Falana urges DSS to speed up investigations on Emefiele, Bawa

A HUMAN rights lawyer Femi Falana has urged the Department of State Services (DSS) to hasten investigations into cases involving the suspended Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Godwin Emefiele and Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Abdulrasheed Bawa.

The Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) made the appeal during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today, on Friday, June 30. 

He urged the DSS to arraign the two in court if there is evidence of wrongdoing against them, stressing that the continued detention of Emefiele and Bawa undermined the implementation of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act.

The Department of State Services (DSS) on June 10 confirmed the arrest of Emefiele, who was suspended by President Bola Tinubu as CBN governor.

Tinubu having suspended Emefiele, directed him to hand over the affairs of his office to the deputy governor, operations directorate, Folashodun Shonubi.

The DSS did not state or give any specific reason why Emefiele was arrested. However, the arrest may not be unconnected with the allegations the DSS had placed against him.

DSS had last year attempted to arrest Emefiele, accusing him of financing terrorism, aiding and abetting terrorism, and committing economic crimes.

Similarly, on June 15, the suspended EFCC boss, Bawa was invited by the secret police immediately after Tinubu suspended him indefinitely to allow proper investigation into his conduct while in office.

“This follows weighty allegations of abuse of office levelled against him. Mr Bawa has been directed to immediately handover the affairs of his office to the Director, Operations in the Commission, who will oversee the affairs of the Office of the Chairman of the Commission pending the conclusion of the investigation,” parts of a statement by the spokesperson of the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Willie Bassey, read.






     

     

    Reacting to the continuous detainment of the duo, Falana called on the Nigerian government to follow due process.

    He said: “Investigations should be speedily conducted, more so where allegations are made. I do not expect any delay in the investigation of the very serious allegation that has been made.

    “In the case of Emefiele, the State Security Services last year alleged his involvement in terrorism financing. Please, quickly do something about that. With respect to money laundering and other offences, take them to the appropriate agencies of government.

    “In the case of Mr Bawa, we haven’t been told the offences he committed. I cannot speak very confidently with respect to the gentleman except to ask the government or the agencies involved to speed up an investigation and have them arraigned if they are indicted.”

    Usman Mustapha is a solution journalist with International Centre for Investigative Reporting. You can easily reach him via: [email protected]. He tweets @UsmanMustapha_M

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