Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom has lauded the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission for the ongoing investigation and subsequent arrests of Speaker and other members of the state House of Assembly for allegedly misappropriating N750 million meant for purchase of official cars.
The governor is his statement yesterday said his administration would not condone any act of criminality or defend anyone who had a hand in fraud
The Speaker of the State House of Assembly Terkinbi Ikange, alongside his deputy, Minority leader, Majority leader and deputy and 10 other members were arrested and detained on Monday in Abuja by the EFCC but were released on Wednesday evening on bail—another seven members had been summoned by Commission to appear for questioning on Friday first of April.
Governor Ortom while speaking with the State House Correspondents after a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the presidential Villa, said: “Yes it is a good thing, it is part of the process. They are under investigation by the EFCC. From day one I brought up a slogan that ‘if you chop money, money will chop you. “We have to be careful and I have sent signals to all that nobody is above the law. If you do wrong, you will go your own way. As far as I’m concerned, they are under investigation. Let’s see the outcome we would have. As far as I’m concerned, my government will not shield anybody who is corrupt and who is found wanting. From myself as governor and every other lieutenant, we are opened to scrutiny.”
The governor said he is conducting his own private independent prosecution of corrupt individuals and that some indicted persons had agreed to N355 million to the state government.
“The justice Kpojume commission came out with a report that N107 billion should be retrieved from 52 persons including the former governor and I am leaving no stones un-turned to ensure that we recover this money because we need it for the development of Benue state. “Already someone who was indicted has already offered to refund N355 million which we gave the approval in council on Wednesday. With that we are not interested in prosecution. The exco exonerated him, once he pays in the money, he has his clean bill.”