Go answer EFCC, ex-presidential aide, Akande, tells Yahaya Bello, amid corruption allegations

Former Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello, with Laolu Akande (inset). FILE PHOTOS

• Commends Fagbemi’s silent moves

By Emmanuel Babafemi

In a stirring plea for accountability, former Presidential aide, Laolu Akande, has urged former Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello to surrender himself to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), amid allegations.

Speaking candidly on Thursday during an appearance on Channels TV’s Sunrise Daily, Akande stressed the imperative of upholding the rule of law and ethical standards within Nigeria’s legal framework.

“The law is a cornerstone of societal progress,” Akande declared, saying, “The law is meant to help society deliver good. The EFCC has invited (former Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello) to come and answer so that we know how to take this forward.”

Restating his advocacy against corrosive corruption, Akande emphasised the necessity for Bello to confront the charges against him directly.

“Former Governor Yahaya Bello must not circumvent the legal process,” Akande insisted, adding, “His cooperation with the EFCC is essential for accountability and the redemption of his reputation.

“To have a former governor try to break the system, bring up all issues. We don’t want to get involved in technicalities (of law). We must encourage former Governor Yahaya Bello to redeem himself. There is still time to redeem himself by surrendering himself to the EFCC,” Akande stated.

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Recall that the anti-graft agency declared the former Governor wanted after evading arrest.

Drawing attention to past instances, Akande noted that Bello’s predicament is not unprecedented, as previous governors have faced similar scrutiny.

He recalled the case of former Governor Ayo Fayose who surrendered to the EFCC willingly after his term of office.

“We’ve had people like Fayose, in his case, Fayose went there, he didn’t wait for them to invite him. There are over twenty former governors that have been tried by the EFCC and it is a bailable offence. I think former Governor Bello has just messed himself up by turning the whole thing into a big deal,” Akande maintained.

As a result, the seasoned journalist urged the former governor to cooperate with authorities and fulfil an obligation to the due process.

Encouraging Bello to take ownership of his actions, Akande underscored the opportunity for redemption through cooperation with the EFCC’s investigations.

On the question of state police, Akande said while there is a consensus now on the issue, the question of how governors won’t be abusing state police should be addressed.

In addressing broader governance concerns, particularly regarding the potential misuse of state police powers, Akande advocated for robust oversight mechanisms to prevent misuse.

He underscored the importance of addressing governance challenges to ensure the effective and responsible use of state police forces.

Akande also emphasised the pivotal role of ethical governance in ensuring the responsible use of state resources.

Acknowledging the efforts of the Attorney-General of the Federation, Lateef Fagbemi (SAN), Akande lauded his commitment to justice reforms.

“We must commend the Attorney-General who seems to be a silent person trying to get things done and hope that this will lead to something that can transform the judiciary and the entire criminal justice system,” Akande remarked, expressing hope for tangible progress in Nigeria’s criminal justice system.