Soni Daniel, Abuja
The Economic Crimes and Financial Crimes Commission has denied that its recent investigation into how the Head of Service, Winifred Oyo-Ita, allegedly got embroiled in a contract fraud to the tune of N3 billion, was not triggered by pressure from the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari.
The Commission said in a statement on Monday by its Spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren, that the probe of Oyo-Ita was prompted by intelligence at its disposal.
The commission said that its probes are often evidence-based and not prompted by powerful government officials as the anti-graft agency, which is independent, carries out its assignment without fear or favour.
Wilson explained that the attempt to link the probe to Abba Kyari was the handiwork of mischief- makers and should be ignored by right-thinking Nigerians.
The statement said: “The attention of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has been drawn to reports by a section of the media, insinuating that the ongoing investigation of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Mrs Winifred Oyo-Ita by the Commission was instigated by the Chief of Staff to the President, Alhaji Abba Kyari.
“The Commission wishes to state that there is no truth in these claims, and urges the general public to disregard the reports as the handiwork of mischief-makers.
“For the avoidance of doubt, an investigation by the EFCC is evidence-based. Most often, they are triggered by petitions or intelligence. In the case of the HoS, Oyo- Ita’s investigation, it was prompted by intelligence received by the Commission.
“The EFCC is an independent agency created by law to fight corruption without fear or favour. In the discharge of its mandate, the Commission does not take instructions from extraneous bodies neither will it lend itself to be used to settle scores by anyone.
“The Commission again wishes to appeal to the media to be circumspect in their reportage and not lend themselves to actions that could befuddle the activities of the commission,” the spokesman said.