👤 Exclusive By: Adenike Lucas and Danjuma Aliyu
A major corruption racketeering perpetuated by Ibrahim Mustafa Magu, the acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has been uncovered by DENISAURUS Newspaper.
Mr Magu’s nomination was rejected by the Senate after he was indicted for corruption by the Department of State Security Services, DSS.
This paper had exclusively reported many allegations made against Mr Magu by his subordinate at the agency. This allegations were confirmed in the indicting report.
Described as a perennial offender, Mr Magu was said to be attracted to the perks of office and would eventually constitute as a “liability to the fight against corruption.”
According to the secret police, the 53-year-old corrupt officer can never change.
The latest case of bribery pegged on EFCC’s Magu is $80 million bribe collected from the concubine of the late High Chief Olu Benson Lulu-Briggs in return for the abrupt closure of an ongoing investigation.
Those familiar with operations at the anti-graft agency, explained that this case is a typical example of why there has been no serious convictions.
Insiders say the fight against corruption may have received rejuvenated attention under the administration of President Buhari, owing largely to the persona which precedes the former Major General before 2015 election. But the three years of stay in office may have dispelled the notion of the former General being a valiant fighter against corruption. This is due in part to the weakened EFCC under the leadership of Mr Magu.
According to the concerned source, most critical cases are settled behind the scenes away from the viewing lens of the media or federal government.
DENISAURUS News sources within the EFCC reveal that bribery may have become the protocol inside the foremost anti-graft agency, and largely carried out by the lackeys and Man-Fridays of the “corrupt” Borno state born Police Officer.
Explaining further, the staff, stated that Lulu-Briggs was a revered Nigerian statesman. “He is the founder and chairman of Moni Pulo Limited, an oil exploration and production company. Moni Pulo was awarded its first oil block in 1992 when the Nigerian president at the time, Ibrahim Babangida, was encouraging indigenous participation in the upstream sector of the oil and gas industry. The company currently has oil blocks in Ondo state, Abia and Akwa-Ibom state.
“The family of the late Lulu Briggs through his widow, Dr (Mrs) Seinye Lulu-Briggs had petitioned the EFCC over crude oil documents left in the possession of late Chief Lulu Briggs’ concubine following his demise. The crude oil documents and content reportedly is worth over $800million.
“Mrs Lulu Briggs, in her petition, demanded for the crude oil documents belonging to her late husband be returned and/or handed over to the Briggs family. The petition was submitted to the EFCC in mid 2017.”
Documents available to DENISAURUS News, revealed that the said crude oil documents were for OML 114, supposedly purchased and/or transferred from Baker Hughes in 2003 to Rachael Holdings Limited, a company wholly owned by late Chief Olu Lulu Briggs. The transfer was consummated by the then oil minister. Baker Hughes had made the purchased in the early 1990s under the Abacha regime.
Upon Lulu Briggs death, his lady concubine confiscated the crude oil documents and held on to them refusing to release them to the family of Lulu Briggs.
Following the receipt of Mrs Lulu Briggs’ petition, the EFCC investigating team launched a fact finding on the allegations, and quickly gathered that indeed the concubine was in possession of the said crude oil documents.
The investigating team attempted to resolve the matter amicably within the EFCC – by suggesting the concubine to settle the Briggs family with $100million. The concubine initially agreed.
But in the long run, the concubine suddenly became uncooperative – having gotten a direct link and access to Mr Magu. Both the anti-graft boss and the concubine opened secret talks, DENISAURUS News gathered.
They were able to settle for a 10 percent agreement of the total money involved, $800million. This paper gathered that Mr Magu had wanted $150million but he settled for $80million. The concubine remitted the money to Mr Magu.
Except from one media outfit, there has been no report of this issue. DENISAURUS News understands that there have been many attempt to keep this news away from the press.
The acting chair ensured the case stayed off the pages of newspapers, while settlement was ongoing. According to our source, “ they will never invite the press to cover this kind of case. Mr Magu knows that once it gets into the press, it would be hard to agree on such bargain.”
