By EMMANUEL UDOM
When Ibrahim Lamorde, chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission told the world late last year that the anti-corruption agency could only bark, not bite in some high profile cases, I honestly thought he was a joker.
But, with the way the EFCC, Babalakin case is going, I am tempted to think that Lamorde is dead serious about the helplessness of the agency to deal with high profile cases.
Emeka Ugwuonye, in his write-up posted by Elomah Perspective on For a Corruption Free Nigeria has this to say and I will encourage you to read on.
In the past 48 hours, Nigerians have been treated to an interesting comedy in the hands of their flagship law enforcement agency, the EFCC.
Many are laughing and rolling over. Good a thing it happened close to the weekend. In a country without real means of entertainment due to power blackouts and the perennial fear of violence, armed robbery, kidnapping and what have you, the EFCC's entertainment value as the butt of all jokes is definitely a welcome development.
As unfortunate and, ironically, funny as it may sound, the following will thrill you to no end. It starts with the bizarre declaration that Dr. Wale Babalakin, SAN was a wanted fugitive from justice, followed by the declaration that he had gone underground (like a gorilla fighter or Boko Haram operatives).
Then the astonishment that greets one upon hearing the EFCC request to be contacted at its non-existent Gombe office with information leading to the arrest of Babalakin.
The whole drama reaches a frenzy when one hears that when Babalakin appeared in court less than 24 hours after and requested to be granted bail on self-recognizance, the EFCC lawyer jumped to his feet and screamed:
"We have no objections, my Lord". And so it happened that the same Babalakin was granted bail on his own self-recognition in a proceeding that lasted no more than 30 minutes.
Act One: Scene One: "The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC has declared the Chairman of Bi-Courtney Highway Services Limited, Wale Babalakin wanted in connection with a case of Criminal Conspiracy and Money Laundering to the tune of N4.7billion.
The businessman who was supposed to report to the Commission today preparatory to his arraignment on a 27 count criminal charge before Justice Adeniyi Onigbanjo of the Lagos High Court tomorrow, January 17, 2013 failed to do so, and has gone underground. Babalakin is dark-complexioned and speaks English and Yoruba fluently.
Anybody having useful information as to his whereabouts should contact the Commission in its Enugu, Kano, Lagos, Gombe, Port Harcourt and Abuja offices or through these numbers: 09-4604620, 070-26350721,070-26350722,070-26350723,0
Act One; Scene Two: "This is another mark that the EFCC officers are dumb. If they plan to arraign Babalakin tomorrow and he failed to show up today, why make all these noises. It is obvious what has happened. Babalakin does not want the EFCC to take him to court. He will rather appear in court by himself.
That will help his bail application because he could show that he came to court on his own. On the other hand, the EFCC wants to undermine his bail application by suggesting that he did not come to court on his own - that they brought him. It is so obvious what the dynamics are. But the EFCC leaders want to waste the people's time and raise false alarms."
What happened next?: Continue reading on:@ http://links.causes.com/s/clImEe?r=baxm0