The Economic and Financial Crime Commission on Monday described the allegations that its operatives raided the Abuja home of Atiku Abubakar’s sons, as nothing but lies.
The EFCC said in a series of tweets that detectives only searched the house where the son of a former Governor of Abia State, Senator Theodore Orji, resides.
Atiku’s two children, Mustapha and Aliyu, live in the same compound as Orji’s son
But the camp of the Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Abubakar Atiku, on Monday described the raid by the operatives of the EFCC on his sons’ apartment in a building at Maitama, Abuja as an act of intimidation against him.
Atiku who spoke through the Head, the Atiku Media Office, Mr. Paul Ibe, in an interview with one of our correspondents, said EFCC conducted the search on the apartment where Aliyu and Mustapha live on Saturday.
Ibe added that they found nothing incriminating on Atiku’s sons.
According to him, the search was an act of intimidation on Atiku as, according to him, officials of the Muhammadu Buhari government perceived the PDP presidential candidate as their ‘tormentor-in-chief.’
Ibe said, “After having arrested the son of Theodore Orji, they asked him to lead them to the residence of Atiku’s children. He said he did not know them. The EFCC searched the house.
According to the EFCC, Orji’s son, Ogbonna, and his friend, Kelvin Ilonah, were arrested as part of investigations into the ex governor, who is alleged to have embezzled billions of naira during his eight-year tenure as governor.
The EFCC said, “This is nothing but another tales by moonlight. It is in the news that we have been investigating the former Abia State governor, Senator Theodore Orji, over alleged N27bn laundering. In the course of investigation, we discovered that he laundered part of the money through his sons.
“We have been on the trail of some of the purchases made by his sons, including the cars the boys allegedly bought.
“Last Friday, we traced one of the cars to a night club in Abuja. In order not to cause panic, we waited until the business of the club was over and when the owner of the suspected car came to take off, we arrested him and his friend who has a similar brand of car. That was about 5am on Saturday, December 8, 2018.
“The two boys we arrested were Ogbonna Orji, 32, and Kelvin Ilonah. While Orji’s car, a Range Rover is valued at about N100m, Ilonah’s car, also a Range Rover, is valued at about N35m.
“In the course of further interrogation, the two boys led us to their apartment, three flats, and documents retrieved from the apartment showed it was rented for N13m each per annum.
“Another brand new Prado, a 2017 model, was recovered from the boys in the compound. The two boys in question gave useful information to the commission which is helping in further investigation.”
The PDP National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan, in a statement described the raid as unleashing of violence on Atiku’s sons by what he called the Buhari Presidency-controlled EFCC.
He added that the raid was vicious, outrageous, dirty and reprehensible.
PDP spreading fake news, says Presidency
Meanwhile, the Presidency has dismissed as untrue the report that President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration ordered a raid on the home of the sons of Atiku.
It also described as “fake news”, another report that the bank accounts of his running mate, Peter Obi, and those of his family members were frozen.
In a statement by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Shehu, the Presidency urged Nigerians to ignore the PDP, which it claimed was now known for spreading fake news.
The Presidency stated,
“The story about the raid ‘ordered by Buhari-led government ‘on the home of PDP Presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar’s sons and the fairy tale on the alleged blockage of the bank accounts of the running mate, Peter Obi and his family are both untrue, and should be dismissed as just another manifestation of the PDP’s growing expertise in fake news.
“Nigerians must be becoming wary by now, of a political party with absolutely nothing to offer in the coming elections and has instead, transformed into a knight in shining armour, slaying the truth.
“In this so-called transformation, the PDP has changed into nothing but to a ceaselessly flowing stream of fake news.
“It is impossible to find in Nigeria today, anyone propagating fake news more than the PDP.
“Our advice to Nigerians is: ignore them.”