Tag Archives: #Magu

EFCC Probe: I’m Having No Regrets For Chairing Panel To Probe Magu – Justice Salami

Justice Ayo Salami, Chairman of the presidential panel investigating Ibrahim Magu, the suspended Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), says he does not regret his appointment to serve on the panel.

Magu is being investigated over allegations of abuse of office and mismanagement of recovered assets from May 2015 to May 2020 — the time he acted as Acting Chairman of the anti-graft agency.

Magu’s lawyers have always disagreed with the panel. But in a memo on Tuesday, Salami accused the lawyers of planting reports in the media that he regrets chairing the panel.

Justice Salami said in the memo that,“The reports were a figment of the wild imagination of the reporter, the two lawyers quoted as his sources and the medium that published the story,”

“There was no time anything near the unthinkable scenario painted in the false story occurred in any meeting between myself and the lawyers to Magu or any other person, for that matter, since the Judicial Commission of Inquiry began its sittings.

“I have no cause to express any regret over my Chairmanship of the Commission, not to talk of betraying any form of emotion before anyone about it. I see my appointment to serve as the Chairman of the Commission of Inquiry as an honour and call to service, thus my decision to accept diligently and patriotically discharge this responsibility.

“I have never appointed any of the two lawyers or any other person(s) to speak on my behalf as I can express myself without recourse to the lawyers of the persons we are probing. As an eminent jurist, who retired as the President of the Court of Appeal, I have handled much more complex cases than the current one before the Commission. There is no doubt that the false reports were aimed at causing mischief and tarnishing my hard-earned reputation and integrity. I remain resolute and committed to the service of the nation and ready to champion the ideals of justice and fairness.

“I want to point out that such wild claims against me and the Commission are not strange to me, given the manner in which the lawyers to Magu have been carrying on in the conduct of their client’s case before the Commission. Planting such lies in the media about proceedings at the panel has been their pastime. They believe that it is by engaging in such media propaganda against the Commission that their client can be easily absolved of the various allegations that have been brought against him.”

Asking Nigerians to disregard the report, the retired president of the appeal court said the “lies  and blackmail” will not deter him and other members of the panel from discharging their duty and mandate.

He said in conclusion, that the panel which he chairs will continue its investigation of the allegations against Magu with a view to unearthing the truth and ensuring that justice is done.

Source: Political Digest.

Update: Malami Frustrating DIEZANI’s Extradition Says Magu

The suspended Acting Chairman of EFCC, Ibrahim Magu accuses the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN) of frustrating the extradition of Diezani Allison-Madueke and other suspects.

The embattled acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, has responded to allegations that he frustrated the extradition of a former minister of petroleum, Diezani Alison-Madueke and other fugitives to face trial in Nigeria.

Rejecting the allegation, Mr Magu told the presidential probe panel investigating allegations of corruption against him, that it was his accuser, Abubakar Malami, who was actually frustrating the extradition of the fugitives.

In the report, originally published by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) and republished by several newspapers, Mr Magu was accused of refusing to cooperate with crime-fighting authorities in the United Kingdom to facilitate the return of Mrs Alison-Madueke to to the country to face corruption charges.

The report also claimed that Mr. Magu has refused to provide documentary evidence that would make the office of the Attorney General of the Federation commence the process of extraditing Mrs Alison-Madueke.

However, Mr Magu’s response to the presidential probe panel, shows that he denied refusing to share information with the National Crime Agency (NCA) of the United Kingdom. As he said: “The NCA still shares critical information with the Commission and conducts joint operations with the Commission under the Combined Inter-Agency Task Force (CIATF) and also directly. Classified documents in this regard can be produced for sighting on request and with the consent of the NCA.

The Commission is also jointly working with the NCA on several cases including the Diezani Allison-Madueke cases and all the Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA) requests on these cases are passed to the NCA and the Crown Prosecution Services through the Central Authority Unit (CAD) of the Ministry of Justice contrary to the allegations of the HAGF,” Mr Magu wrote.

He added that following the delay by UK authorities to charge Mrs Alison-Madueke, the EFCC wrote to the authorities in the country through the AGF requesting the extradition of the former petroleum minister so she can face pending charges in Nigeria.

Magu also added that Mr Malami has yet to communicate with the commission about the position of UK authorities on the request it made.

Contrary to the claim made against him by Mr Malami, the EFCC former Acting Chairman told the probe panel that under his leadership, “the EFCC maintained a good working relationship with the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation which recently acknowledged this relationship by commending the Commission publicly and on record.”

