EFCC Denies Detaining Justice Mbaba, Says Property He Occupies was Under Investigation

Kingsley Nwezeh in Abuja

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), yesterday, denied detaining the Presiding Justice  of the Court of Appeals, Kano Division, Ita Mbaba.

EFCC, in a statement, said the justice was neither arrested nor detained by the agency, but that the property he occupied was under investigation.

There were reports that armed operatives from the commission invaded the house of Mbaba.

General Secretary of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Ade Adegbite Esq, said in a post shared on his social media handle that the Bar would not allow such act to slide.

He said the premises of the presiding justice was invaded in the early hours of yesterday by the EFCC officials but no arrest took place.

But the agency said the judge was not the target of the raid.

“The attention of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission,  EFCC, has been drawn to some reports  in the Social Media,  alleging that its operatives,  in the Kano Zonal Command,  ‘invaded’  the residence  of the  Presiding Justice of the Court of  Appeal,  Kano Division,   Honourable Justice Ita Mbaba,  located on Sheik Yusuf Adam Game street, off Race Cross Road, Nassarawa Government Reservation Area, Kano.

“While it is true that operatives of the commission visited the property housing Hon. Justice Mbaba  on a property verification exercise,  owing to a subsisting matter involving the owner of the property,  there is no truth, linkage or  nexus with any investigation of the Honourable Justice of the Court of Appeal 

“Available facts showed that  Hon. Justice Mbaba is not the owner of the property and could, therefore, not be the subject of any investigation by the Commission.  We wish to restate that Hon. Justice Ita Mbaba is not under any investigation by the EFCC. The commission holds the Judiciary in optimum respect and would do nothing to embarrass any officer of the court,” it said.

Meanwhile, operatives of the agency have arrested a suspected fraudster,  Hassan Babangida Hassan, over alleged criminal conspiracy, employment scam and forgery.

He was arrested in Kano, yesterday, September 7, 2022, based on alleged fraudulent claims of being an employment agent that could secure jobs for applicants in different ministries and parastatals. 

He allegedly defrauded an applicant, Usman Rilwan, of the sum of N14,950, 000 in the guise of getting a paid job for him. 

A separate statement by the agency said Rilwan alleged that he paid the suspect the money as a “facilitation fee” to “process” the offer of the job.  

Hassan allegedly issued his victim an appointment letter,  which upon presentation was discovered to be fake

EFCC said the suspect would be charged to court as soon as investigations were concluded.

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