The attention of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has drawn to a story captioned, Controversy Trails EFCC Chairman’s Visit to Lagos CJ, which appeared in Thisday Newspaper of Tuesday April 19, 2022.
The report alleged that the visit by the EFCC Chairman to Justice Kazeem Alogba, Chief Judge of Lagos State, after a court session where he was prosecution witness is now a subject of controversy.
Though the source of controversy is not stated by the writer, the Commission is however constrained to state the fact of the visit to forestall needless innuendos and misrepresentation.
What the writer termed as controversial was a scheduled courtesy visit to the Chief Judge. There was nothing secret or clandestine about the visit which was undertaken by Bawa in his capacity as Executive Chairman, EFCC; and not as a prosecution witness in an ongoing criminal trial before a judge of the Lagos High Court.
As the writer alluded to, it is not strange for heads of anti-corruption agencies to visit heads of judiciary to solicit for synergy. Lagos State Judiciary, in particular, is critical to EFCC as the bulk of the Commission’s cases are domiciled in the jurisdiction. Thus, the visit by the EFCC Chairman to the chief Judge of the state was a routine courtesy call which should not be exploited by mischief makers to fan the embers of disaffection between the Commission and members of the Bench.
The Commission also frowns at the obvious design to draw a non-existent nexus between the visit and the ongoing case where Bawa has been in the witness box for over 5 years.