EFCC in financial trouble, delays lawyers’ payment.

Ibrahim Lamorde EFCC boss

The Federal Government’s anti-graft war, which many have dismissed as below average, may collapse as the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, one of the agencies saddled with the responsibility of prosecuting the campaign, is said to be broke.

Investigations revealed that the EFCC had been finding it difficult to meet its obligations to the lawyers handling cases on its behalf.

The most affected are senior lawyers in charge of cases against influential politicians/ suspects who are either involved in high profile money laundering or outright stealing.

One of the lawyers, who disclosed this on condition of anonymity, said he and some of his colleagues, were not happy with the turn of events.

He said that some of them had not been paid their professional fees for long, adding that this was capable of affecting their performance in court.

The lawyer said, “It may interest you to know that we have not been paid for long. I believe that the commission is broke.”

It was also gathered that the cash crunch had seriously affected the commission to the extent that its enlightenment programmes on radio and television stations had been suspended.

The programmes called Zero Tolerance, is used to educate Nigerians on the evils of corruption in the society.

Apart from that, the commission needed for also uses the programmes to inform Nigerians about its activities and ongoing cases in court.

The presenters of the programmes, especially those on television, interview notable people in the society on the evils of corruption.

But the inability of the commission to pay the affected stations, our correspondent gathered, made it to suspend the programmes.

A top source in the commission said, “It is painful that we could be in this mess. Imagine an agency fighting corruption to be financially incapacitated? It is bad.

“The programmes we suspended were designed to project the commission and also keep Nigerians abreast of the activities of the commission.

“But now, they are dead because we can’t pay the affected stations. We could have suspended the publication of our in-house magazine as well, but the Chairman resisted it and vowed to make sure that it is not suspended.”

In the last edition of the magazine, former President Olusegun Obasanjo had berated those running the commission, saying there were areas they were not doing well.

 

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