
â€œMy refusal to dance to the tune of the Government and SIPP led to my disengagement.
â€œAfter meeting in London on 18th April, 2018 with some officials during the CHOGM, it was evident that I will not bulge in my position not to go against the ethics of my profession by investigating only the opposition.
â€œAs soon as they arrived Nigeria onÂ Â April 23, 2018, they drafted a letter to disengage me. They kept the letter and wanted me to change my mind but I refused. On April, 27 2018, they sent me a backdated letter of disengagement datedÂ Â April 23, 2018.
â€œIn the said letter it was alleged that I had a criminal allegation against me pending in court as the reason for my disengagement which is laughable.â€
Uwajeh said any right-thinking person should question why it took the government of President Muhammadu Buhari a full month to know that he had a case in court.
â€œMy refusal has led to a sustained assault on my person by the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice Abubakar Malami.
â€œMy refusal to work with the APC-led government to humiliate the so-called enemies of government has led me into exile. The Nigeria Police led by Ibrahim Kpotun Idris has continued to side with Senator Emmanuel Nnamdi Uba (Andy Uba) to stop him from paying me my professional fees. IG Idris is an expert in setting people up and twisting issues to incriminate his enemies.
â€œ Malami, Idris and Mohammed Etsu should note that they cannot continue to be in this position forever and remember that power is transient.
â€œI will continue to maintain my dignity even in the face of a gang up against me.
â€œNigeria can only move forward when the fight against corruption is not selective but holistic no matter whose ox is gored.â€