PDP Tackles EFCC over Ex-Governor Ahmed, Banu’s Travails in Kwara

Hammed Shittu in Ilorin

The Kwara State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday berated  the Ilorin Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over the ongoing travails of the  former Governor of the state, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed, and former state Commissioner for Finance, Hon. Demola Banu.

The party noted that: “The charges filed against Governor Ahmed and Banu are virtually the same charges the EFCC had in 2020, declared to be baseless and unfounded which led to the discharge of Banu in 2020.

A statement issued in Ilorin yesterday and signed by the party’s Publicity Secretary, Mr. Olusola Adewara, however, said: “And in our estimation, it is utterly laughable to allege that two individuals diverted Kwara State resources for merely performing their constitutional responsibilities and duties.”

The statement also accused the EFCC of engaging in blackmail and sensationalism in the agency’s prosecution of Ahmed and Banu.

The statement read: “It should be noted that Alhaji Abdulfatah as the then governor of Kwara State had unfettered powers to run the state according to the laid down laws and guidelines which he did, while Hon. Ademola Banu as the then Commissioner for Finance did not also act outside the budget of the Kwara State Government as approved by the Kwara State House of Assembly.

“And from Hon. Banu’s antecedents, all financial transactions of the Kwara State Government during his time as commissioner were not contrary to financial guidelines of the state where inputs were taken from different departments of the Ministry of Finance, the Permanent Secretary, the Accountant General of the State, the Treasury arm of the state, the state House of Assembly before any fund was released based on the approval of the governor.

“Importantly, the EFCC has failed to bring forth any concrete or credible material fact or evidence to nail Banu which led to the earlier withdrawal of the charges against him in 2020, and it is worrisome that these same charges have now been refiled against Banu and former Governor Ahmed.”

It added: “We submitted that EFCC deliberately misled the court when it claimed that Banu jumped administrative bail and consequently demanded that bench warrant be issued against him.

“At no point in time did Banu refuse to honour any invitation from the EFCC. In fact, the anti-graft agency did not extend an invitation to Banu and the court was misled by the agency into issuing a bench warrant against the former commissioner.

“We would, therefore, like to assert as a party that Banu, a prominent member of our party, and an illustrious son of Kwara, State, did not jump bail and he had no reason to do so.”