The Human Rights Law Service (HURILAWS) applauds the call by the President
of the Nigerian Bar Association, A.B. Mahmoud SAN for a debate on the
efficacy of the war against corruption in Nigeria. Where corruption is
endemic like in Nigeria strong institutions are critical to achieve
success. It is in this context that the debate on the propriety of the
EFCC investigating and prosecuting financial crimes at the same time is
We support the position of the President of the Nigerian Bar Association.
HURILAWS position is supported by international best practice and the need
to build the capacity of the EFCC to deliver on its core mandate which is
investigation of financial crimes. The international best practice is that
one agency investigates, another prosecutes and the court adjudicates. The
EFCC as currently composed is overworked and will not efficiently deliver
on investigation and prosecution.
Whilst we have no objection with the EFCC investigating or the courts
adjudicating, we believe the powers to prosecute should be vested in an
independent highly resourced prosecuting agency. We appreciate the
enormous work done by the EFCC since its establishment in 2003. 13 years
on the Federal Government needs to rejig the EFCC and other crime fighting
institutions to perform optimally. We support plan by the Attorney General
of the Federation to establish a National Prosecuting Agency.
Olisa Agbakoba SAN Collins Okeke
Senior Counsel Legal/Programme Officer
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