Bankole fights back…says EFCC’s invitation political
BY EMMA OVUAKPORIE
ABUJA – EMBATTLED Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dimeji Sabur Bankole, yesterday said the invitation sent to him by the anti-graft agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, was politically motivated.
In a letter dated May 31, titled: Re: Investigation activities invitation letter: by Rt Hon Speaker Oladimeji Bankole and addressed to the Chairman of EFCC, Mrs Farida Waziri, stated that “prior to your letter under reference, no letter has ever been addressed to or received by the speaker from your office, even though a lot has been written concerning him on the pages of newspapers in connection with your office on the subject matter in recent times.
“That the speaker has never written any letter to your office, hence your reference to your undated letter in connection with the above subject matter is very strange and has no basis.”
It was further stated that “at no time did the speaker received any request for an interview from your office nor did he request any rescheduling of interview to the 31st May.
“That the speaker of the Federal Republic of Nigeria finds it very curious and unethical that your office preferred to engage in sensational prosecution and conviction on the pages of newspapers on an issue as grave as corruption without ever communicating to him.
“That if your office is desirous of having an interview with the speaker, you should kindly request for such, formally and provide information about any specific issues you are investigating to enable him prepare his response accordingly.
“This is very necessary in view of the fact that the subject matter of your letter does not disclose anything other than “investigation activities” which you would agree is not only vague but nebulous and you would no doubt appreciate the fundamental right of every citizen of Nigeria is guaranteed by the constitution, which you as the chairman of the EFCC must uphold.
“In that regard, all cards must be placed on the table to enable the speaker respond to any relevant issue which you might want to raise.”
Sources close to the speaker told Vanguard that outside the last letter dated May 27, the speaker’s office did not receive any other letter, adding that this really irked him when he read about his invitation on the pages of newspapers that he was invited for an interview.
The source said the whole crisis started when an old generation bank had her account removed from the House of Reps due to the shoddy manner the loan issue was handled,
He said the Senate operated three different accounts, while in the last 12 years, the Reps had only one bank which eventually allowed this matter to snowball into this larger than life shape because the account was moved.
“Un fortunately, this whole saga would have been properly resolved if the bank had not sat on the House money because the money released in this last quarter was seized by the bank.”