The Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Ola Olukoyede, has issued a directive to halt nighttime sting operations in all of the commission’s commands, following a controversial arrest of 69 suspected internet fraudsters in Ile-Ife, Osun State.
This move is in line with the recently reviewed procedures on the arrest and bail of suspects by the anti-graft agency.
According to a statement released by the EFCC’s Head of Media and Publicity, Dele Oyewale, Mr. Olukoyede made this decision during a meeting in Abuja on Wednesday, November 1, 2023, as a response to the incident involving operatives of the Ibadan Zonal Command.
“The Executive Chairman of the Commission, Mr. Ola Olukoyede, has directed that sting operations at nighttime be stopped in all the commands of the EFCC,” Oyewale announced.
The controversy erupted after the Ibadan Zonal Command carried out a late-night operation in Ile-Ife, Osun State, resulting in the arrest of 69 individuals suspected of involvement in internet fraud. Many of these suspects have since been duly profiled by the Command and subsequently released.
The EFCC spokesperson emphasized that the profiling of suspects who remain in custody will be completed without further delay.
In light of this development, the EFCC wishes to reassure the public that it remains committed to upholding the rule of law while fulfilling its mandate. The decision to cease nighttime sting operations is part of a broader effort to ensure that the commission conducts its operations transparently and in accordance with legal procedures.
This directive comes at a time when the EFCC is facing increased scrutiny and criticism over its arrest and detention methods. The commission’s commitment to adhering to the rule of law is intended to address these concerns and maintain public trust in its operations.
As the EFCC undergoes these procedural changes, the public will be watching closely to see how the commission balances its duty to combat financial crimes with the need to protect the rights of individuals under investigation.