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Siege on Yaya Bello’s Residence: Group Asks the President to Rein the Anti-graft Agency

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By Abel Nwankwo

 

A group under the aegis of the Northern Youth Progressives Assembly (NYPA) has called on the President, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu (BAT) to rein on the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) who has laid siege on the Abuja home of Yaya Bello, erstwhile governor of Kogi State in pursuance of the case of 84 billion Naira fraud allegedly committed by the youthful governor while in the office.

The group alleges that the case is that of political witch-hunting insinuating that some powers within the party hierarchy that are intimidated by the rising profile of the former governor are responsible for his current travails, noting the obvious contradiction in the alleged case. It is observed that the former number one citizen of Kogi State is being charged for the fraud allegedly committed in September 2015 whereas the accused became governor on January 16, 2016. Again, in 2022, one Ali Bello and Dauda Suleiman who were neither in government nor appointees were charged with the same offense.

Speaking to newsmen in a press interview in Abuja, the leader of the group, Mallam Aliyu Usman Mustapha said that they are not against the anti-graft agency doing its work but they must follow the rules of engagement. “They should do the work in a fair, transparent, and lawful manner. They should not make the agency a tool in the hands of unscrupulous power-hungry politicians.

He recalled that there is a subsisting court judgment restraining the EFCC from molesting, harassing, and arresting the accused pending the determination of the substantive suit on his fundamental human rights. He opined that the attempt to arrest Bello despite this extant court order is a slap on the judiciary and the rule of law.

Mallam Mustapha, therefore called on the President to use his good offices to prevail on the nation’s foremost anti-graft agency to avoid abuse of power and miscarriage of justice. He noted that “Yaya Bello is an inspiration to the youth and an asset to the party. He has paid his dues and should not be rubbished or made a scapegoat. Bello stood for the party in trying times. During the CBN cash-swap brouhaha, it was Bello who stuck up his neck; he stood on the side of the people and BAT and galvanized the other governors to fight the repressive ill-conceived policy of the apex bank,” Mallam Mustapha concluded.

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