Nigeria: Pandora Papers - EFCC Summons Peter Obi

Peter Obi, the ex-governor of Anambra State in Southeastern Nigeria (file photo).
17 October 2021

Peter Obi has been asked to report at the agency's Abuja headquarters on October 27 to face investigators.

The former governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi, whose secret and illegal offshore activities PREMIUM TIMES reported in the ongoing Pandora Papers series, has been summoned for questioning by the EFCC, Nigeria's anti-corruption agency.

It is the first known action by any Nigerian law enforcement agency since PREMIUM TIMES started reporting influential Nigerians involved in offshore shenanigans exposed through the global Pandora Papers investigation. The presidency has directed that Nigerians exposed in the reports be investigated, those with knowledge of the directive have told this paper.

PREMIUM TIMES learnt that the EFCC communicated the invitation to Mr Obi during the week and he has been asked to report at the agency's Abuja headquarters on October 27 to face investigators.

Sources separately said the invitation is in connection with revelations in our Pandora Papers report. The report exposed how Mr Obi incorporated offshore holdings, which he did not declare to the Code of Conduct Bureau when he served as a governor and how he continued to manage his Next International UK Limited 14 months after becoming a governor. In addition, he also continued to operate a foreign account as a governor.

All these actions, which had been secret until our report, were in contravention of Nigeria's laws on code of conduct for public officers, PREMIUM TIMES reported. Mr Obi has, however, continued to claim no wrongdoing.

However, a source at the anti-graft agency said the Pandora Papers revelations only served as a lead for investigators and that "a number of issues" are now being investigated regarding Mr Obi and his offshore dealings.

Exact details are slow to emerge.

Apart from Mr Obi, acting NPA MD, Mohammed Bello-Koko, and former minister and serving senator, Stella Oduah, have been reported in the PREMIUM TIMES' ongoing Pandora Papers series. Others included Governor Abubakar Bagudu of Kebbi State, Governor Gboyega Oyetola of Osun State as well as his associates including former Lagos Bola Tinubu, and Ogun State Governor Dapo Abiodun. We also reported the offshore links of children of former NSA Sambo Dasuki and billionaire Leno Adesanya.

PREMIUM TIMES learnt that President Muhammadu Buhari has requested relevant law agencies, including the EFCC, Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit, and the Code of Conduct Bureau to investigate all Nigerians whose secret, many times suspicious, dealings were exposed in Pandora Papers series.

It is not clear if the EFCC's action on Mr Obi is connected to Mr Buhari's directive.

However, a source said the anti-graft agency's investigations would be extended to "all persons reported with links to the Pandora Papers."

"It is an ongoing, gradual process," the source said, asking not to be identified.

AllAfrica publishes around 700 reports a day from more than 100 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.

X