Operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission(EFCC) manhandled journalists at its head office in Abuja on Friday as a group of activists, including the convener, Concerned Nigerians, Deji Adeyanju, submitted a petition to the commission.
According to The Punch, the activists visited the EFCC head office to submit a petition titled, ‘Petition to investigate the source of money conveyed in bullion vans to the home of Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu on the eve of 2019 presidential election’ and addressed to the Acting Chairman, Ibrahim Magu.
However, while Adeyanju was addressing journalists by the road leading to the commission’s head office, armed security personnel attached to the anti-graft agency threatened the activists and journalists, ordering Adeyanju to halt the address.
The two gun-wielding security personnel proceeded to seize and drag the cameras from the journalists.
The harassment continued for over a minute until the protests of the journalists and the activists began to create a scene.
Turning to the security personnel, Adeyanju said, “You will not do the right thing. You will come and be harassing ordinary citizens.
“Why would you tell me to leave this place? The harassment is too much. This is a public institution.”
Speaking to journalists on the petition, Adeyanju said: “Remember, a few days ago, the EFCC challenged Nigerians that the reason they cannot investigate Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu over the election eve bullion vans sighted at his residence was because there was no petition to that effect.
“Some of us have already taken up the challenge which is exactly the reason we are here and, basically, I believe that, as citizens of our country, we must always ensure that the right thing is done at all times.
“You can see that, even as we are addressing the press, members of the EFCC are harassing us, instead of going to Bourdillon to go and do this work.”
The petition noted that Section 7 (1) (b) of the EFCC Establishment Act 2004 gives the Commission the power to investigate properties of any person that appears to the commission that the person’s lifestyle and extent of the properties are not justified by his source of income.
It added, “To the best of our knowledge, Mr Bola Ahmed Tinubu is a private citizen who ordinarily should not be seen with a convoy of bullion vans.
“The questions begging for answers are: What are bullion vans doing in the house of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu? Who owns the content, believed to be cash in the bullion vans that were seen entering the house of Bola Ahmed Tinubu on the eve of Nigerian presidential elections?
“Has the commission, based on its core mandates, investigated the source of the bullion vans? Is Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s house, now a bank where bullion vans now take money to?”
The activists called on the commission to, as a matter of urgency, “swing into action” and begin an investigation into the appearance of the bullion vans.
Other activists who signed the petition were Ariyo-Dare Atoye of the Coalition in Defence of Nigerian Democracy and Constitution and Adebayo Raphael of the Free Nigeria Movement.