ZAMFARA, Nigeria – The Governor of Zamfara State, Bello Matawalle, has called for the resignation and investigation of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Chairman, AbdulRasheed Bawa, accusing him of corruption and abuse of power.
In a statement released on Wednesday, May 17, 2023, Governor Matawalle claimed that he and other prominent Nigerians possess evidence of corrupt practices, breach of public trust, and abuse of office against Bawa.
He criticised the EFCC chairman for failing to adhere to due process when selling seized assets and engaging in “his brand of plea bargaining” with suspected criminals.
“Bawa should explain, for instance, how he has assumed the role of the plaintiff, prosecutor, and jury and how he has executed his brand of plea bargaining with suspected criminals and saboteurs of the Nigerian economy and agenda who instead of being put on trial, are walking freely all over Nigeria,” said Matawalle.
The governor urged Bawa to make the EFCC’s investigations more inclusive, criticizing recent actions by the commission as “imbalanced, incomplete, hypocritical, and unnecessarily skewed.” Matawalle called for a comprehensive probe covering all officers, including those from the Presidency and the Federal Executive Council.
“In a bid to help the obvious knowledge gap and inertia exhibited by the EFCC Chair, the probe should be all-embracing and cover all officers,” the governor said, later adding, “I demand that the EFCC chair extend similar invitations to officers of the Presidency and members of the Federal Executive Council, which is the highest tier of government in the country.”
Matawalle also called on Bawa to “excuse himself and surrender himself for investigation,” highlighting his own allegations of corruption, high-handedness, and abuse of office against the EFCC Chairman.
He urged Bawa to provide transparency and inclusivity in the commission’s operations, so that “serious-minded officers who have served the people selflessly and meritoriously and are not opposed to an examination of their books, and indeed Nigerians generally take him seriously.”
The governor’s statement concludes with a challenge to Bawa, stating, “Without this, it is just a case of another person in government who has some explaining to do himself over allegations of corruption, high-handedness, and abuse of office now asking others to account, by so doing, merely giving Nigerians comic relief from the present challenging times they are experiencing.”