He added that apart from the request for the extradition of Mrs Alison-Madueke, the EFCC has made several requests through the AGF for the extradition of high profile Nigerian fugitives and that Mr Malami has yet to respond to any of the requests. “Some of these fugitives include Robert John Oshodin who laundered millions of United States Dollars on behalf of former National Security Adviser (NSA) Colonel Sambo Dasuki (Rtd), former Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta and Coordinator of the Amnesty Programme Mr Kingsley Kuku and Hima Aboubakar who was criminally indicted by the investigation of arms procurement conducted under the former NSA Colonel Sambo Dasuki (Rtd).

Attached and marked as Annexure 32 (a)-(e) are copies of the extradition requests of these fugitives. “The Commission also forwarded a Mutual Legal Assistance request to the AGF for onward transmission to the authorities of the British Virgin Island through a letter dated 9th September, 2019 wherein the Commission requested for critical information in respect of the P&ID case but the Commission is yet to receive any response from the office of the AGF,” Mr Magu wrote.

Mr Malami did not respond to calls made to him Tuesday morning seeking his comments for this story. Last week, Mr. Malami announced Mr. Magu’s suspension following President Muhammadu Buhari’s approval. Prior to his suspension he was arrested and brought before the probe panel headed by Justice Ayo Salami, a former President of the Court of Appeal.

Mr Magu is currently being investigated over allegations of corruption and insubordination levelled against him by Mr Malami.

After his arrest, allegations that Mr Magu diverted billions of naira gotten from recovered funds, as well as the interests accrued from the funds, were circulated and published on various media platforms. He rejected the charges saying all recovered assets are intact and can be accounted for.

Sources: News Agency of Nigeria and Premium Times

BREAKING: Buhari Orders Suspension EFCC Directors

President Muhammadu Buhari (Retd.), has ordered the suspension of 12 directors of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.

Also affected was the Commission Secretary, Olanipekun Olukoyede.

The order, our correspondent gathered, was handed down on Friday following a request by the Presidential Panel investigating the allegations of graft and misconduct against the former  EFCC acting Chairman, Ibrahim Magu.

Daily Watch Press learnt that the directors were directed by the Attorney General of the Federation,  Abubakar Malami (SAN) to proceed on suspension on Tuesday,  in compliance with the presidential directives or order.

A source said, “The panel actually requested the suspension of all the directors of the EFCC to go to enable the panel members to carry out a thorough investigation into the activities of the commission.

“Following the request, the President asked the AGF to direct the directors and other senior officials to proceed on suspension immediately.  The officials were informed on Tuesday.”

President Buhari Approves The Suspension of Magu As EFCC Acting Chairman

President Buhari has approved the immediate suspension of Ibrahim Magu as Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), to allow for unhindered inquiry by the Presidential Investigation Panel under the Tribunals of Inquiry Act and other relevant laws.

This is contained in a statement issued by Dr. Umar Jibrilu Gwandu, Special Assistant on Media and Public Relations Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice made available to newsmen on Friday the 10th day of July, 2020.

According to the statement, President Buhari has also approved that the EFCC Director of Operations, Mohammed Umar, should take charge and oversee the activities of the Commission pending the conclusion of the ongoing investigation and further directives in that regards.

Signed: Dr. Umar Jibrilu Gwandu,the Special Assistant on Media and Public Relations,
Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, today Friday, 10th day of July, 2020.

Who The New EFCC Acting Chairman, Muhammad Umar ABBA Is?

Mohammed Umar Abba, is the newly appointed Acting Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), following the suspension of Mr. Ibrahim Magu, who is being investigated for alleged corruption.

Mohammed Umar Abba, who, until his appointment, was the Director of Operations of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is hardly known or heard of until yesterday when the commission tip him to take over as the Acting Chairman being one of the most senior ranking officer within the commission.

Mr. Abba held from Kano State and he is a Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) and was the person who represented the commission last year in Lagos for the EFCC/FBI media briefing tagged Operation Rewired, where huge amount of money was recovered from Nigerian Fraudsters who defrauded America citizens and about 167 Nigerians were arrested.

As at the time of filing this report the age of the new EFCC Acting Chairman and educational background is still not known to the Daily Watch Press.

Abba has resumed duties yesterday. As the presidential probe panel on corruption allegations against the suspended acting chairman of EFCC, Ibrahim Magu sat again yesterday.

The panel is headed by the uncomfortable retire Judge, Justice Ayo Salami, the panel, which sat inside the Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa, Abuja, specifically looked at sundry documents and chatted with persons connected to the case.

Only unauthorised persons are allowed access to the premises, as Department of State Services (DSS) operatives manned the gate to provide watertight surveillance.

We will provide more updates on this development as things keep unfolding.

Presidential Committee Blame Malami For Undermining Buhari’s Fight Against Corruption

The Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, PACAC, has lambasted the minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, over the arrest of the acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Ibrahim Magu.

