Senators loyal to the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, under the aegis of ‘Like Minds,’ on Thursday questioned the invitation of his wife, Toyin, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commissions over alleged corruption, expressing concerns that the probe may be politically-motivated.
The group, in a statement said it found the decision of the anti-graft agency to invite Mrs. Saraki in connection with an unknown investigation “very curious”.
PREMIUM TIMES had exclusively reported on Wednesday reported the invitation of Mrs. Saraki, who was first lady of Kwara State between 2003 and 2011.
This newspaper also reported the invitation of a daughter of late President Umaru Yar’Adua, Zainab, who is also the wife of former governor of Kebbi State.
Mrs. Saraki, who is billed to appear before the Commission on July 28, said earlier on Thursday said she would cooperate with it.
Her husband has been enmeshed in a battle with the leadership of his party, All Progressives Congress, over his emergence as senate president on June 9.
The group of senators in the statement signed by Dino Melaye (Kogi West) said it “hoped that the invitation of Mrs Saraki was not politically motivated or linked with the on-going leadership tussle in the Senate”.
It noted that the decision of the EFCC to invite the former first lady created a lot of coincidences which any discerning mind would not want to ignore.
“Though, we do not want to make any hasty conclusion, we are surprised that about five years after the Sarakis left Government House, Ilorin, the EFCC suddenly realized the need to invite the wife. We hope this is not part of the plot we have heard about aimed at wrestling the Senate President down with different tactics,” the statement said.
“We have heard some of our colleagues and their sponsors boasting about throwing all types of mud at the leadership of the Senate in the bid to force it to accept their conditions.
“The EFCC definitely should perform its lawful duties but we warn that it should not return us to the dark days when the anti-graft agency was frequently and flagrantly used as a political weapon,” the lawmakers said.
The group said its members would continue to watch closely developments around the Mrs. Saraki’s invitation and make its position known to members of the public.