Operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) have arrested former Anambra State governor, Willie Obiano.
Obiano was arrested at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos on Thursday, same day he handed over the reins to his successor, Prof. Charles Soludo, as governor of Anambra.
Obiano, who was governor of Anambra for eight years, was picked up by the EFCC operatives as he prepared to board a flight to Houston, in the US state of Texas.
Obiano had been on the watchlist of the commission months before his tenure as a governor ended.
In a letter to the Comptroller General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) dated November 15, 2021, EFCC requested the NIS to place the governor on a watchlist and inform it anytime he is travelling out of the country from any of the international airports and other points of entry and exit.
Sources told The Guardian then that the move was an indication that the agency may have been discreetly investigating the governor and possibly had intelligence that he planned to travel after handing over to Soludo.
Don Adinuba, who served under Obiano as commissioner for information, said at the time that EFCC’s decision to put Obiano on a watchlist was politically motivated.
“Governor Obiano has a whole four months to remain in office as the Anambra State chief executive,” Adinuba said. “Nobody in Nigeria can circumscribe his constitutionally conferred immunity which shields him from both criminal and civil prosecution.
“The EFCC went too far to announce in November that it is observing him. We are not aware of any state governor who had up to four months to be in office and the EFCC went on to sponsor media reports that he was being investigated.”