Peaceful protesters storm EFCC office, demand Obasa’s probe

Members of the Civil Society Network Against Corruption on Tuesday staged a peaceful protest at the Lagos office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and submitted a petition against the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa.

The placards- carrying protesters , who were received by the head of the anti – graft agency in Lagos , Mohammed Rabo , said they wanted the EFCC to investigate allegations of financial impropriety against Obasa.

Speaking before presenting the petition to Rabo , the Coordination of CISNAC, Shina Odugbemi , said , “ Our mission here this morning is to present you a letter about an issue in the city, Lagos State .

Everywhere is awash with the accusation that the Speaker of the state House of Assembly is squandering money .

We pick issues and we ensure that we follow issues to logical conclusions. This is one of the steps.

“ We have come here today to present to you our petition that contains a catalogue of allegations.

The truth is that these are allegations until they are investigated and until a court of competent jurisdiction rules over them , we can ’ t say somebody is a thief or not.

But what we are against is that in the Lagos State House of Assembly, there is a conspiracy to sweep these things under the carpet. ”

Responding, Rabo assured the protesters that the EFCC would give the petition the required attention.

He, however, stressed that allegations do not automatically translate into guilt.

He said , “ I have received your petition and in our usual way, we don’ t segregate if there is any allegation .

But like you rightly said , an allegation does not confirm the guilt of a person until investigations are well established .

“ So , I want to assure you that like every other petition we receive , we will give it the required attention.

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“ We have our process here .

This is the first process , you have submitted a petition ; we will go into it and we will commence earnestly . ”

The placards carried by the protesters were headed with
Obasagate , followed by inscriptions such as “ Lagos must breathe ”; “ Lagos Assembly must be free ”; “ Rip-off : N 84 m for wives and mistresses ”; and “ EFCC must investigate Mr Speaker” , among others.

The group , in the petition signed by its chairman , Olanrewaju Suraju , listed “ purchase of a bulletproof car at a market value of less than N 100 m and the inflation of its price to N 300 m ; as well as unilateral purchase of 40 cars for members of the Assembly with neither prior discussion with members nor official approval by the House ” as some of the allegations they want the EFCC to probe Obasa on.

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