By Adenike Lucas
Another dimension of the acting chair of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission’s impunity and lopsided fight against internal corruption is extensively revealed in this write up by Adenike Lucas.
Over the past few months, an investigation by Adenike Lucas has unearthed worrying levels of corruption and plans by Mr Ibrahim Mustafa Magu of the EFCC to subvert the rules of the EFCC.
Mr Magu who spearheaded the suspension of some dedicated staff of the anti-graft agency that exposed the criminalities perpetrated by his predecessor, Mr Ibrahim Lamorde is silently quelling charges leveled against him by the Department of State Services.
Questions are now being asked about the integrity of the Borno born acting chair, following an indicting report against him by the Department of State Security (DSS). Concerns have also increased over his links to the arrested Air Commodore, Umar Muhammed (rtd).
Despite his pretences, an inside source at the EFCC previously exposed the close ties between the Air Force Commander and Mr Magu.
In a series of conversation held with Adenike Lucas, the EFCC whistle blower accused the National Security Adviser Babagana Monguno, known to be Mr Magu’s Godfather of embezzling troop allowance in the past. Mr Magu is said to be preventing several cases like this from being investigated.
Staff have had to dam all consequence in their decision to speak out over the intimidation and abusive methods being deplored by Mr Magu in his planned attempt of evading justice.
In one case of abuse of power, Mr Magu accused a female regular staff of hobnobbing with an ex-governor of a North Central State.
Onlookers at the Abuja office said Mr Magu, called: “her to his office and the next thing was to start accusing her of fraternizing with the said former Governor.
Apparently, this threat would never have been carried out on a seconded woman police officer talk more of a police man, but, “because of the internal injustice which Mr Magu had aligned with the path of Ibrahim Lamorde, here is what the regular staff gets.”
Over the past year, so many regular staff have been dismissed as a result of injustice. Many have gone to the National Industrial Court and got judgements for reinstatements. Only for the Police led EFCC to appeal such judgements. Many are still at the NIC for various wrongful dismissal of appointments. Most of which Mr Magu of EFCC is privy to, and partook in the impunity wholly.
Not only is Mr Magu suppressing vocal staff who speak against his corrupt leadership. He has also decided to punish allies of this regular staff for no reason.
Two sets of Regular Cadets of the EFCC had been due for promotion since two years ago, but Mr Magu has refused to get them moved to the next rank, neither did he allow for interview to be conducted.
Apparently, Mr Magu of EFCC has wade off any issue regarding the promotion of the regular staff of EFCC, without any rationale.
How on earth can a sincere, just, incorruptible and credible acting chair think in such a myopic manner? As at today, Mr Magu of EFCC has stagnated the promotion of the core staff of EFCC, while the seconded policemen keep receiving their due promotion from their mother organisation, the Nigeria Police, and making them have edge in terms of placement better than the bona fide staff of the anti-graft agency.
This was the same Magu of EFCC, who was returned to the police in 2008 by Mrs. Farida Waziri. Reasons being that he was alleged of hiding case files on investigated Ex-Governors, and other official documents. At that time, he was the Head of the Section, Economic Governance, in charge of Politically Exposed Persons cases.
Also, Magu was alleged to be divulging official information to Sahara Reporters and the pioneer Chair of the EFCC, Nuhu Ribadu whilst in Mrs Waziri’s regime. That was why, after she removed Magu from the agency, Sahara Reporters led an onslaught against Mrs. Waziri, till ex-President Goodluck Jonathan removed her.
This goes to show why the same Sahara Reporters is carrying out ‘Image laundering’ on his behalf, by trying to rubbish Director General DSS Lawal Daura, Chief of Staff Mr Abba Kyari, Minister of Interior Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau, Mamman Daura, COAS Gen. Tukur Buratai and others whom they see as exposing Mr Magu’s pseudo war against corruption.
In a nutshell, instead of proper leadership in the EFCC that will foster harmonious coexistence among various segments of staff, Mr Magu is encouraging ’empire building’ in the anti-graft agency by some policemen against the regular staff.
