Lagos State chapter of the Nigeria Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ) has called on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to report the investigation conducted on the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) housing scheme.
The chairperson, Sekinah Lawal, while addressing newsmen in Ikeja, yesterday, disclosed that after two years of investigation into the alleged fraud, the group expects the EFCC to present the report of its findings.
She expressed displeasure over the failure of the EFCC to disclose the outcome of its investigations.
“We call on the leadership of the EFCC in Lagos to summon the courage to issue a report on their findings after two years of investigation and proceed to do the needful,” she said.According to her, no fewer than 800 persons, mostly journalists, subscribed to the housing scheme, which was now suspected to be a scam.
She decried EFCC’s silence on a petition submitted two years ago by 26 of the subscribers calling for a probe of NAWOJ president, Ifeyinwa Omowole, over the failed housing scheme.Also, NUJ chairman, The Nation chapel, Mr. Musa Odoshimokhe, contended that the election conducted last Thursday by NAWOJ, Lagos chapter, in disobedience of a court order, was null and void.
“The election season came amid a struggle to get justice for our members who had lost about N150 million in a fraudulent housing scheme, spearheaded by Mrs. Omowole, who saw a window of opportunity in the planned Lagos NAWOJ election to wrest power from the vocal incumbent chairperson of NAWOJ, Hajia Sekinah Lawal, and subscribers who were prosecuting a case against her (Omowole).
“After suffering the inaction of the past national and state leadership of the NUJ in the last three years regarding the housing fraud, some of the subscribers even reported those involved to the EFCC.“Mrs Omowole openly boasted that nothing would come out of the EFCC (probe) and, truly, the EFCC has stopped working on the fraud case,” Lawal lamented.
She argued that the May 23 Lagos NAWOJ election could not stand, as it was conducted against the order of the National Industrial Court (NIC).She therefore promised that the housing scheme subscribers would do everything legally possible to get justice, and called on the EFCC to release its probe report on the housing scheme.
“There shall be no retreat and no surrender in our collective struggle for justice, as we are assured that the harder the struggle, the more glorious shall be our triumph,” she added.