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EFCC Releases Former DSS Boss, Ita Ekpeyong

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has released a former Director-General of the Department of State Services, Mr Ita Ekpeyong, hours after his arrest.

EFCC officials supported by armed policemen had arrested Mr Ekpeyong on Thursday in his residence in Asokoro, Abuja.

Details about the reason for his arrest are sketchy but the arrest came after his successor Mr Lawal Daura, was fired by Acting President Yemi Osinbajo.

In November 2017, officials of the DSS believed to be acting under the directives of Daura prevented EFCC officials from arresting him.

At the time, he was reportedly wanted by the anti-graft agency for his alleged role in the arms scandal involving a former National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retired).

He served as the head of the DSS from 2010 to 2015.

Meanwhile, the Presidency has ordered proper investigation into how the huge cash said to have been released to security agencies in the country for the 2015 Presidential election was managed and three former security heads, who held strategic positions in the country, are to face questioning by EFCC to determine their involvement or otherwise in expenditure of the cash.

Among those slated for probe are the immediate past Director-General of the DSS, Lawal Daura; Ekpenyong, and former Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency, NIA, Ayo Oke.

The order to subject the former security heads to scrutiny followed two days of extensive meeting between Nigeria’s Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, and the Acting Director General of the DSS, Matthew Seiyefa, and that of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu.

The opening of investigation into the roles played by the dismissed security head followed Tuesday’s sack of Lawal Daura, who had last November blocked EFCC operatives from gaining access into the Abuja homes of Ekpenyong and Oke for search.

Daura had argued at that time that security expenditure could not be subject of any investigation by the EFCC and that doing so would expose the security agencies to ridicule.

Emboldened by that argument, Daura prevented EFCC operatives who had taken vantage positions in the premises of the two men in Asokoro from entering their homes and searching them. EFCC had broken into an apartment at Ikoyi, linked to Oke’s wife .

The Acting President, had ordered investigation into the huge cash spent after the 2015 elections.

He is also reported to have ordered Seiyefa and Magu to work together and retrieve the cash from whoever was found to have dipped their hands into the till.

As a first step towards unravelling whereabouts of the cash, EFCC operatives, yesterday, swooped on the Abuja home of Ekpenyong on 46, Mamman Nasir Street in Asokoro and searched it for over two hours.

NAN




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