Among the impunities laid at Mr Magu’s door, is failure to investigate his ally such as CP Ibrahim Lamorde who is on AWOL at Nigeria Police, DCP Mohammed Wakili, CSP. Iliyasu Kwarbai, CSP. Ibrahim Yidi, ASP. Bashir Mua’azu, SP. Ishaku Sharu who is in charge of Arms Deal Investigation and others.
Mr Magu claims to be fighting corruption, if this is true, why is there no plan to investigate Mr Lamorde? Can Mr Magu look anyone in the face as he gives a reply to that question? Of course he cannot. Purposely, because they are all policemen, as you can see from their ranks. On the contrary, let a regular staff exchange pleasantry with an accused; I bet Magu may order that regular staff to be slaughtered. Is that not injustice and corruption, said the source.
A few staff have been suspended since December 2015, for speaking about corruption which led PMB to have sacked the former chair, Mr Ibrahim Lamorde. For this act, they were suspended by Mr Magu.
Senior staff at the Headquarters that had advised and told Magu it was wrong, were either removed or transferred from their job.
This staff who feel they are been witch hunted say: “efforts made by most top staff to call Mr Magu’s attention to this fact has fallen on deaf ears.”
For instance, a director of Legal Department who gave a professional advice to Mr Magu to back out of humiliating the whistle blowers, was removed from that department. Another scenario is a senior female staff who cautioned Mr Magu on the injustice against the whistle blowers, by suspending and denying them salaries for over six months now, was transferred to a State office of the agency to work under a junior seconded policeman.
A second source shed more light on the level of fraud in the anti-corruption agency being headed by Mr Magu and why certain high profile cases have stalled.
“So many impunity have been going on since the appointment of Mr Magu as acting chair of EFCC, yet no one is telling the President the truth about internal illegalities of Magu in EFCC,” the informant intoned.
The source continued: “But today, Mr Magu will tell the world and Nigerians that he is flushing out the bad eggs from the anti-graft agency. What he meant, most Nigerians do not know.”
This second EFCC source based in Lagos said: “corrupt police officers who are well known to have benefited from corrupt practices, in cases like subsidy investigations, pension investigations, and so many other politically exposed persons cases, were let off the hook by Magu when he started as acting chair of the anti-graft agency.
“Humiliating the regular staff of the agency, and freeing his policemen colleagues, who have made billions while on secondment at EFCC,” is also in the increase, added the informant.
Yet the regular staff of the agency are being messed up every day, and made to look like the dirty officers polluting the EFCC. This is not true, though there are a few bad eggs among staff of the agency. About 90% of the seconded policemen to EFCC, are more engulfed in internal corrupt practices, which Magu himself is fully aware, but had left them to go and enjoy their unexplainable ‘profane wealth.’
Anytime Mr Magu talks about corruption fighting back, it sounds ridiculous. To think that he is just trying to hoodwink gullible Nigerians who are already deceived by his perceived fight against corruption, and the President whom he feels he has succeeded in cajoling. PMB is more intelligent than what Magu thinks of the President.
“Today, it must be averred to the public that Mr Magu of EFCC is a desperate fraud. In his desperation, he authorised the anti-corruption Ambassador award to Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu, hoping that it would make factions of the NASS members happy with him.
In a previous conversation, a fearless informant called for the previous EFCC chair, Mr Lamorde to be investigated, if there is actual sincerity in Mr Magu’s corruption fight.
“Why would Mr Magu who has always said he will fight corruption till he dies not have investigated some of those seconded policemen, before sending them back to the police,” the source asked.
It should be noted that Mr Magu was never screened by the DSS and with an impending DSS report on the case of Air Commodore which will possibly indict Mr Magu, the President cannot afford to have such person leading an institution like the EFCC based on the ‘abracadabra’ exhibited so far.
I urge President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately withdraw the confirmation request for Mr Ibrahim Magu which was sent by the VP, Professor Yemi Osinbajo.
In my view, an armed robber cannot be tasked with the job of catching thieves.
Exclusively written by Adenike Lucas – 19/07/2016.
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