The United Sates government will continue to support efforts of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in tacking economic crimes and corruption in Nigeria.
James Entwistle, new American Ambassador to Nigeria made the pledge in Abuja when he paid a courtesy visit on the EFCC Chairman, Ibrahim Lamorde.
The American envoy who observed that corruption remains a global challenge, pledge his country’s continued support to the EFCC. Even though he did not state the form the support will take, he said he was impressed with the programme of the Commission and that his country will support the EFCC “in any way we can”.
He said the US government remains a major international ally of the Commission in the fight against corruption and financial crimes, adding that the agency has had several joint operations with a number of US law enforcement organizations including the FBI and the US Postal Inspection Service. “We will do our utmost best not to let you down.
We know you have confidence in us; we will make sure that the confidence is not misplaced.
The US does not want us to be involved in politics and we will try to do that so that we don’t get drown in politics,” he said.
The EFCC chairman said the Commission remains neutral and non-partisan in the discharge charge of its responsibilities. “Most of the times anything that happens, whether people are at fault they blame it on someone else.
Even when there is a genuine case and you go after an individual, they will start saying that he is being haunted because he is this or that. It is a situation that is laden with landmine now.
So we have to meander to avoid stepping on the landmine so that they don’t blow us up. It is very difficult. We went through that in 2011.
Sometime when election is coming it become very difficult to do anything.”
He however assured the ambassador that the Commission will not be deterred.
“We have decided to do our job to the best of our ability with the dictate of our conscience knowing what is right and what is not”
He said despite the challenges confronting the Commission, it was able to secure one hundred and seventeen (117) convictions in 2013.