The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the February 23 presidential election, Atiku Abubakar, on Saturday said 24 operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission arrested his son-in-law, Alhaji Babalele Abdullahi.
He said Abdullahi, who is also finance director of Atiku Group of Companies, was arrested after the EFCC officials in two vehicles, an 18-seater Toyota bus with registration Abuja CS 522 RSH and a Hilux van, had invaded the Maitama residence of his son-in-law at about 8.30am.
A statement by Atiku’s media adviser, Mr Paul Ibe, said the EFCC officials were, however, not given access into the house until Abdullahi’s lawyers arrived.
He said, “In a desperate move to have Atiku Abubakar concede and congratulate President Muhammadu Buhari, officials of the EFCC at about 8.30am today (Saturday) invaded the Maitama residence of Babalele. They were, however, not given access into the house until his lawyers arrived.
“The EFCC agents numbering about two dozens came in two regular vehicles, an 18-seater Toyota bus (with registration Abuja CS 522 RSH) and a Hilux van. They came with a search warrant to search the house and the office of Babalele and found nothing incriminating.
“They then proceeded to his office at Oakland Centre in Maitama and found nothing incriminating there. However, they took away some documents of landed property. Not done, the EFCC officials stormed his Wuse residence where they again found nothing incriminating after the search.
“Afterwards, Babalele was taken away to the EFCC office in Wuse to make a statement alongside Mr Lawan Ayuba. It was gathered that the petition relied upon to invade the residence and the office of Babalele was authored by a brother of the wife of President Buhari.”
Ibe stated that as a law-abiding citizen, Atiku recognised the constitutional role of the EFCC and indeed any other agency of the government to carry out investigations, but would not be cowed by any attempt to blackmail him into mortgaging his mandate.
The statement reported Atiku as assuring Nigerians that under no circumstance would he mortgage what he called the mandate of Nigerians, which he claimed was freely expressed on February 23.