Fourteen years after former Rivers State governor Peter Odili prevented The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) from investigating him for a 100 billion money laundering case, the EFCC has now announced its decision to reopen the case.
The former Rivers governor got a court injunction preventing the EFCC from investigating or arresting him in 2007, and the anti-corruption agency was also restrained from probing him and the finances of the Rivers state government, TheCable reports.
However, the acting chairman of EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, on Tuesday, said investigation into allegations of money laundering against the former governor will be reopened. He also warned against oil bunkering in the Niger Delta, saying it is economic sabotage. Magu said:
“I think Rivers is the next to Lagos in terms of crime. This is the headquarter of money laundering because there is a lot of oil money here. Nothing is going to stop us. Even the issue of the court order allegedly obtained by Dr Peter Odili and co to stop the EFCC from investigation and prosecution is still at the Supreme Court. We are on it.
I am telling you that, that judgement cannot stand; it will only take some time but it cannot hold and we are going to conclude the investigation. There are so many investigations we are doing. I am sure the matter has suffered for about 13 years now. We are going to test it. The matter is in the Supreme Court. We will follow it up.
That decision that is pending in the Supreme Court cannot hold water again. There is a subsequent judgment that has overridden it. Other judgments say nobody, not even a judge, not even the Judiciary, not even the court can stop us from investigating and prosecuting. Let me also use this medium to warn against illegal oil bunkering. Perpetrators should desist from their nefarious operations. The EFCC is resolute in its fight against economic sabotage and oil theft.
The Niger Delta is highly significant to our national economy and the Commission will continue to do all that is lawful and patriotic in ensuring that operators of illegal oil bunkering are brought to book.”