Special Presidential Investigation Panel on the Recovery of Public Property, SPIP, has said that a newspaper “twisted” quotes by its Chairman, Okoi Obono-Obla.
The panel said those behind the report were attempting to rubbish him in the war against corruption by President Muhammadu Buhari.
Obono-Obla was alleged to have stated that the anti-corruption agencies, particularly the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, had been compromised.
He was also reported to have questioned why the name of Liyel Imoke, a former Governor of Cross River State, was not in a list of cases of past government officials to be prosecuted provided by the EFCC.
But the panel clarified that the presidential aide was completely quoted him out of context.
In a statement by Head of Media and Communication, Sebastine Eko, the panel noted that the chairman would not attack EFCC and ICPC as they work in collaboration in the fight against corruption.
It reads: “The Special Presidential Investigation Panel for the Recovery of Public Property is established to assist government in the recovery of public property illegally acquired from proceeds of corruption amongst others. This it can only achieve by collaboration with other sister anti-corruption agencies, the media, CSOs and the general public.
‘‘To set the records straight, the Chairman, SPIP, Chief Okoi Obono-Obla did not hold a strategy meeting with the Say No Campaign, a civil society organisation as reported by the Leadership Newspaper. Rather, the conveners of the Say No Campaign lead by Mr. Ezenwa Nwagwu and Jaiye Gaskiya paid him a courtesy visit.
“The conveners of the Say No campaign stated categorically that the visit of the group was to ‘seek partnership with the Prosecution’s Office’ because of their (the group’s) passion to fight corruption.
“They also pointed out that ‘the group has been worried about prosecutions in Nigeria especially that of anti-corruption agencies’ because sometimes there were compromising issues that were involved.’
“This statement was made by the convener of the Say No Campaign, Mr. Ezenwa Nwagwu, and not Okoi Obono-Obla as wrongly reported.”