Abdulrasheed Bawa, the suspended Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has been transferred from the Department of State Services (DSS) headquarters to a private facility after he refused to provide statements while in custody. This move was intended to exert greater control over him. Bawa had earlier expressed his objection to being detained without charges, hence his refusal to cooperate with the DSS. Additionally, Bawa and Godwin Emefiele, the suspended governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, have been detained by President Bola Tinubu’s administration over allegations of corruption and abuse of office.
Emefiele implicated Bawa in the Naira redesign scandal, which recently plagued the country. The DSS subsequently summoned Bawa for questioning following Emefiele’s arrest. The Naira redesign policy, announced by Emefiele and President Muhammadu Buhari in November 2022, led to severe difficulties for Nigerians due to the scarcity of new currency notes and the cashless policy implementation. Emefiele claimed that Bawa had initiated a memo to President Buhari, proposing the Naira redesign as a measure to counter money laundering during the 2023 elections. Bawa, however, confronted Emefiele, alleging that Emefiele and the former Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, had approached him with suspicions that Bola Tinubu possessed large amounts of Naira notes stored in warehouses.
Despite a Supreme Court ruling that allowed the old notes to remain legal tender until December 31, Emefiele disregarded this decision, causing further distress to Nigerians. Former President Buhari distanced himself from the non-compliance with the court order.