Indications have emerged that the Department of State Services (DSS) is investigating the suspended Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Abdulrasheed Bawa, for alleged misappropriation of proceeds of assets seized by the anti-graft agency from suspects, among other issues.
Recall that after President Bola Ahmed Tinubu suspended the EFCC boss, Bawa had reported at the DSS headquarters for questioning.
Bawa was arrested and detained in 2019 by the anti-graft agency for allegedly selling at least 244 trucks worth between N20m and N30m each to his cronies at the cost of N100,000 per unit, hence depriving the country of about N4.8bn in potential loot recovery.
Sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity, disclosed to The PUNCH that the forfeiture proceedings of most of the trucks were yet to be concluded when Bawa allegedly disposed of them.
The source said, “In 2019, Bawa was arrested and questioned over the sale of about 244 trucks that were seized by our Port Harcourt zonal office, where he worked then as zonal head. That case is one of the major reasons why he was suspended and is being investigated.
“He sold the trucks worth between N20m and N30m each to his proxies at N100,000 per unit, depriving the country of about N4.8bn in potential loot recovery.
“This prompted the former EFCC Secretary, Ola Olukoyede, to confront the EFCC boss in 2019, as he was said to have received complaints that Bawa was tampering with assets undergoing forfeiture proceedings.
“But when Bawa was queried about what happened to the trucks, he claimed that he was acting on the instructions of the former Chairman, Magu, but he never wrote that in his statement.”
Another source revealed that the allegation by former governor of Zamfara State, Bello Matawalle, of a demand for $2 million bribe by Bawa was one of the reasons for the ongoing investigation against him.
Speaking to the aforementioned platform, the source also noted that the suspended EFCC chairman allegedly collaborated with the suspended CBN governor, Emefiele, to carry out fraudulent deals with Bureau De Change operators.
The source said, “You’re very much aware that Matawale also accused the chairman of demanding a $2m bribe from him. That’s also part of the allegations levelled against him that led to his suspension.
“Also, there’s an allegation that Bawa collaborated with the suspended CBN governor, Emefiele, in some fraudulent dealings with Bureau De Change operators.”
Recall that Matawalle had in May accused Bawa of demanding a $2m bribe from him.
Matawale made the allegation during an interview with BBC Hausa amid ongoing rift between the then governor and the anti-graft agency.