Oyo State government has described the arrest of the State accountant General as a continuous harassment of its officials by the operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, stating that the act is totally unconstitutional.
The state government made this known in a statement by the Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Wasiu Olatunbosun while reacting to the recent arrest, detention and subsequent release of the state’s Accountant General.
The state government accused the anti-graft agency of mounting pressure on its officials to provide documents regarding disbursements and expenditure of the Consolidated Revenue Fund, Contingencies Fund and Security Vote lawfully approved and passed into Appropriation Law of the state by the House of Assembly.
According to the statement, “The Oyo State Government is using this medium to update the good people of Oyo State regarding the arrest, questioning and detention of the Oyo State Accountant General on Friday, February 25, 2022, and subsequent release on Monday, February 28, 2022.
“The continued harassment and intimidation of the Accountant General and other officials of the state government by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is totally unconstitutional and unacceptable and is being contested in a court of competent jurisdiction.
“The EFCC and its officials have, since last year been mounting pressure on Oyo State and its officials to provide documents regarding disbursements and expenditure of the Consolidated Revenue Fund, Contingencies Fund and Security Vote lawfully approved and passed into Appropriation Law of Oyo State by the Oyo State House of Assembly.
“This is despite the fact that the Supreme Court of Nigeria has decided in a long line of cases that the EFCC lacks the powers to prosecute issues that are not corruption cases.
“We would like to put it on record that by virtue of Section 128 (1) and (2) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, unless and until the Oyo State House of Assembly reports or exposes any corruption, inefficiency or waste in the execution or administration of laws within its legislative competence and in the disbursement or administration of funds appropriated by it to the Executive Governor of Oyo State and Commissioner for Finance, Section 6 (h) of the EFCC Establishment Act 2004 (as amended) cannot be triggered.