EFCC operatives contradict self at Senate hearing over arrest of Innoson Boss


Senate Committee on Anti-corruption and Financial Crimes has started investigations of arrest of Mr. Innocent Chukwuma, the Managing Director of Innoson Motors Nigeria Limited in Abuja.

Mr. Chukwuma was arrested by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in December, 2017 over financial transactions with Guarantee Trust Bank.

The investigation was at the instance of petition he filed at the National Assembly seeking justice . Innoson insisted that his forceful arrest by operatives of the EFCC at his Enugu residence on 19th December, was illegal.

The Committee at the hearing Thursday, wondered why the anti graft body allowed itself to be drafted into mere financial transaction between two corporate bodies to the point of effecting arrest without warrant.

A member, Senator Dino Melaye representing Kogi West after putting the EFCC’s Director of Legal Services, Mr Chile Okoroma to question on whether the arrest was carried out with a warrant or not, said “it was wrong for EFCC to have carried out such an arrest without a warrant.”

Dino added that since the substantive matter involving the three parties was already in court, the Committee had no interest of getting involved, but was worried on human rights violation perpetrated against the Innoson boss by the EFCC during the arrest.

“The Senate by its extant rules and laws of the land will never dabble into matters already in court but would never allowed any government agency or person in power use the instrumentality of office to trample on other peoples rights.

“Based on question thrown to the EFCC man here as regards whether warrant of arrest was issued before the forceful arrest of Innoson boss last year or not to which he failed to give categorical answer , shows that the anti graft agency did not follow the laid down procedure in carrying out such an arrest.

“Acts such as these are not good for a country yearning for influx of foreign investors and must be stopped”, he said.

The Chairman of the committee, Senator Chukwuka Utazi (PDP Enugu North), shared the same view with senator Melaye by advising the anti graft body to be more cautious in its operations especially on matters that were largely civil and not criminal in nature.

Earlier, the legal counsel of Innoson, Professor McCarthy Mbadiugha alleged that GTB was owing Innoson to the tune of N20billion and not Innoson owing it N600million as alleged.

The GTB lawyer, Adebowale Kamoru declined submission, saying that the matter was already in court.

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