FG Prepares Prosecution Of Suspended EFCC Boss, Ibrahim Magu

FG Prepares Prosecution Of Suspended EFCC Boss, Ibrahim Magu

FG Prepares Prosecution Of Suspended Boss, Ibrahim Magu

The Federal Government is set to begin the prosecution of embattled acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (), Ibrahim Magu, over corruption allega­tions leveled against him.

Magu, who was arrested on Monday by a combined team of Department of State Services (DSS) personnel and policemen at the Wuse II of­fice of the , is facing an interagency committee led by Justice Ayo Salami, which is investigating allegations against him.

He was detained at the FCID in Area 10, Abuja, on Monday night on the orders of the committee that also questioned him on Tuesday morning.

Daily Independent also gathered that President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered Magu’s suspension from office following recom­mendations from the Ayo Salami panel. Secretary to EFCC, Olanipekun Olu­koyede, will take over as act­ing chairman of the anti-graft agency.

It was gathered that while the committee asked him to step down pending the conclu­sion of the investigation, he remained adamant prompt­ing the panel to recommend his suspension to the presi­dent.

Magu’s Probe Continues In Aso Rock

There are indications that the embattled EFCC chair­man may have given up on the bid to save his job as the Justice Ayo Salami-led pan­el investigating allegations against him continued on Tuesday.

Early findings by Daily Independent on Tuesday, showed Magu moved some of his belongings out of the headquarters of the commis­sion, signaling that he may not return to his position upon the conclusion of the investigation.

According to impeccable security sources, the EFCC boss instructed his aides to move his belongings from the office on Tuesday morn­ing while he was on his way to the presidency for the second day of his grilling.

The source disclosed that the aides came to the EFCC headquarters in two vehicles to pack some of his belong­ings while it was gathered that the aides may come again on Wednesday to pack what remains in the office.

State House correspon­dents, who observed some of the panel members arriving at the Banquet Hall, venue of the interrogation, by noon noticed some frenetic activ­ities in the premises about 1:33p.m.

A convoy of about four ve­hicles, which appeared to be conveying a VIP, drove into the premises, but it could not be immediately established whether Magu was the digni­tary being conveyed.

The convoy had a Peugeot sedan sandwiched by two Toyota Hilux vans occupied by several security personnel who apparently provided cov­er for the lead car.

After a brief vetting by the DSS officials at the gate, the convoy was waved on to join the panel meeting at the Ban­quet Hall.

Again, access was on Tues­day denied reporters by secu­rity details at the entrance to the area akin to what trans­pired on Monday when sitting began in earnest.

Meanwhile, it was gath­ered that Monday’s incident, which led to the alleged arrest of Magu, was consequent upon the EFCC boss’ reluc­tance to respond to the panel’s several invitations officially extended to him.

The panel was also accord­ing Magu due respect by let­ting him keep and have access to his phones, allowing him to go for prayers by himself, as well as serving him dinner while still being quizzed by members.

It was also learnt that while Magu had resisted attempts to get him into a car at the end of Monday’s sitting rather than the back of a pickup truck, which he opted for, he had also warned his handlers to remember that he was still a commissioner of police and must be treated as such.

Why We’re Probing Magu – Presidency

Again, the presidency has explained that the ongoing probe of the acting chair­man of the Economic and Fi­nancial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, was to enable him clear himself of all allegations, many of which are very weighty.

A presidency source also noted that the investigation of the EFCC boss was an in­dication that nobody in the present administration was above the law.

According to facts made available to State House cor­respondents by the source in Abuja on Tuesday, the inter­rogation of the anti-graft boss reinforced the Muhammadu Buhari administration’s com­mitment to transparency and accountability.

It also affirmed that the holder of an elevated office such as the chairman of the EFCC must be above suspi­cion.

It assured that the admin­istration would not prejudge anyone as it could be counted on to uphold justice and fair­ness.

The source stated: “The panel investigating allega­tions against the acting EFCC chairman has been sitting for some weeks now.

“In consonance with the principle of fairness and justice, it was needful that the acting chairman be given an opportunity to respond to the allegations, which are weighty in nature.

“Under the Muhammadu Buhari administration, no­body is above scrutiny. Repeat: nobody.

“The investigation is to reinforce transparency and accountability rather than to vitiate it.

“Accountability for our actions or inactions is an in­alienable part of democracy.

“In such an elevated posi­tion as that of the EFCC chair­man, the holder of the posi­tion must be above suspicion.

“There’s no prejudgment. Absolutely none. The Buhari administration can be count­ed on to uphold fairness and justice at all times.”

The source could, howev­er, not confirm whether Magu had indeed been suspended as widely reported on Tuesday.

Salami Unfit To Head Panel Against Magu — Bode George

Chief Olabode George, a former Deputy National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has faulted the composition of a presidential panel set up to investigate Magu, saying he who comes to equity must come with clean hands.

Speaking with Daily Inde­pendent, George said Justice Ayo Salami, a former Presi­dent of the Court of Appeal, is unfit to chair the panel based on his antecedents.

George, the Atona Oodua of Yorubaland, also said he will wait for the outcome of the investigation before mak­ing a statement on Magu’s travails.

How Okiro Suspended Magu Over Case Files

The acting chairman of EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, was once suspended in 2008 by former Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mike Okiro.

His suspension stemmed from allegations by former EFCC chairman, retired Assistant Inspector-General of Police (AIG), Mrs. Farida Waziri.

Waziri was said to have discovered on assumption of duty as acting chairman in May 2008, that case files of top Nigerians investigated by Magu during Nuhu Ribadu’s tenure were missing.

Ribadu was the first chair­man of the EFCC when the commission was set up by former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Ribadu was said to have de­ployed Magu to a section that handled high profile cases.

Mrs. Waziri, on discover­ing that some case files were missing, was said to have con­tacted Magu to surrender all case files under his custody as he had already been deployed out of the commission, after Ribadu was relieved of his appointment.

Magu was said to have de­nied keeping official case files in his house.

His denial was said to have prompted Mrs. Waziri to order a raid of his residence where the files were recovered.

Consequently, the infuri­ated Waziri was said to have alerted late President Umar Yar’Adua of Magu’s act of official misconduct and the recovery of the files.

The late president was said to have subsequently ordered the then IGP, Sir Okiro, to in­terdict Magu.

The Police Service Com­mission in December 2010 found Magu guilty of action prejudicial to state security, withholding of EFCC files, sabotage, unauthorised re­moval of EFCC files – acts unbecoming of a police offi­cer – and awarded him severe reprimand.

Okiro confirmed to Daily Independent on the phone on Tuesday that he remem­bered “Magu was suspended because of files”.

He added: “When an offi­cer is suspended, there is no time frame until his case is decided.”

However, Magu was re­instated into the police after about four years.

His reinstatement was said to have been facilitat­ed by one of the former IGPs and the immediate past chairman of the EFCC during President Goodluck Jonathan’s regime.

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