Ministerial Nominee, Lateef Fagbemi, Advocates Merger of EFCC and ICPC
A ministerial nominee, Chief Lateef Fagbemi has advocated a merger of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC).
The senior advocate said the investigation and prosecution of corruption cases should not be handled by a single agency.
Fagbemi made the call on Wednesday, while undergoing screening before the senators for a ministerial job.
When merged Fagbemi said that, one of the existing anti-graft agencies would handle investigations, while the other would prosecute.
He explained that it was not desirable to task one agency with the investigation and prosecution of offenders.
Fagbemi, who is being tipped as the next justice minister, also said it was wrong for EFCC to invite a serving state governor, immediately he leaves office for investigations over alleged corruption charges
According to him, investigation of corruption cases take time, and Nigerians need to understand and be patient for a thorough investigations.
“Truth be told, we fight corruption but at the same time, the way it is being fought in Nigeria leaves much to be desired,” Fagbemi said.
“If I have my way, I’ll advise the president to unbundle, first of all, bring ICPC and EFCC together, unbundle them.
“Investigation should not be handled by the same body that must be the supervisory authority within the same system.
“Prosecution is another body. It doesn’t augur well to ask the same authority to (carry out) investigation and prosecution. That is why we have problems.”
He cited the case of a cyber-crime convict, Hushpupi, whom he said was tracked for years by security operatives without being invited until they gathered adequate evidence to convict him.