Ododo committed criminal offence by aiding Yahaya Bello’s escape– Sagay

Itse Sagay, former chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC), says Usman Ododo, governor of Kogi, committed a criminal offence by shielding Yahaya Bello, his predecessor, from arrest.


Last week, operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) restricted movement in and around Bello’s house on Benghazi street, Wuse Zone 4, Abuja.


Hours later, Ododo arrived at Bello’s residence and was reportedly seen leaving with his predecessor.


Speaking with TheCable, Sagay said Ododo abused the immunity privilege he enjoys by whisking Bello away and preventing his arrest by anti-graft officials.


 “That was a clear abuse of immunity. The immunity provision is meant for him alone. He has no right to extend it to other people. What he did by aiding Yahaya Bello’s escape was illegal and unconstitutional,” Sagay said.


“It is good the EFCC officials were restrained because they would have been justified in physically engaging the governor’s security team in order to seize Yahaya Bello from them.


“What the governor did was illegal. He was hiding a fugitive and that is a criminal offence. He is making himself an accessory after the fact.”


Sagay also advised Bello to honourably submit himself to the EFCC in order to avoid being humiliated. He said no matter how Bello tries to hide, the anti-graft agency will eventually smoke him out.


“Whether his hands are clean or not, he should come out and report to EFCC. If he doesn’t, in the end they will still get to him,” he added.


“If he reports himself voluntarily, he will be treated with respect. They will interview him and if they see nothing serious enough to detain him, they will release him.


“If they have anything on him, they will give him administrative bail and he will go home to prepare for his defence. So, what he is doing now by hiding is that he is bringing down his own image and bringing himself down in public.


 “He is creating a situation in which he may be humiliated unnecessarily. At the end of the day, they will still get him. So, I will advise him to surrender himself in a responsible manner so that his dignity could be kept intact.”


The EFCC is accusing Bello of financial misappropriation and corruption to the tune of N80.2 billion.

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