Mallam Nuhu Ribasdu, a former chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission EFCC says without full independence of the anti-graft agency, the fight against corruption would be a mirage.
The former EFCC boss was speaking as a guest lecturer yesterday in Abuja at a special Town Hall meeting organized by Shehu Yar’ Adua Foundation in conjunction with MacArthure Foundation in Abuja.
According to Ribadu, for the EFCC to win the war, it must be immune to external influences, must be encouraged and supported with adequate funding and independence to function optimally in the discharge of its duties.
‘‘The institutions must be encouraged and supported. How do we do that? By giving them independent, let no one interfere with the way they run their affairs. This issue about the leadership of the EFCC and the National Assembly.
‘‘It is only fair and proper to remove institutions like that from control of others. If they are going to do this work on behalf of Nigerians, they must be free. ‘
‘Just like the Inspector General of Police, the constitution says, he does not need any clearance from the national Assembly because the constitution recognizes that the work he is doing requires him to stand alone, independently.
“The same thing with the NSA and Director of DSS, they do not go to the senate for clearance, the same with the Chief of Army staff. Then, why are we saying the EFCC should go to Senate for clearance? If EFCC is going to handle cases involving members of National Assembly and the same EFCC is going to pass through them. How on earth is that going to be possible? Some of these things are critical if we want to win this war against corruption,” he said.
He also reiterated the need to encourage the anti-graft bodies to do their work and begin to get proper and good convictions as according to him, they are very important to the war against corruption.