President Bola Tinubu has given assurance to his predecessor, Muhammadu Buhari, that he and his close aides will be exempted from any anti-corruption efforts undertaken by the government.
This assurance was allegedly discussed during a meeting between Tinubu and Buhari in London, United Kingdom, on Monday night. The President’s commitment to his predecessor comes in the midst of ongoing efforts by the Department of State Services (DSS) to restrict further investigations into politically exposed individuals by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The DSS has already conducted raids on EFCC offices in Lagos and Abuja, seizing sensitive files, documents, and flash drives related to investigations into alleged fraudulent activities involving former governors, senators, and ministers.
Earlier, it was reported that President Bola Tinubu returned to Nigeria from Europe on Tuesday, ahead of the Eid-el-Kabir celebrations, after attending the New Global Financial Pact Summit in Paris, France. Tinubu, who was originally scheduled to return to Abuja on Saturday, made a detour to London for a brief private visit where he met with former President Buhari on Monday night.
Sources informed SaharaReporters that part of their discussion revolved around an agreement that Buhari and his close aides would be exempted from any corruption-related inquiries or actions during Tinubu’s tenure.
This information was shared by a source on Tuesday. In recent reports, it was revealed that the DSS instructed the EFCC to refrain from handling political cases for the time being. Sources also disclosed that the raids on EFCC offices in Ikoyi, Lagos, and later in Abuja had more political motives than initially portrayed.
During the raids, DSS operatives reportedly seized files and flash drives containing sensitive information pertaining to investigations of former governors, ministers, and senators.
Previously exclusively reported that the DSS conducted a raid on the EFCC headquarters in June, under the cover of darkness, which lasted until the early hours of the morning. The motive behind the raid was to prevent public knowledge of the incident.
The DSS’s actions were allegedly influenced by someone of high importance to President Bola Tinubu, as revealed by an insider. The closure of the EFCC office in Ikoyi by the DSS may also be linked to these events. Sources indicated that the DSS intended to summon investigators involved in the case of former Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle, for interrogation.
This move was perceived as intimidation, reminiscent of the actions of former Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, during Ibrahim Magu’s tenure as EFCC chairman. Matawalle is currently under investigation by the EFCC in two separate cases, one involving his private company and another involving alleged fraud committed while in office.
A source close to President Bola Tinubu informed SaharaReporters that the President was aware of the efforts being made by the former governor to prevent the anti-corruption body from probing him. This includes obtaining court orders to restrain the commission and other agencies from carrying out investigations.
It is worth noting that President Tinubu recently suspended Bawa from office indefinitely. The intentions behind Tinubu’s and the DSS’s actions regarding the detention of Bawa and the seizure of sensitive documents related to the commission’s investigations were not clear in the June 18 report.
However, sources revealed on Tuesday that the raids were politically motivated, with the seizure of files and flash drives linked to the investigation of former governors, senators, and ministers. Last month, DSS operatives stormed the EFCC’s Lagos office, denying access to officials due to a dispute over office ownership. The EFCC officers were shocked by the incident as they had been using