The Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Abdulrasheed Bawa, stated in an interview on Thursday that three currently-in-office state governors are being watched over their attempts to pay employees under the table in order to launder millions of naira that have been stashed away.
The EFCC chairman revealed in an interview yesterday that certain governors are actively coming up with ways to launder money they have hidden in homes. They are currently closely monitoring three of them, he claimed.
Bawa, who vowed not to reveal the identities of the three governors, did reveal that two of them are from the North and the third is from the South.
He said intelligence at the disposal of the commission, showed that the three governors have concluded plans to inject the money into the system through table payment of their state workers’ salaries.
“Let me tell you something, the Intel that I have yesterday and I would want you to take this thing very seriously. Already, some state governors that have some of this cash stashed in various houses and the rest are now trying to pay salaries in cash in their state,” he said. Asked whether the commission would summon the governors, the EFCC chair said they are closely monitoring them.
He added that “I don’t know how they want to achieve that but we have to stop them from doing that. Well, we are working, they have not paid the salaries in cash yet but it is a very serious thing”, saying the move is against section 2 of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act.
“The law is very clear regarding cash transactions. Anybody that is to consummate any cash transaction as an individual, if it is not through a financial institution must not be above N5million and if it is above that it is criminal for you to engage in such transaction. And for corporate entities it is N10million.
“Yes, I agree the salaries are not up to that but why are you all of a sudden, and all along you have been paying people salaries through their bank accounts and now you want to pay them in cash, what are you trying to do? They will come under a lot of guises, they are trying to do verification of officers, that is what we have gotten,” he said.