The Conference of Nigeria Political Parties (CNPP) and some of its allies have demanded that anti corruption agencies revisit the revelations made by the House of Representatives its investigation into the power sector and to prosecute anyone found culpable in corruption.
Secretary General of the CNPP, Chief Willy Ezugwu told journalists in Abuja that the group is concerned that the outcome of the power probe would be swept under the carpet even when some of those named in the probe have lost the constitutional immunity that once protected them.
Chief Ezugwu said “It is on this basis that we urge that the issue of immunity granted to state governors by the constitution should be revisited with a view to removing it since it is now proven to be a stumbling block to effectively investigating and prosecuting persons suspected of being connected with corruption.
“In the past, some key players in the power sector, where over $16 billion remain unaccounted, were never properly investigated. We are all witnesses to the revelations made at the power sector probe conducted by the House of Representatives and how it exposed the roles played by several people among then the former Cross River state governor, Senator Liyel Imoke. Former President Olusegun Obasanjo who was the emperor at that time has lost his immunity for some years now and nothing has happened to him despite the petitions before anti graft agencies. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had its hands tied then because Imoke was a governor during the probe.
“When he eventually briefly lost his immunity, the EFCC said the matter was before the House of Representatives and would not interfere at that point. Another opportunity has now come for Nigeria to get to the root of corruption in the power sector as a key player is again without immunity thereby providing an opportunity that must not be lost in the quest to shed light on what happened to the money spent in the sector.
“We have also seen that several former governors who have lost their immunity now walk the country free without hindrance because Nigeria’s anti graft agencies are still suffering from some form of hangover because of the immunity these people once had. It is worrisome that this immunity has now been transferred to people who ordinarily have no such protection under the constitution as we see from the corruption in the oil sector where the Minister of petroleum and other accounting officer in the oil industry have refused to step aside to be investigated.” Chief Ezugwu said.
He said “As the nation awaits the outcome of the fuel subsidy probe, we believe the proper starting place for the Federal Government is the power sector as Nigerians still live in darkness more than light despite the $16 billion disbursed to that sector.”
The CNPP Secretary General said the conference and its allies will submit a petition to EFCC on Monday 13, February.