According to a report by The PUNCH, Idowu Mosope, one of the Compliance Officer of one of the hotels raided by the operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Celia’s Suit, Abeokuta, says guests harassed by EFCC operatives have threatened to sue the hotel over the invasion.
Mosope said this on Tuesday while reacting to the Monday invasion of his hotel and two others by the EFCC.
He lamented that no fewer than 25 operatives stormed the hotel and forcefully entered 15 rooms in the hotels while the guests were already sleeping.
He said some guests complained that they were naked when the EFCC operatives badged into their rooms around 3am on Monday in search of internet fraudsters.
The Compliance officer who claimed that he has attended series of training by EFCC on money laundering and fraud, said the operatives pointed guns at the guests and later went away with three guests that arrived Nigeria from Dubai.
EFCC operatives had invaded three hotels including government-owned hotel, MITRO Residences Annex in Abeokuta and whisked away 56 suspected fraudsters.
The EFCC Head of Public Affairs, Ibadan, Tokunbo Odeniyi, had confirmed the incident.
But, on Tuesday, Mosope faulted the manner adopted by the EFCC operatives to carry out their sting operation.
He said, “Very early at about 3:12 am on 13 of September, 2021, our security guards informed us that we were invaded by some gunmen that claimed that they were from the EFCC, they are numbering about 25.
“They came in commando-like at that odd time. They went to our front office at gun point, they threatened them, straight away, they were led to CCTV, our server room, they took our gadgets, the DVR after that, they collected hotel master cards, they did not allow our staff to lead them, they were opening the rooms one after the other with the master cards.
“They invaded the privacy of these guests without allowing our staff to guide them in line with the international standard and hotel practices that was not what they told us in the training .
“They did not knock, they did not spend more than 20 minutes here, it is like they are tracing somebody. If they had told us we would have shown them and other guests would not have known. They opened all the rooms and some guests were naked and scared.
“Now, the guests want to sue the hotel and not EFCC. They said why did we allow their privacy to be intruded, why did we give them master cards. We did not say they should not work, our boss hate anything like internet fraud. We don’t take them.”
He added that the EFCC operatives checked all the 15 rooms in the hotel, entered all the rooms and took away three guests.
“The guest came in on Saturday with his pregnant wife from Dubai and two of his friends.
“We collected his profile when he came and kept it.
“On his luggage we called police because the EFFC did not take his luggage away and his wife left the second day. We called police and they came to document it before we packed the load so that anytime he comes we can handover this luggage to him.
He however advised that the operatives need to be professional by arming themselves the warrant.
He said “They should have come with warrant of arrest of somebody they are tracing , we are partners in progress.
“They have told us that we should cooperate and we are cooperating, anybody that they are tracking they should show us so that other people will not be affected. This has called us bad image , reputation has gone bad this is demarketing on its own.”