The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has broken it silence on the raid of the head office of The SUN newspaper in Lagos.
On Monday morning, well-armed operatives of the agency invaded premises of the newspaper and disrupted its operation for about an hour.
The SUN had alleged witch hunt, accusing Ibrahim Magu, acting chairman of the commission, of masterminding the invasion over a story written about his wife.
But in its statement, the agency said the raid was part of routine efforts to ascertain the state of the assets of the publishing company which is subject of subsisting interim forfeiture order.
The anti-graft agency said in the course of its prosecution of Orji Uzor Kalu, former governor of Abia state and owner of the company, it had obtained an asset forfeiture order which has since been appealed by the organisation.
“Operatives of the EFCC in the early hours of June 12, 2017, visited the head office of the Sun Newspaper in Lagos. The visit which lasted for less an hour was part of routine efforts to ascertain the state of the assets of the publishing company which is subject of subsisting interim forfeiture order,” the statement by EFCC read.
“Prior to the visit, the commission had written to the management of the company to account for its management of the assets for the period of the subsisting court order.
“The commission still awaits the response of The SUN and will not be distracted by any attempt to whip up sentiments by alluding to an appeal which has been pending for ten years. The commission’s action is without prejudice to any appeal and only meant to verify the integrity of the assets.”
The EFCC also denied some allegations contained in the statement which the management of the company released after the raid.
“Contrary to claims in a statement released to the media by the management of The SUN, no employee of the media outfit was molested or intimidated for the few minutes that operatives of the commission spent in the premises of the company,” the statement read.
“The claim that ‘EFCC operatives subjected our staff to crude intimidation, psychological and emotional trauma, even as some of the men accused our organisation of publishing pro-Biafra, Boko Haram, and Niger Delta Militant stories,’ is strange and clearly the figment of the imagination of the Sun.
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