The suspended Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Abdulrasheed Bawa, who is still in the custody of the Department of State Services (DSS) has been taken from the headquarters of the secret police to a private facility,
Sources told our correspondent on Tuesday that Bawa was moved to another facility to have total control over him after he refused to write any statements in custody.
ONIFTV had exclusively reported on Wednesday, June 21, 2023, that Bawa had refused to write statements at the secret police’s facility. It was learnt that Bawa told investigators that the DSS had no right to detain him without charges, hence his refusal to write any statements in custody.
However, on Tuesday, our correspondent learnt that Bawa had been moved from the DSS headquarters to one of its private facilities.
“They’ve taken Bawa from DSS headquarters to one of their private facilities to have total control over him after he refused to write statements requested from him,” a top security source said.
Bawa has been in detention along with Godwin Emefiele, the suspended governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria since their suspension from their respective offices by President Bola Tinubu’s administration over corruption allegations and abuse of office.
ONIFTV learnt that so far, Bawa had refused to cooperate with DSS investigators, protesting against his detention without charges.
“The detained EFCC chairman has refused to write statements; he told DSS they have no right to detain him without charges.
“He was also accused of shielding former Governor of Zamfara, Abdulaziz Yari, while helping him to hunt down his opponents,” a source had told SaharaReporters.
“So far since his detention, he has vehemently refused to cooperate with DSS investigators,” another top source had noted.
Our correspondent had exclusively reported that Emefiele named Bawa as an accomplice in the Naira redesign scam that rocked the country some months ago.
Bawa’s invitation and grilling by the DSS came days after Emefiele was arrested and flown from Lagos to Abuja to also face interrogations over alleged corruption and abuse of office.
On November 23, 2022, then-President Muhammadu Buhari alongside Emefiele unveiled new naira notes in denominations of N200, N500 and N1,000. Emefiele insisted that the old notes would cease to be legal tender from January 31, 2023.
Addressing journalists after the event, Emefiele insisted that the move was not targeted at anyone as there were speculations that the move was pushed by the cabal in the Presidency and targeted at preventing Bola Tinubu, then-presidential candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress from winning the February 25, 2023 election.
The policy caused Nigerians untold hardship due to the scarcity of naira notes with the CBN unable to meet the demand for new notes. The policy led to a cash crisis and long queues at banks and ATMs.
“Emefiele who is currently cooling his feet in the cell of the DSS is the reason why the EFCC chairman has been detained overnight. Emefiele who is cooperating with the DSS claimed that Bawa was the one who raised a memo to former President Muhammadu Buhari, asking that the Naira should be redesigned to stem money laundering during the 2023 election,” a top source had revealed.
“Bawa confronted him that he (Emefiele) and the former Attorney-General of the Federation, (Abubakar) Malami were the ones that came to him to raise the memo because they suspected Tinubu had warehouses stuffed with naira notes,” the source had added.
In February and March, Nigerians were subjected to extreme difficulty with the Naira redesign and cashless policy due to the scarcity of the new Naira notes.
To make matters worse, Emefiele refused to heed a Supreme Court ruling which made the old notes legal tender till December 31, before former President Buhari distanced himself from the disobedience to the court order.