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EFCC, Nigeria's New Fraud Busters (Posted 5th Aug, 2003) Tell your friends about this page! Email it to them.

Nuhu Ribadu, Chairman of EFCCThe buzz word in Nigeria today is the EFCC. This newly constituted Economic and Financial Crimes Commission sent an audible message to the enemy camp by clamping down on advance free fraud (419) kingpins in the country within a month of its commissioning. The EFCC was established by an Act of Parliament on 13th December, 2002. The commission has far reaching functions and powers which cut across crimes involving advance free fraud, money laundering, counterfeiting, illegal charge transfers, futures market fraud, fraudulent encashment of negotiable instruments, computer credit card fraud, and contract scam, among others. They can collaborate with any government body both within and outside Nigeria carrying out functions wholly or in part analogous with those of the Commission concerning a variety of crimes.

The Commission is composed of the Chairman, who is the Chief Executive and Accounting Officer; the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria or his representative; a representative each of the following Federal Ministries not below the rank of a Director, Foreign Affairs, Finance, Justice; the Chairman National Drug Law enforcement Agency (NDLEA); the Director General of – the National Intelligence Agency, the Department of State security Services; the Director-General Securities and Exchange Commission; the Commissioner for Insurance; the Postmaster-General of the Nigerian Postal Services; the Chairman, Nigerian Communications Commission; the Comptroller-General, Nigeria Customs Services; the Comptroller-General, Nigeria Immigration Services; a representative of the Nigeria Police Force not below the rank of an Assistant Inspector-General of Police; four eminent Nigerians with cognate experience in any of the following – finance, banking or accounting; and a Director-General who shall be the head of administration. The members of the Commission, other than the Chairman and the Director-General, shall be part time members.

At the helm of affairs of the Commission is, Nuhu Ribadu, a former (until current appointment) Assistant Commissioner of Police and head, Legal and Prosecution Department of the Nigerian Police Force. Ribadu an indigene of Yola, Adamawa State, is a 1983 law graduate of the Ahmadu Bello University; Zaria. He joined the Nigerian Police Force on January 1, 1986 and is reputed to have the highest number of prosecutions in the force. According to him the responsibility of the Commission is enormous, but the body is committed to redeem the battered image of Nigeria.

Nuhu Ribadu, Chairman of EFCCFrom all indications, Ribadu seems set to tackle the perpetrators of financial crimes in the country. He plans to send an amendment to the existing Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act 1995 No. 13, with a proposal to include email fraud, fraud via any telecommunications medium and monitoring of existing Internet (cyber) cafés. He stressed the fact that such bodies like the EFCC must be open to all categories of people especially those that have been defrauded. In a measure to assure this openness, he said the body has a website and a physical address in Lagos which is open 24 hours daily.

Ribadu is passionate about his new job, with 3 Inspector General of Police’s commendation (1997, 1998 and 2000), he should know what it takes to tackle criminals. He appeals to Nigerians and foreigners alike not to lose hope in the country and feel free to give useful information to the Commission. According to him, we cannot allow things to continue at such a deteriorating rate and he believes that ridding Nigeria from the clutches of criminals is the responsibility of all well-meaning Nigerians. He promises that the EFCC will be different from other bodies before its existence as all complaints will be treated with utmost secrecy and prompt action.

According to him they have been able to dock over 50 financial criminals till date. The impact of their operation has led to some criminals refunding monies fraudulently obtained from foreigners. A similar scene played itself out when our correspondent visited Ribadu, a German national called to thank the body after his money (some thousand of Euros) was returned by a fraudster who appealed to the foreigner to drop all charges against him at the EFCC. Time they say is the best judge, but we hope and believe this body will be able to uphold justice and integrity.

For further information contact:

Alhaji Nuhu Ribadu, Chairman,

Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC),

15 Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, Lagos,

Tel: +234-1-262-1293, 262-4187

Fax: +234-1-262-4189

Email: [email protected]

Website: http://www.efccnigeria.org/

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