Saraki should be prosecuted but… – Atiku

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Former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar has expressed reservations about the planned prosecution of former Senate President Bukola Saraki by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in 2019 stated in a statement he shared on his social media pages that due process must be followed in the exercise.

EFCC is presently investigating Saraki’s two terms as Kwara Governor and tenure as Senate President between 2015 and 2019.

The EFCC recently wrote a letter to the Clerk of the Senate, demanding the receipts, cash books and documents of the contracts of the Office of the President of the 8th Senate led by Bukola Saraki.

Atiku, who described Saraki as one of the most investigated politicians in Nigeria, said due process must be followed in his prosecution by the anti-graft body in order for it not to become persecution.

The statement read:

I stand against corruption in government, which was why my office personally facilitated the take-off of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission with a loan, after that most important anti-corruption institution was founded by then President Olusegun Obasanjo.

However, there is a huge difference between prosecution and persecution. I am all for prosecuting the corrupt, but I believe it is wrong to use the instruments of state to persecute political opponents.

Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, the immediate past Senate President, is one of the most investigated politicians in Nigeria. He has been investigated and prosecuted all the way to the Supreme Court and has prevailed against his accusers. It was expected that that should have been the end of the matter.

However, the revival of previously investigated cases, and the fact that Dr. Saraki was politically opposed to the administration of General Muhammadu Buhari seems to give strong grounds for objective bystanders to conclude that his current travails have gone beyond prosecution and are now tending towards prosecution.

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The laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria are made for all and we fought for democracy so that the powers of the state would not be used to suborn tyranny and oppression.

In the instance, I urge Dr. Bukola Saraki to stand firm and take solace in the fact Nigerians still hold the constitution higher than any other authority.

I urge all Nigerians, and especially those tasked with upholding the constitution and the laws of the land, to note that silence in the face of oppression is akin to acquiescence. I, Atiku Abubakar, will always stand up for the constitution and Nigeria.

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