25th September, 2013
Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, the pioneer chairman of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC has described Mike Okiro, former Inspector General of Police as “a perennial peddler of falsehood” “a chronic political jobber and sycophant of the first order” and “a man who clearly reeks of corruption.
Ribadu made the characterisations of the former IG and now Chairman of the Police Service Commission in a statement released by Abudlaziz Abdulaziz, his media aide in Abuja.
The statement was released in response to claims by Okiro in a widely published statement disputing aspects of Ribadu’s testimonies related to him at a London court currently conducting confiscation hearing against James Ibori, the former Governor of Delta State.
Ribadu had told the court that the former Delta State Governor helped Okiro secure his appointment as the Inspector General of Police.
The former EFCC Chief said this was why he was hounded out of the police force and leadership of the anti-corruption agency soon after Okiro was appointed the Police IG.
But in a statement he issued Okiro described the claim and other similar claims made against him in the court by Ribadu in the London court as series of lies.
While faulting Okiro claims, the pioneer chairman of EFCC who is also a retired Assistant Inspector General of Police said in the statement that the involvement of Ibori in the former IGP’s emergence as Nigeria Police boss was an open secret to everybody in government at the time.
Ribadu therefore described Okiro, as a “shameless liar,” for denying former Governor Ibori’s involvement in his appointment.
He also said a former influential governor from the North-Central Nigeria and a couple of other people helped facilitate the selection of the former IGP for the position by the former Delta State Governor.
Ribadu also denied allegation by Okiro that his focus was to use his position in EFCC as a ladder to ride on to become the Inspector General of Police. He said the claims underlines the former IGP as a perennial peddler of falsehood.
“The truth is Nuhu Ribadu’s focus then was consolidating on his modest efforts at the EFCC, especially at a time when he was working on high-profile cases, including that of Okiro’s godfather, James Ibori.
“ We therefore challenge Okiro to name those people he called Ribadu’s friends that narrated the fictitious story of Ribadu’s interest in becoming the IGP to him,” he said.
The former EFCC boss who also described former IGP as “a chronic political jobber and sycophant of the first order” said Okiro had also used the same method of desperate lobbying to secure appointments as Chief Security Officer to the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and later as Chairman of the Police Service Commission, PSC.
Ribadu also said attempts by the former IGP to rewrite history as regards to the assassination attempts on his life while he was a student at National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru, Jos was regrettable.
Okiro had also in the statement he issued yesterday said Ribadu did not report the assassination attempts to him and also refused to pick his calls when the incidents were reported.
“The highest distortion in Okiro’s statement, however, is his attempt to rewrite the well-known and widely documented assassination attempts on the former EFCC chairman, and Okiro’s hands in it all. It is ridiculous that Okiro is now desperately trying to paint himself in another colour after all the schemings he orchestrated.
“It beats our imagination that Okiro would want a Nuhu Ribadu he was fighting to destroy to report those incidences to him. It would have been a case of having a culprit to be a judge in his own case.
“At the time, the trio of Michael Aondoakaa, the former Attorney General of the Federation, Okiro and Mrs. Farida Waziri, the former EFCC chairman, had created a hell out of the world for Ribadu.
“What Ribadu and other Nigerians easily recall was an elated Okiro rushing to address the press to deny something he knew nothing about. The bullet-riddled car Ribadu drove during that unfortunate life threatening incident is still there, if Okiro or any other person would want a further proof.”
Ribadu accused the former Police Chief of not only withdrawing his security aides, but making life difficult for other top EFCC operatives who served under him when he was the Police IGP.
“He also redeployed Ibrahim Lamorde out of the EFCC to Bauchi State Police Command as Area Commander in Ningi. He did the same thing to other top EFCC operatives that Nigeria spent a fortune to train as investigators. One of them suspected to be too close to Ribadu was even locked up for months,” Ribadu said.
Ribadu said Okiro could not fight corruption when he was the Police IG because he was also utterly corrupt.
“A man who clearly reeks of corruption: is Okiro denying that he is corrupt when we all know he cannot account for the source of the wealth he used in building a shopping mall in Jabi, a hotel with casino in Lugbe and a private school, all in Abuja?
“This is not to mention his housing estates in Lagos and Port Harcourt, while he was still serving in the police. If a public servant, one tasked with the responsibility of protecting the lives of Nigerians and instilling discipline in the police, managed to amass such wealth, what gut does he have to talk of corruption?,” queried Ribadu.