Former governors James Ibori and Lucky Igbinedion of Delta and Edo states respectively were at the Abuja head office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the second visit since last week.
According to Elendureports.com sources, the two governors have been given conditions by the EFCC to refund money in cash and assets worth about N60 million. But we could not get details of how much each of the governors is to refund. Sources at EFCC told this reporter that Commission gave assurances that the governors would be allowed to go home as free men if they agree to refund the said amount.
The two governors were said to have been told categorically that failure to accept the EFCC condition would mean outright detention and prosecution. Top officers of EFCC presented some documents containing the amount they looted from their states treasuries and how the acts were committed. The source further said that the governors who were quite sober while they were at EFCC are most likely to accept the conditions as they have amassed wealth far more than what they are being asked to give back to the state.
Elendureports.com gathered that James Ibori was advised by a friend to watch his spending on the elections given that he was soon to leave office. According to this friend, Ibori boasted that his expenditure on the election was nothing compared to his networth and said: “At least I will be with the new government for at least two months. That’s enough time for me to recoup my investments.”
Our EFCC sources also said that asking the governors to pay money for freedom means that the government may have decided not to go ahead with the expected clamp down of the former governors who actually contributed to the success of President Musa Yar’Adua during the 2007 elections. James Ibori was among the former governor who accompanied Peter Odili, former governor of River state to pay solidarity visit to the President few days after he was announced as the winner of the presidential election. The governors had asked the then president-elect not to forget those who contributed to his victory when he assumes office as the president of the country.
Ibori and Igbinedion are among the governors who the EFCC said have looted the treasury of their states and threatened to deal with them when they handover office as they would have lost the immunity granted them by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Others include Boni Haruna of Adamawa, Orji Kalu of Abia, Sani Yerima of Zamfara, Jolly Nyame of Taraba, Chimaroke Nnamani of Enugu.