Legal Nigeria

No petition against Obi pending before EFCC – Intersociety

South East-based civil rights group, International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law (Intersociety) has disclosed that the organisation has no petition whatsoever against former Anambra Governor and now presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Mr Peter Obi, pending before the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Intersociety in a statement released in Onitsha on Tuesday signed by its Board Chairman, Emeka Umeagbalasi and two other principal officers of the organisation, Chinwe Umeche and Chidimma Udegbunam frowned at what it called the resurgence of frivolous publications and out-of-date others on social media aimed at the misrepresentation of facts and politicisation of same so as to portray certain respected persons in a bad light.

The group clarified that in 2009 during the first tenure of Peter Obi as Anambra Governor, he was accused of moving N250m to be laundered and Intersociety took the matter up and petitioned the EFCC and the Inspector General of Police; urging the duo to forensically investigate Obi and recommend appropriately if he was found involved.

Intersociety said it also launched its own investigation and in the end, it was discovered that the matter was a setup oiled by Obi’s political opponents who secretly placed some of his clerical aides under secret monthly pay so as to monitor and wire every movement made by the then Governor for malicious reasons.

The group said that investigation then found out that the N250m was meant for physical cash purchase of dozens of fairly used vehicles for some top government appointees that operated for years without official cars while the vehicles were for ‘pay-on-delivery’ at Lagos.

It revealed that the EFCC and the Nigeria Police Force authorities after their respective investigations found Obi not involved in money laundering and the vehicles were later purchased, delivered and deployed.

It regretted that since then, hired or paid agents have formed the habit of resurrecting the online version of the petition especially prior to or during important electioneering periods.

“These, they do with intent to misinform and mislead the public and denigrate the person and character of the respected former Anambra Gov (Peter Obi).

“They did it in 2010 during the first staggered Governorship Election in Anambra State and repeated same in 2013 during Obiano’s first election; 2015 during the presidential election; 2017 during Obiano’s second election against Oseloka Obaze and others; 2019 during Buhari’s second election against Atiku/Obi and others; and it is being repeated following the conclusion of the presidential primaries and nearness of the all-important 2023 presidential poll.”

On another spurious allegation flying on the internet presently alleging that Obi was behind the dumping of corpses in Ezu River during the twilight of his tenure as Governor in 2013, Intersociety also said linking Obi to Ezu River Police SARS Killings amounts to pure stigmatisation and false labelling.

“It must be placed on irrefutable record that Intersociety (and Anambra CLO to an extent) was the only human rights group that forensically investigated the Ezu River Police SARS killings and followed up and defended same up to the office of the then DIG, Force Criminal Investigations, now retired DIG Peter Gana in April 2013.

“As captioned above, the killings were solely perpetrated by Police SARS under retired CSP James Nwafor and then CP Bala. The victims were detainees arrested and detained at Awkuzu, Neni and Nnewi SARS detention facilities and among the slain victims were nine members of MASSOB and others numbering about thirty, accused of perpetrating violent crimes.“

“Just like in the case of the N250 million falsely labelled, the politically hired or paid agents have also formed the habit of resurrecting on social media the Ezu River Police SARS killings following the nearness of the 2023 presidential poll. This, they did in 2013 and repeated in 2015, 2017 and 2019 and it is being repeated following the conclusion of the presidential primaries and nearness of the all-important 2023 presidential poll.”

“The most unfortunate and annoying of it all was linking intersociety with such publications in bad faith especially by making them look like newly issued statements. Another worrying part of it was a clear misrepresentation of facts in connection with some happenings in the past targeted at the demonisation of certain respected persons. The malicious publications, circumstantially speaking, strongly bear the trademarks of integrity challenged Igbo politicians working for their selfish aggrandisement or for integrity challenged political gladiators from outside the South East region who pioneer the hateful and discriminatory policy of “born-to-rule” and “born-to-be-ruled”.

Intersociety disclosed that its leaders were doggedly committed to ballot revolution and actualisation of the Nigerian Presidency of South East extraction.

“It must further be stated that the ballot revolution and presidency of the South East extraction are far beyond what Peter Obi can handle as a person, and as such, the respected former Anambra Governor only symbolises the priceless and sacrificial project; collectively seeking, among other things, for dignity and honour of the Igbo people in particular and other suppressed ethnic nationalities in general. That is to say that the “Obi Ballot Tsunami” is a renaissance or reawakening; a new wind of change that has hit the airwaves of the Nigerian landscape and polity irrespective of cultural, or ethnic, religious, gender and class divides,” the group said.

Credit : THE SUN.