The Federal Government has received praise from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for the Central Bank of Nigeria’s redesign of the naira note, stating that it will prevent vote buying in the upcoming elections in 2023.
AbdulRasheed Bawa, the chairman of the EFCC, insisted that the new policy will help the agency track those who are holding currency legally and illegally.
Bawa on Thursday made this known to journalists, after defending the commission’s 2023 budget before the Senate Committee on Anti-Corruption as EFCC would continue to partner with the Independent National Electoral Commission to curb vote buying, especially during the 2023 general elections.
“We welcome the policy, it is a good thing that the country is redesigning its currency because how can you have an effective monetary policy when you don’t have control over 85 per cent of your currencies?
“Out there, people are holding it, people are using it to speculate on foreign currencies, and so coming out with this policy, the government is trying to contend with it.
“I am sure that we will be able to monitor those people that are holding back this money whether legitimately or illegitimately and the right cause of the law will take its course.
“We will continue to do what we have to do, we are trying to ensure that illegitimate funds are not finding their way into our electoral processes”, he added.
Bawa said that the commission would partner with INEC to arrest and prosecute persons involved in vote buying.
The commission’s chairman said that cases of those arrested for vote buying in previous elections were ongoing in court.
Bawa also expressed appreciation to the National Assembly for supporting the commission via landmark legislation designed to further assist it in delivering on its mandate.
“I want to use this opportunity to thank the National Assembly for their support as EFCC chairman, particularly the anti-corruption committee.
“They have been with us 100 per cent. You remember recently they have worked with us to pass landmark acts and legislations and the president had assented to it.
“So, we are working with them towards ensuring that this country is free of economic and financial crimes,” he said.