In a statement by Femi Odekunle, a member of the committee, the panel said the memo sent to President Muhammadu Buhari by Mr. Malami and the recent “arrest” are “outcome of power-play by power blocs in the corridors of power in which Malami appears to be an arrow-head or major agent of a power bloc that is not really interested in, or in support of, Buhari’s anti-corruption fight.”

The Press Release By Professor Femi Odekunle, Member, Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC).

This is a preliminary reaction of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC) to the alleged ‘arrest’ of Ibrahim Magu, Acting Chairman the Economic Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Of course, the real information reaching us is that he was only invited to appear before a Panel set up not long ago concerning some alleged memo by Malami, Attorney General and Minister of justice, regarding some alleged malfeasance by Magu, along with nominations for his replacement.

It was just that those sent to invite him for whatever reasons best known to them invited some press along and made it look an arrest. That mischief has been confirmed by some apparent afterthought denial by the DSS that it was not an arrest.

While PACAC has not had a formal meeting on this development, I have discussed with the Chairman and some other members and the following can be considered as PACAC’s preliminary reaction to this development.

1.The alleged originating Malami memo, up to the current “arrest” seems an outcome of power-play by power blocs in the corridors of power in which Malami appears to be an arrow-head or major agent of a power bloc that is not really interested in, or in support of, Buhari’s anti-corruption fight.

i. One can recall the earlier non-confirmation experience of Magu by the 8th Assembly, orchestrated by a power bloc and supported by the DSS ‘Security’ reports.

ii. One can also note the non-resubmission of Magu for confirmation since May, 2019 despite the apparent willingness of the 9th Assembly to consider it this time around.

iii. Furthermore, one must take cognisance of the alleged memo referred to earlier i.e by Malami concerning alleged corrupt practices by Magu, along with his own nominations for Magu’s replacement.

iv. Again, we cannot forget Malami’s demand of certain high profile case files from Magu which the latter has been resisting. The position of PACAC is that while Magu, or any official of whatever status, must be nailed if found to be corrupt, the President must be careful not to shoot its anti-corruption fight /modest achievements in the foot, and not to forget that EFCC under Magu has been the Administration’s anti-corruption poster-face. It may not be contestable that Malami has been exploiting his alleged loyalty and closeness to the President for his personal /power bloc agenda. For, to the best of PACAC’s knowledge and observations, Malami has not manifested any genuine commitment to the anti-corruption fight. Samplers: The nolle- prosequi entered in a case of corruption against Orubebe in relation to alleged malfeasance while Minister of Niger Delta Ministry; his secret meeting with fugitive Maina in Dubai under whatever guise/ excuse; his involvement in the surreptitious reinjection of the same Maina into the Civil Service; his supervision of Obono-Oblas’ kangaroo Asset Recovery outfit which Obono subsequently ran out of the country when exposed by some ICPC investigation; his non-due attention, by design or default, to the P&ID matter since 2015 until it was blown open by humongous financial damage to the country; etc. Notwithstanding the situation at hand, the hope of PACAC is that the President would wake up to the ongoing shenanigans of power players that are working from the inside against his anti-corruption fight. We are also counting on the experience and dexterity of the new Chief of Staff, Professor Ibrahim Gambari whose loyalty to the President and good of the country cannot be doubted, and we also hope that the demonstrated integrity of retired Justice Salami would carry the day for thoroughness, fairness and justice in the interest of the anti-corruption fight.

Culled from the Daily Nigeria.

DSS Denied Arresting The EFCC Boss, Magu Only Invited

As against the report by Channels TV which was reechoed by other media houses about a purported arrest of the Acting Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Malam Ibrahim Magu, the DSS denied the report.

The Public Relations Officer, Department of State Services, Mr Peter Afunanya, Ph.D
National Headquarters, in Abuja yesterday, issued a statement denying the reports and said:

“The Department of State Services (DSS) wishes to inform the public that it did not arrest Ibrahim MAGU, Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) as has been reported by sections of the media.

“The Service, has since, today, 6th July, 2020, been inundated with enquiries over the alleged arrest.” He concluded.

But the spokesman of the DSS in their usual modus has not shed any light on the reason behind the invitation of the EFCC Boss.

EFCC: President Buhari approve Magu’s INVESTIGATION PROSECUTION, The Honeymoon Is Over

The acting Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu may be on his way out of office, and also may be looking forward towards accounting for alleged infractions preferred against him by Abubakar Malami, the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice.

Sources within the presidency said President Muhammadu Buhari had given Malami approval to investigate and prosecute Magu following his memorandum, where he itemised 22 weighty allegations against the EFCC chairman, who has occupied the office for nearly five years in acting capacity.

