Yetunde Oladejo, Osogbo
A former deputy governor of Osun State, Senator Iyiola Omisore, has cautioned the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) to stop using the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) to witch-hunt the opposition.
Reacting to newspapers and online reports that he has been declared wanted by EFCC, the former senator, in a press statement signed by him and made available to newsmen in Osogbo, stated that the action of EFCC was as an attempt to tarnish his image.
According to Omisore, the statement, if indeed was issued by the EFCC, “is the height of mischief and a deliberate attempt to assassinate my character”.
He noted that the EFCC was now been playing out the script of persecuting and harassing perceived opposition groups in the country.
Omisore statement reads in part: “To be sure, there is no basis for the EFCC so-called statement. Only on Tuesday, May 24, we appeared in court with the EFCC asking for the permission of the court for an extension of time in the preliminary objection to a suit filed against me.
“The Managing Director of Firmex Gill which the EFCC joined in their case indemnified me from the company’s contracts and any such obligations. In other words, there is nothing relating to me in the company’s contract deal with the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA). The company has even sued the ONSA for its inability to pay the balance of the contract so awarded to it.
“Therefore, I am not aware of any issue relating to a contract sum of N700 million. There was no issue of N700 million anywhere. The relationship between the company and ONSA is civil and contractual, which has nothing to do with me. Besides, so long as their business transactions are legitimate and since I am not directly managing the company, how am I to know who and who they do business with?
“How can you declare someone you were in court with at 9. 00a.m today (Tuesday) wanted the same day, a few hours afterwards?
“The EFCC should not be seen to be playing the role of political victimization of innocent individuals, coercion and blackmail. Sadly, that is simply what this organisation has been doing.
“Blackmail, I strongly believe, won’t help EFCC. If the organisation and its leadership think they have any case against me, they should come to court with their facts. This act of blackmail and deliberate tarnishing the image of perceived political enemies won’t help the image of the EFCC and it won’t get it result.
“I am appealing to all human rights and civil society organizations to caution EFCC from damaging my reputation further.”
Omisore then challenged the anti-graft agency to bring their facts to the court if it has any and not resort to blackmail, intimidation and victimization.