Economic and Financial Crimes Commission(EFCC) Ilorin zone comprising Kwara, Kogi and Ekiti states has said that, about 20 senior officials of the Kwara state government have been investigated for alleged corrupt practices in the state public service.
By Hammed Shittu in Ilorin
The commission said over 15 properties of the affected officials in choice areas within Ilorin metropolis ranging from hotels filling station, residential accommodation and micro-finance had been uncovered and investigated.
Speaking at a news conference in Ilorin, Kwara state capital on Tuesday, the zonal head of the commission, Mr.Isyaku Sharu, said that, “the affected senior officials ranging in status from assistant directors , deputy directors, accountant, to treasurers among others and whose monthly salary are not more than N90,000”.
He also said that N10bn that was to be stolen by the immediate past administration was intercepted and saved for the current administration.
According to him, “You will agree with me that official corruption is the greatest killer as officials who ordinarily are supposed to guard and protect state resources have turned out to misappropriate it.
“To this end , the commission beams its searchlight on the Kwara state officials and on a credible tip off,the commission is currently investigating over fifteen properties in choice areas within Ilorin metropolis ranging from hotels, filling stations, residential accommodation, micro finance among others.
“It will shock you to hear that the alleged owners are civil servants whose earning per month is not more than N90,000(ninety thousand naira per month).Some have confessed to the commission and the matter is in court”
The EFCC zonal head also told journalists that the commission successfully intercepted billions of naira that the last administration wanted to pilfer few days to its exit.
He said,”It has always been a tradition in the country except microscopic few that whenever any government is exiting, it will indulge in mass pilferage as the last minute golden opportunity, hence our resolve to mount surveillance on all Kwara state government account between 24th to 29th May 2019 when the state received FAAC, JAAC VAT and tax refund from the federal government to the tune of about N10billion.I can authoritatively tell you that we saved the state last minute attempted financial misappropriation of those billions.”
Mr Sharu also said that since the commission commenced operations in Ilorin in December 2018, N50m cash had been recovered from fraudsters based on petitions and the money returned to the real owners.
“These include those recoveries from some state legislators who allegedly duped some people.The commission also has over N200m on interim forfeiture,” he added.
He stressed that, “In order to sanitise electoral system in the state and discourage vote buying the commission has commenced campaign against the exercise across the state”, adding that on the eve of the last general election, to date we have a case before the state high court on vote buying awaiting judgement.”
The EFCC zonal boss said the commission was fighting internet fraudsters in the zone to a stand still as 29 cases had been charged to both state and federal high courts while as at last Friday 15 of the cases had been convicted.
He said, “The court also ordered their exotic cars and monies running to millions of naira in their bank accounts forfeited to federal government.”