Magu appears before panel again

The suspended acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, has arrived at the Presidential villa for the continuation of the probe of corruption allegations against him. Magu arrived at the Old Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa, Abuja, venue of the ongoing investigation about 9am.

Last week, some EFCC officials appeared before the Justice Ayo Salami-led probe panel. Some of them will appear before the panel again today, while some directors and sectional heads were asked to return on Tuesday with relevant documents.  

Magu’s suspension

President Muhammadu Buhari had, on Friday, approved the suspension of Magu as Acting Chairman of the EFCC and appointed the agency’s Director of Operations, Mohammed Umar, to take charge and oversee the activities of the commission pending the conclusion of the ongoing investigation by the Presidential Investigative Panel.

The Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN) made the announcement on Friday. According to a statement by the media aide to the AGF, Dr Umar Gwandu, the approval is “in order to allow for unhindered inquiry by the Presidential Investigation Panel under the Tribunals of Inquiry Act and other relevant laws.”

The statement also added that President Buhari approved that Umar should take charge and oversee the activities of the commission pending the conclusion of the ongoing investigation and further directives in that regard.  

The Presidential Panel

President Buhari constituted the Justice Salami-led panel to probe various allegations levelled against Magu following petitions by Malami and the Department of State Service (DSS). Malami’s memo allegedly accused Magu of diversion of recovered loot. The memo was said to have contained 22 allegations against the embattled EFCC chairman.

Presidency breaks silence

The presidency had kept mute over the ongoing assignment of Justice Salami-led presidential panel until last Monday when the appearance of Magu in a controversial manner leaked the secrecy behind his probe.

However, the presidency on Saturday finally opened up on the reasons Magu was being investigated. A presidential media aide, Garba Shehu, in an official statement issued on the suspension of Magu, said a series of documented allegations were made against him.

Shehu said there were grounds for a detailed investigation to be conducted, following a preliminary review of the allegations leveled against Magu and several other members of his staff.

He said an investigative panel was therefore constituted in compliance with the extant laws governing the convening of such a body. Garba, who said Magu was being given an opportunity to defend himself, added that those insinuating that his probe signified the failure of the anti-corruption war had missed the point.

Source: Daily Trust