The Federal Government has given the National Prosecution Coordination Committee, NPCC, the nod to take over the trial of high profile public officers, especially former governors, alleged to have looted their state treasuries Already, Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami, SAN, has directed various agencies with prosecutorial powers in the country to compile lists of such high profile cases.
Malami, who met with heads of the anti-graft agencies at the Federal Ministry of Justice headquarters in Abuja, Monday, briefed them on the exigency and existence of the committee.
He said the purpose of the meeting was to fashion out a working synergy between NPCC and the agencies, which include the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission, ICPC.
Other agencies equally directed to forward a comprehensive list of all the pending high-profile case files with them to NPCC include the Nigerian Police Force, Department of State Services, as well as the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS.
The AGF, in a statement by his media aide, Mr. Salihu Isah, said he had the prerogative to determine cases that should be tagged ‘high profile’, based on “overriding public interest elements.”
He further disclosed that members of the committee were mainly his aides as well as eight external members selected on the basis of experience and expertise.
However, the AGF said he decided to exempt heads of the prosecuting agencies from NPCC “due to their busy schedules.”
He said there was need for all the agencies with prosecutorial and investigative powers, to in line with the mandate of President Muhammadu Buhari in the anti-graft war, cooporate with the committee.
Malami said the need for synergy between the agencies and NPCC was to obviate factors that stalled the prosecution of the cases in the first instance.
Some of the high profile trials involving former governors which the NPCC will likely re-open soon include cases against the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, who was two-term governor of Kwara State; Godswil Akpabio (Akwa Ibom); Ali-Modu Sheriff (Borno), Orji Uzor Kalu (Abia); Chimaroke Nnamani (Enugu); Saminu Turaki (Jigawa); Sule Lamido (Jigawa); Joshua Dariye (Plateau); Ahmed Yerima (Zamfara); Gabriel Suswam (Benue); Martin Elechi (Ebonyi); Danjuma Goje (Gombe) and Murtala Nyako (Adamawa). Others include cases against Ikedi Ohakim (Imo); Obong Victor Attah (Akwa Ibom); Achike Udenwa (Imo); Abdullahi Adamu (Nasarawa); Gbenga Daniel (Ogun); Jolly Nyame (Taraba); Boni Haruna (Adamawa); George Akume (Benue); Rashidi Ladoja (Oyo); Attahiru Bafarawa (Sokoto), Usman Dakingari (Kebbi); Adamu Mu’azu (Bauchi); Peter Odili (Rivers), and Lucky Igbindedion (Edo).