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Edeoga, a fugitive running away from the EFCC after looting Local Govt Funds: A Rejoinder

By Dr. Dons Eze

My attention has just been drawn to a vindictive article written by one Chinonso Ebube with the above caption where he referred to the authentic Governorship Candidate of the Labour Party in Enugu State as a criminally minded fugitive running away from justice and the EFCC after looting, pilfering, and plundering the treasure and monies belonging to the ministries of Local Government, local government councils, and Environment in the state between 2015 and 2022.

The unfortunate write up alleged that Chief Edeoga, the Okaome of Eha-Amufu, used his bonafide magazine, Enugu LGAs’ News, as a conduit pipe to blackmail, intimidate, threaten, extort and siphon billions of naira from the coffers of the 17 local government areas in the state.

Quoting a purported reports from an investigation made by the Mainstream Investigative Journalism, Ebube called on the EFCC to launch investigation into the mind-blowing and staggering corruption in the two ministries when Edeoga was the Commissioner.

I want to make it clear that Edeoga is not a fugitive running away from the EFCC. Nobody is a saint. Those accusing Chief Edeoga of corruption and looting should first come out with clean hands. Even if the Labour Party candidate looted funds belonging to the government, he worked for it. He suffered for the state government and even the local government. He has all the rights to steal money, if at all he did that.

Chief Edeoga is the owner of the LGAs’ News Magazine, and that’s incontrovertible. The money Edeoga was collecting from local government chairmen when he was commissioner was meant for the publications and payments of staff of the news outlets. Therefore, accusing Edeoga of embezzlement is unfounded.

For the umpteenth time, the EFCC boss knows where Chief Edeoga is living, and if they want to see him, they should invite him and stop dragging his name in media. Edeoga is not a criminal. The cost of productions of those magazines ran into billions of naira, and it’s not something new if he made demands on the local government chairmen. The magazines were meant to promote their governments. People should warn those chairmen that we have their secret and we will expose them if they keep running their mouths.

As an elder statesman, let me warn that insistence on handing Chief Edeoga over to the EFCC will spark ripple effect. Many people will be implicated in the business and management of the magazine. Heads are going to roll if Edeoga is arrested. Let’s allow the sleeping dog to lie in peace.

Those basking in the euphoria of holier-than-thou and sainthood should do soul-searching and know that they are even more corrupt than Edeoga. Everyone wears a baggage of corruption hanging on their necks. It’s, hence, unfair calling Chief Edeoga unprintable names, such as treasury looter and epitome of corruption.

Ebube and his sponsors should be warned that we also have their own dirty linen at the tips our fingers. Okaome will not be distracted with the baggage of corruption and looting hanging on his neck.

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