Former President Goodluck Jonathan on Monday explained the circumstances surrounding the removal of the former chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Farida Waziri, in 2007.
The ex-president in a statement issued by his media adviser, Ikechukwu Eze, said he had no personal problem with the ex-EFCC supremo, adding that she was removed in the country’s interest.
Waziri had claimed in her new book that she was removed by Jonathan for probing some corrupt individuals in the country.
According to the former president, he retained Waziri, who was appointed by the late President Umaru Yar’Adua despite obvious disenchantment from many Nigerians and mounting international pressure against her continued stay in office as anti-graft czar.
The statement read: “We read media reports credited to the former boss of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mrs. Farida Waziri, in which she claimed in her new book that she was removed from office by ex-President Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, because of her probe of some oil racketeers.
“We thought we had dealt with this matter, after promptly debunking similar statements she made in the past.
In 2017 when she claimed that she lost her job because she ‘refused to back down from the probe of one of the masterminds of the fuel subsidy scam. We quickly refuted and clarified the claim for the records, and even challenged her to name the individual or company in question.
“We had expected that a book from Mrs. Farida, coming years after the claim was first made, should have towed the path of honor by telling the truth for the benefit of history. Unfortunately, that still didn’t happen.
“It will be recalled that after assuming office as President on May 6, 2010, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan decided to retain Mrs. Waziri, who was appointed by his predecessor, late President Umaru Yar’Adua, as the head of the elite anti-crime agency.
Despite obvious disenchantment from many Nigerians and mounting international pressure against Mrs. Waziri’s continued stay in office, the former President stood by her, in line with his conviction that every public officer should first be given the opportunity to deliver on his or her mandate.