Okoi Obono-Obla, the former chairman of the Special Investigation Panel for the Recovery of Public Property (SPIP), has been declared wanted by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).
The anti-graft agency in a statement, revealed that it took the step due to Obono-Obla’s ‘repeated failure to appear before it to answer questions bordering on allegations of fraud and corruption’.
Obono-Obla was suspended in August by President Muhammadu Buhari who declared that the suspension would be in force till the conclusion of the investigation of the ICPC.
In a statement on Tuesday, ICPC said Obono-Obla had refused to honour its invitation over a series of allegations levelled against him.
The statement reads:
“The Commission is in receipt of petitions accusing him of abuse of office, falsification of admission records, living above his income and collection of gratification from suspects under his investigation.
The suspended chairman is also facing allegations of working outside the guidelines governing the panel by investigating unauthorized petitions and prosecuting suspects without recourse to the office of the Attorney General of the Federation.
ICPC had conducted series of investigations on the allegations with preliminary findings showing that some provisions of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000 and extant laws of Nigeria had been allegedly violated by Mr. Obono-Obla.”
The agency added that it had established that Obono-Obla fled the country in August and had not returned since then.
“Consequently, ICPC had extended several invitations to him, which he had failed to honour without giving any reason.
Attempts to track and make him appear before the Commission also failed leading ICPC to contact other law enforcement agencies for assistance concerning his whereabouts.
One of such contact has yielded results as records from the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) show that Obono-Obla had travelled out of the country.
The NIS records revealed that he left the country to an undisclosed location on 17th August, 2019, through the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Ikeja, and has not returned two months after.”