We never denied Emefiele access to lawyers, family, DSS clarifies

The Department of State Services has clarified that the suspended governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, had never been denied access to his lawyers, medical officers, as well as his relatives.

This clarification is coming after a Federal Capital Territory High Court sitting in Maitama ordered the DSS to allow Emefiele access to his lawyers and family members.

Emefiele was arrested on June 10, after he was suspended from the office by President Bola Tinubu, who cited reforms in the financial sector as well as investigation into his office as some of the reasons.

However,  in a statement on Saturday by the spokesperson for the Service, Peter Afunanya, he said the DSS had complied with its Standards Operating Procedures in the handling of the Emefiele matter.

The statement partly read, “It is instructive to state that the Service had granted the family of Emefiele, medical officials, and appropriate persons access to him, right from the day he was taken in and long before the court order requesting so. The Service implements Standards Operating Procedures on Suspect Handling and Investigation to the latter. It conducts its affairs transparently and professionally and respects the rule of law in compliance with democratic governance.”

Afunanya also stated that the Service had uncovered plans by individuals and groups to embark on campaigns against the DSS and the Federal Government over the suspension and investigation of Emefiele.

The statement added,  “The DSS has identified persons and groups planning to stage campaigns of calumny against it and the Government over the suspension and investigation of Mr. Godwin Emefiele. Such groups intend to gather at different points in Abuja and Lagos in the coming week with placards depicting the Service and the Government in a bad light as well as calling for the immediate release of Emefiele. Therefore, the Service is aware of the cheap propaganda aimed at demotivating and distracting it from professionally executing the onerous responsibilities assigned to it.”

Afunanya added that the DSS is also aware of plans to infiltrate the Service in order to use disloyal staff for “subversive aims” against its leadership.

It maintained that, “It has also noted the misleading commentaries, speculative narratives, storylines, and videos being circulated in the social media by uninformed parties, critics, and/or desperadoes. It is mindful of orchestrations to infiltrate its fold for the purpose of using disloyal staff for subversive aims against its leadership.”

Therefore, Afunanya warned those behind these activities to desist forthwith from their plans, stressing that, “The arrowheads are already under watch and will be apprehended when and if it becomes necessary.”

(Punch)