The sources said the EFCC chairman will temporarily hand over the anti-graft agency to the next most senior person, Mohammed Umar Abba, Director of Operations of the agency.

Malami had also included a short list of three candidates for consideration to replace Magu. Our sources said FCT Commissioner of Police, Bala Ciroma, may ultimately replace him, being the most favoured among the three names Malami submitted to the president.

One of the sources said the president wanted the panel to investigate the authenticity of the property and proxy allegations against Magu, noting that “because of the weight of the allegations, and the kind of person managing the EFCC, the president wouldn’t want to take any decision in a hurry. So he made sure a crack team is assembled to look into the matter holistically.”

According to him, Ayo Salami, former President of Court of Appeal, is heading the panel with the offices of National Security Adviser (NSA); Director General, Department of State Services (DSS); Director General, National Intelligence Agency (NIA), the Police, and Attorney General of the Federation as members.

According to the source, the panel has two weeks to submit its report to the president, but had already done a week.

Malami, had in his memorandum to the president, made allegations bordering on financial malfeasances in failure to declare actual money recovered from looters. He also accused Magu of gross insubordination, refusing directives from the commission’s supervisory ministry; and as a result, the Federal Government has come under severe attack and embarrassment on account of odium stemming from poorly pursued investigations. The AGF’s memo made strong innuendos purporting that Magu has made himself a willing tool in the hands of politicians thereby reducing the sterling reputation EFCC once enjoyed.

Sources at the presidency insisted on Friday that Buhari has indeed signed off on the memo only awaiting implementation.

“By the recommendation, Magu should be eased out of office, and prosecuted on the strength of the allegations made against him,” explained a presidency source to the newspaper, who said the president was livid after reading the memo.

Adding further, the sources said that had the matter rested squarely on just Malami’s memo, maybe a form of reprieve could have been worked out for the commission’s chairman.

“Malami was extensively debriefed on the matter. Security agencies were also involved in the matter and they all came back with damning verdicts,” the source added.

So far, the presidency has refused to say much on the matter.

In a text message response by Senior Special Assistant, Media and Publicity to the President, Mallam Garba Shehu, asking for confirmation on whether Magu will be eased out, the presidential spokesman simply said, “I don’t know the answer to your question.”

Several attempts at reaching Dele Oyewale, Head, Media and Publicity, EFCC, yielded no result as his phones continued ringing without the calls being picked up. However, another source within the commission told the newspaper that there cannot be any official response from EFCC unless matters are directed at them.

But as also learnt, Magu is said not to be leaving anything to chance. It was learnt that some of his backers with link at the Presidential Villa have been putting in words for the embattled anti-graft’s czar, telling Mr. President that Magu is being hounded by corrupt politicians.

One of the result of the alleged brokering resulted in Magu being seen at the Aso Rock mosque where he observed the Jumat with President Buhari.

As learnt, the EFCC boss was there to have an audience with the president.

It was, however, unclear if the mission succeeded as at the time of filing this report.

It would be recalled that in 2016, the Senate declined to confirm Magu’s appointment as EFCC chairman, citing a Department of State Services (DSS) report, which revealed unsavory activities. Despite the Senate’s rejection of Magu, President Buhari re-nominated him, but the Senate again rejected him.

Kwara State: EFCC Uncovers Additional 400 Ghost Workers In KWARA Work Force

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Friday, June 19, 2020 uncovered 400 fresh ghost workers in Kwara state.

At the Ilorin Zonal Office of the Commission, N31,000,000 (Thirty One Million Naira only), meant for the payment of salaries of the ghost workers, was allegedly shared by the Chairman, Nigerian Union of Teachers, NUT, Kwara State, Salihu Idris Toyin and the Permanent Secretary, State Universal Basic Education Board, SUBEB, Bayo Audu Onimago, among others.

Other beneficiaries of the money include, Director of Finance, SUBEB, Ahmed Husain, Coordinator, NUJ, Kwara State, Tijani Idris and Controller of Finance, SUBEB, Omole John.

In a confessional account of how the money was shared, Toyin told operatives of the EFCC that “A sum of N12million was paid into an account operated by me and others, the money was actually not supposed to come but when the cash hit the account, I withdrew it and gave it to SUBEB Officials, they gave us N3million for free and we shared it among ourselves.”

“We also received another N19million. I withdrew N4million from it, I used N1.5million for clearing and interlocking of our quarters, the remaining N2.5million is still with me”.

Toyin also said that the money he used for the clearing and interlocking of the quarters was not receipted.

It would be recalled that the EFCC, last week announced the uncovering of about 1000 ghost workers allegedly smuggled into the payroll of the Kwara State Universal Basic Education Board.

All the suspects would be charged to court as soon as investigations are concluded.