The Northeast zonal head of Operations of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr Michael Wetkas has said that the commission is adopting new and modern strategies in its fight against corruption in order to overcome advanced ways people engage in corrupt practices.
Addressing a press conference at the Gombe zonal office (which covers Gombe, Bauchi, Taraba and Adamawa states) on its activities for the first quarter of the year, Mr. Wetkas stated that “fighting corruption has just started, meaning that we are changing gear. Fighting corruption has been difficult and herculean but there is no going back on our part”.
The zonal head of Operations who reeled out new and trending ways of corrupt activities said the commission had secured 41 convictions from corruption related cases as at April 29 with 37 of the convictions secured between January to March 2019.
He said the commission was able to recover in cash and drafts, over N55.6million with property valued at N18, 800,000 and two cars that are yet to be valued.
According to the head of Operations who assumed office in Gombe in January 2019, people must be very careful and vigilant following the advanced ways innocent people are being defrauded adding that the quantum of complaints received by the zonal office had been on the increase in recent times.
He however noted that people have forgotten that the function of the EFCC is to investigate corruption offences but not an agency for recovery of money.
Some of the successes recorded by the EFCC zonal office within the period under review were the prosecution of eight persons for vote buying during the last general elections. According to him, eight persons, including a local government chairman and two councillors were arrested for vote buying but that as at the time of the briefing, one of the councillors had been convicted.
He said one person was tried and convicted for diverting and selling for personal use, 700 treated mosquito nets meant for pregnant women in Gombe State.
Another prevalent crime according to the zonal head is employment scam where people are being swindled for government appointments. He said government appointments are not for sale and that people must be aware of that.