EFCC-Chairman-Ibrahim-Lamorde1The Federal Ministry of Justice has denied media speculations that it ordered the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate its chairman, Ibrahim Lamorde.

Session of the news media was awash on Tuesday with reports claiming that the Federal Ministry of Justice had ordered the EFCC to commence investigation into the allegation that Mr. Lamorde diverted about N1 trillion proceeds of corruption recovered by the anti-graft agency.

The reports said the request was sequel to a petition sent by one George Uboh to the Solicitor-General and Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Justice, Abdullahi Yola.

However, the Ministry of Justice on Tuesday refuted the reports quoting Nigeria’s solicitor-general as having given the probe order. The ministry, in a statement issued through its spokesperson, Charles Nwodo, said the story was “erroneous and misleading”.

Although, the ministry’s spokesperson acknowledged receiving a petition against Mr. Lamorde and other top officials of the EFCC, he however, said what the Ministry did after receiving the petition “as required by the rules of public service and constitutional right to fair hearing” was to pass the petition to Mr. Lamorde for response.

According to him, the ministry was still awaiting the response of the EFCC chairman.

Mr. Uboh had written to the justice ministry threatening legal action should it fail to “sanction” the leadership of the EFCC.

The ministry responded to Mr. Uboh’s letter through its Director, Public Prosecutions, Muhammad Diri, on behalf of the Permanent Secretary. In the said letter, Mr. Diri said he was directed to inform Mr. Uboh that his petition “has been sent to the EFCC for their response to the allegation contained therein.”

By Olisemeka Obeche

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