By Danjuma Mohammed, Abuja.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC) may have frozen the personal bank accounts of some top media brass, SECURITY MONITOR has been reliably informed.
Sources close to our correspondent listed those affected as The Source, Mrs Comfort Obi and Thisday Newspaper publisher, Mr Nduka Obiagbena.
A reliable source told our correspondent that the publishers ran a ‘musketeer chain’ that was responsible for distributing funds to media practitioners in the attempt to ensure the second coming of ousted President Goodluck Jonathan.
An informant hinted our correspondent that due to the ‘freeze’ the publishers have been having ‘hell of a time’ meeting their financial obligations.
SECURITY MONITOR heard that Mrs Obi’s Ikeja office was the hub for all the financial transaction involving pro-Jonathan media practitioners who traded their profession and the future of the country for personal and parochial financial gains.
“The EFCC faced two options. The first was to arrest the publishers; the second was to seal up their media organizations. But a third option was put forward that their personal accounts be frozen. That was the step take by the EFCC.’
According to our source, the money traced to the three publishers run into billions of naira. “Mrs Obi collects the money and then invited the publishers that were sympathetic to Mr Jonathan. We have pictures to show a line-up of newspaper editors who throng his office on Saturdays to collect raw dollars. It was a big shame.” In the past three months, Mrs Obi has found it difficult to pay the salaries of her workers. Last month the weekly publication was suspended and had to publish only online due to financial brickbats.
Another source told our correspondent that three publishers have been making frantic efforts to reach out to authorities in Abuja to ensure the lip is taken off their accounts. “The publishers have been meeting brick walls in the search for a solution. Their accounts have been frozen because illicit funds were traced into their accounts. It is unlikely they will be arrested, but definitely, they will be squeezed and be made to feel the heat’, the source said.