Kingsley Fanwo, Kogi commissioner for information, has alleged that some politicians with interest in the 2023 presidency hired the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to discredit Yahaya Bello, the state governor.
Over the past months, the anti-graft agency and the Kogi government have been at loggerheads over allegations that the state runs an account in Sterling Bank containing N20 billion bailout loan.
The EFCC had alleged that there were suspicious fraudulent activities related to the account.
In August, a federal high court sitting in Lagos froze a Kogi state salary bailout account domiciled in Sterling Bank Plc following an ex-parte application brought by the EFCC.
On Friday, the EFCC stated that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has received N19.3 billion recovered from the state account domiciled in the bank.
Speaking with journalists in Lagos, on Sunday, Fanwo stated that the EFCC is only chasing shadows, while it described the incident as a hatchet job conceived by politicians and executed by the anti-graft agency.
“This is the height of irresponsibility by an agency charged with the responsibility of fighting corruption in our country,” Fanwo said.
“Certain individuals with interest in 2023, have hired some agencies to discredit our governor before 2023. They attempted to use the NFIU, ICPC, Code of Conduct. They have finally settled for EFCC, which has all along acted as hired guns for these individuals to discredit and vilify Bello.
“We’ll not stop fighting until the EFCC apologise to Kogi and stop being used for political reasons. EFCC cannot be trusted with the responsibility of fighting corruption.
“The Kogi state government states categorically that it knows nothing about the money returned to CBN. The Kogi state government denies the account where the alleged fund was warehoused.
“This is a hatched job conceived by politicians and executed by the EFCC. The EFCC is chasing shadows and wants to tarnish the governor’s political image by portraying him as a corrupt governor.”
The commissioner asked the EFCC to apologise to the governor within 48 hours or face legal actions.