This and many more are the questions on the lips of many; has the EFCC reverted to the days of media trial where public sentiments are whippped up against perceived corrupt individuals? If that is not the case then someone is not telling Nigerians the truth about these landed properties confisticated in the federal capital.
According to Sylva’s counsel, Mr. Benson Ibezim, the purported seizure of his client’s properties by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over alleged N6.46 billion fraud is a “media trial and condemnation without getting to the root and substance of the facts.”
In a statement, the former governor through his counsel stated that “Trials are done in courts of law and not on the pages of newspapers where the general public is fed with all manner of falsehood, including imaginary 48 houses.” Therefore, “We humbly and respectfully call on the media to exercise due diligence in their reporting.
“We were astonished to read from virtually all Nigerian newspapers that 48 houses belonging to Chief Timipre Sylva were seized. In the first instance, Chief Timipre Sylva does not have 48 properties anywhere in the world. The three properties he has in Abuja had been secured by an order of court granted by F.C.T. High Court and the Attorney General of the Federation and EFCC have been duly served since the 27th day of December, 2012.
“The three properties covered by the order of F.C.T. High Court are properties that were legitimately acquired by Chief Timipre Sylva and his wife before he became the executive governor of Bayelsa State. The records are quite clear on these properties as there is no iota of doubt as to the period of their acquisition-moreso as these properties were duly declared by Chief Timipre Sylva on his assumption of office as the governor of Bayelsa State.”
Ibezim added that when Sylva became aware of the plot by EFCC to humiliate him by throwing him out of a house that he bought even before he became the governor of Bayelsa State, “we wrote a letter to the Attorney General of the Federation and the Chairman of EFCC” but “Till date, both of them did not respond to the said letters.”
Ibezim called on the EFCC to obey the existing court order against it as a law abiding body.
“EFCC being a creation of law is expected to be law abiding and is advised to respect the order of FCT High Court of the 27th day of December, 2012 regarding the properties covered by the order.”