The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has come under fire from Twitter users for harassing people accused of fraud.
The EFCC on Monday posted pictures on its Twitter account of 10 youths it said it had arrested in Lagos on suspicion of fraud.
The suspects are Jonathan Daniel Adebayo, Lawal Waidi Seun, Adeosun Joseph, Taiwo Gbemileke, Oseni Omotayo, Emmanuel Fakiyesi, Rasheed Ogunlana, Oladunni Segun, Sowunmi Rotimi and Efetobore Prince Wilfred.
The EFCC said the arrests were made on Saturday, January 9, 2021, when they were raided in the early hours of the morning in the Alagbado area of Lagos, as a result of confidential information leaked to the commission.
Twitter users’ response
However, the issue has drawn the attention of Twitter users who see it as inappropriate to parade suspected criminals before they are prosecuted.
Commenting on the issue, prominent Nigerian journalist, Chief Dele Momodu, advised the EFCC and other security agencies to refrain from “posting pictures of Nigerian youths on social media” unless they are prosecuted before the court to prove what they are accused of doing.
He added that doing so could damage the dignity of the victims even if they are later found not guilty.
A twitter user Adetoro Olowu responded to EFCC by defending his friend who he believes is innocent; “My friend Jonathan Daniel is not a yahoo boy , he was my course mate at Pefti Film institute and we both study Film and TV production, hes a video director now and hes a Music video producer” He said.
Another user said;“Jonathan Daniel Adedayo & Adeosun Joseph Olatunji aren’t fraudsters. Dayo is a Music Producer/Soundtrack artist/Music Video Director while Joseph is a Plumber/Drummer. You have found nothing incriminating on my friends and shouldn’t parade them as fraudsters.”
Another disgruntled twitter user said; “Imagine a plumber, a cinematographer not feeling safe in his own abode, not being able to use an advanced gadget for superb delivery of his job, in this modern era. Daniel and Joseph are brothers, and they are not what you accuse them of. Please see to it. Thank you!”
“EFCC has demonstrated again its incompetency. All they do is arrest random guys, threatened them for bribery and when they stand their ground. You put up their picture just to shame them. You do this without proper investigation and conviction.” Another Nigerian tweeted.