HUMAN Rights lawyer, Mr Femi Falana on Wednesday told the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) that the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) has recovered N750 billion loots in two years and tasked the Congress to monitor the usage of the money by the Federal Government.
Falana, who was one of the speakers at the ongoing 40th-anniversary celebration of the NLC in Abuja challenged the NLC to find out the plan of the government for the recovered loots.
He said: “The EFCC has recovered N750 billion in the last two years. NLC must find out what we are going to do with the money,” Falana said.
The Senior Advocate of Nigeria lamented that Nigeria is still full of corruption, noting that what President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration is doing is just a tip of the iceberg.
He challenges the NLC to demand what the government intends to do with the N750 billion recovered, adding that the labour movement must rise in defence of the country by demanding accountability and judicious use of the recovered looted funds.
He said Nigeria cannot be complaining of being broke, considering the huge public resources in private hands; regretting that despite this, many citizens are dying of starvation.
According to him, “the NLC has a role to play to protect the interest of the Nigerian people. That is why whenever there is a problem in the country, people will be asking where is NLC. If you say you are fighting corruption, we have nothing to lose but to join them to expose themselves.
“The EFCC in the last two and half years recovered N750 billion, NLC must find out what will they do with the money. I told government publicly that what they are doing by saying they are fighting corruption is a tip of the iceberg, the real corruption is not being fought.
- Court dismisses Falana’s suit against National Assembly
- Groups tackle Falana, others over call for release of El- Zakky Zakky
“I wrote a letter to the Minister of Finance and I itemised how this country can recover about 200 billion dollars and therefore they don’t need to go anywhere to borrow money but what the Minister did was to write me back to acknowledge receiving the letter and that, it is receiving attention. And up till now, that letter is receiving attention.
“In 2006, the then CBN governor, Prof Chukwuma Charles Soludo gave 7 billion dollars to 14 banks and those banks have not paid back the money. Also in 2008 the CBN governor, Malam Sanusi Lamido gave to six banks N600 billion and up till now, the money has not been returned. You cannot say we are broke, pay back this money.
“You also remember the N100m that was released for the revive of the textile industry, but still these textile companies are still moribund. Where is the money? Also in the last 10 years, over N400 billion was released for agriculture, but yet we are hungry”.
He pointed out that Nigeria does not need to borrow from China or from any other source as it has enough to meet up with its financial obligation.
“I am ready to give NLC documents so that when negotiating for Minimum Wage, they would be armed with facts and figures,” he said.
Proffering solutions to the problems, Falana advised NLC to put in place mechanism to revive the labour party to bring succour to the Nigerian people.
According to him, the third force suggested by former President Obasanjo should be a party of the working class that would protect the interest of Nigerians.
He said: “The solution is for us to reorganise the labour party so that it will not be a dumping ground for the disgruntled elements of the ruling class.
“This is because General Obasanjo said neither APC or the PDP has a solution to the country’s problems, therefore there is a need for a third force, that third force must not be by the disgruntled people but of the Nigerian working people”.
On the issue of herdsmen, Falana said the only way out of the crisis is for the ranches to be located across the country.
He pointed out that the killings would end when those who killed others are made to face justice for what they have done.
He said: “This is a state matter and has nothing to do with the federal, Benue government must go ahead and charge those who have been arrested to court to be prosecuted.”