The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) may be stripped of its powers to investigate financial crime offenders if the President eventually gives his assents to the amendment of the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Agency (NFIA) bill passed by the Senate today.
The bill was passed after it was read for the third time by the lawmakers but without the usual public hearing organized to consider opinions of concerned parties on the matter.
The Senate had referred the bill to the committee on anti-corruption on Tuesday for review and the committee submitted its report yesterday only for the bill to be unanimously passed today.
The Senate says the bill was given accelerated consideration to help Nigeria avoid expulsion from the Egmont group of Financial Intelligence unit.
The group recently suspended Nigeria over the absence of a legal framework that guarantees the independence of the country’s unity.
The Senate had earlier sought for the establishment of the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Agency (NIFA) as the central body in Nigeria.
The Bill which was sponsored on Tuesday by Senator Chukwuka Utazi, seeks to strip the Economic Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) of control over the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU).
The motion was seconded by Deputy Majority Leader Senator Bala Na’ Allah who urged his colleagues to do the needful and support the Bill.