DENISAURUS News learned that “the case, despite being high profile, Magu of EFCC who is known for blackmail using “media trial,” never allowed the case get to the public court. This is due to his earlier negotiation and Self-aggrandisement expectations. ”
EFCC sources say this case was in blatant breach of the EFCC regulation 2010, which Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, SAN had often accused the anti-graft boss of flouting.
Unfortunately, the unveiling bombshell is mind boggling! The said Lulu Briggs case does not have any criminal undertone from the onset, DENISAURUS News learned. However, Mr Magu knew this but capitalised on the gullibility of the family to enrich himself from a civil matter, contrary to being criminal case that falls within the purview of the EFCC.
The anti-graft boss left the late Chief Lulu Briggs Family in pain and agony, having cut-deal with the concubine to sabotage the entire case.
Through the ferocious exposé by some courageous EFCC staff members, President Mohammadu Buhari was said to have been aware of the $80million bribery. Mr Magu, according to our source, made a hurried attempt at visiting the President on August 19 2017, after return from medical leave. But the President denied him audience.
“The anti-graft boss was packaged in an office for over one hour and profiled. Mr Magu was later sent away, as President Buhari would not meet him, after the so many glaring allegations and corroborating evidence from DSS report ”.
DENISAURUS News source continued: “Do you know that in 2008, late President Umaru Yar’adua informed his SA Media and Publicity, Olusegun Adeniyi, how Magu of EFCC was apprehended with blackmailing documents he used to furnish SaharaReporters, alleging Umaru Yar’adua was a ‘thief-thief and weakling, whom Turai Yar’adua was using as a football.”
This Newspaper also gathered that the managerial staff at the EFCC comprising mainly of those who may have not benefited, conducted an internal investigation, and confirmed that Mr Magu actually collected the bribe. But the subordinates were handicapped on what actions to take.
“What do you expect subordinate in Law Enforcement Agencies to do with dirty deals and secret they discovered on their boss (Mr Magu). Protest or go to strike? unheard of, you know!”
DSS Report had revealed that EFCC’s Magu is a “perennial offender” and would be a “liability on anti-graft war.” Meanwhile, this wasn’t far from a 2010 report by AIG Perry Osayande’s Panel, which investigated Mr Magu, and reported that he is “smartly corrupt” and can not be trusted with ‘Money and Power’.
Staff members revealed that High Profile Cases are “media-propagated” for President Buhari to assume that the EFCC Boss is working hard. The truth as we gathered is that, some of these cases are only on paper, nothing is done to move them to conclusiveness by Mr Magu.
DENISAURUS News gathered that agitations are increasing by the day, as staff members are worried about the continuous stay of their boss, despite factual evidence and revelation from the DSS in October 2016.
They have urged President Buhari to act and not allow a final ruin of the EFCC, under his administration, with the perpetual stay-put of Mr Magu despite rejection by senior lawmakers of the National Assembly.
Mr Magu has just been announced promoted to the rank of Commissioner of police, by the Police Service Commission.
The endless scandal plaguing Mr Magu has left many with questions about his promotion and those backing him.
Staff members say that now that their boss has accepted his promotion, he should proceed for the mandatory course at National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, NIPSS.
They say they are worried that the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo is being protective of EFCC’s Magu “stay-put” at anti-graft agency.
In their opinion, the corruption racketeering perpetrated by Mr Magu is abetted with the connivance of three self- acclaimed legal luminaries.
Nigeria’s VP, and two other Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SANs, Professor Itse Sagay and Femi Falana have given much backing to Mr Magu for their own selfish reasons.
Despite, an indicting report against the corrupt EFCC boss, Pastor Professor Osinbajo, has ensured he stays in office.
DENISAURUS News have been privy to some dirty dealings by the trio, in guiding, abetting and ensuring that while Mr Magu indulges in corruption, impunity and blackmailing activities, the arm of the law does not catch up with him.
Recently, this newspaper was reliably informed on how Prof Itse Sagay and EFCC’s Magu had in 2017, engaged in blackmailing activities against some Heads Of Ministries, Department and Agencies, MDAs.
Chief in their racketeering was the receipt of an alleged sum of $10m from the leadership of McArthur Foundation.