EFCC releases Atiku’s son-in-law, arrests his lead counsel
Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has released Babalele Abdullahi, son-in-law of Atiku Abubakar and Finance Director of some companies owned by the presidential candidate of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
Abdullahi was arrested on Saturday and released after the anti-graft agency invited Tanimu Turaki, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, leading the defence team of Atiku, to sign a bail document for him.
But the commission detained Turaki, who is also Deputy Director-General of PDP Presidential Campaign Organisation.
Tony Orilade, EFCC spokesman, confirmed Turaki’s arrest, yesterday, but did not give details, saying: “I heard of it yesterday; but let me get confirmation and the details.”
Paul Ibe, Abubakar’s spokesman, said Turaki is the lawyer coordinating the suit to challenge the outcome of the presidential election.
Noting that the suit had been finalised and was supposed to be filed in court yesterday, Ibe said: “He is the one coordinating the team of lawyers, so you should just use your tongue to count your teeth to understand why he has been arrested.
“Why is President Muhammadu Buhari and the APC scared of a legal challenge? Why are they mobilising all sorts of people and group to beg His Excellency (Atiku) not to go to court?”
Meanwhile, PDP, yesterday called for the immediate and unconditional release of Turaki, who was allegedly arrested on Monday by operatives of EFCC.
The party described Turaki’s arrest and detention as part of the “grand plot by the Buhari-led Presidency and APC to use state apparatus of power to intimidate PDP leaders and scuttle PDP’s determination to reclaim our February 23, 2019 Presidential election victory in court.”
In a statement released late Monday night by PDP spokesman, Kola Ologbondiyan, the party maintained that since its candidate, Atiku Abubakar, and the PDP expressed “our unwavering determination to reclaim our victory at the tribunal, being armed with overwhelming evidence, our leaders have been subjected to escalated harassments, constant threats, blackmails, cajoling and contrivances by the APC to drop our legal option.
“The PDP, however, states in clear terms that the APC and the Presidency are fighting a lost battle as no amount of harassment and threats will ever make the party to buckle in its determination to take back the mandate, in line with the wishes and aspirations of Nigerians.”
Turaki, a former Minister of Special Duties in the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan has been vociferous in his criticisms of the Present administration.