👤 By Adenike Lucas, Editor In Chief, EXCLUSIVE
Zakari Usman, a senior operative of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, who led a raid on the head office of a leading international banking group, must have gotten the backing of Ibrahim Mustafa Magu, informed sources say.
On Friday (September 14), a leading lawyer, Olasupo Shasore, said 20 EFCC agents were at Standard Chartered Bank HQ. The Senior Advocate of Nigeria said the operatives were there “to arrest MD Mrs Bola Adesola.”
Although the EFCC spokesperson Wilson Uwujaren slammed the raid, DENISAURUS News was reliably informed that the lead operative Mr Usman, who stormed the building with Junior operatives, was not working alone.
Sources who have in the past given exclusive exposé on the internal corruption at the anti-graft agency, said that an Assistant Commissioner of Police Akaninyene Ezima, who is the current director of operations at the Lagos zone, was not aware of the raid.
But having gotten backing from a “superior authority” in Abuja, Mr Usman carried out the “illegal” search with more than fifteen other operatives.
Sources familiar with the matter say the reason for the raid was to intimidate Mrs Adesola, the Managing Director of the bank, and to collect kickback on behalf of the “superior authority” based in Abuja.
Mr Usman, a known ally of Mr Magu, was posted to Abuja office over a year ago, but he refused to comply with the orders, DENISAURUS News understands.
The EFCC senior operative, this paper gathered, refused to comply and was allowed to remain in Lagos in order to continue to run illegal operations for Mr Magu, who was described as a “perennial offender.”
In the past, a media ally of this paper (The Pebbles News) had revealed that Mr Usman was being used as a conduit by EFCC’s Magu, for collecting kick back from corrupt individuals.
A staff reporter at the Pebbles News noted in 2017, that Mr Usman was living a lavish lifestyle, and living above means.
READ ALSO : EXPOSED : Magu Of EFCC Using Operatives For Kickback From PEPs
But when the attention of Magu of EFCC was called upon by Superior Officers, instead of ordering an investigation, the anti-graft boss dismissed the report and subsequently victimised the officers, who revealed how the operative was spending extravagantly at night clubs and other social event functions.
Investigation by our sister newspaper, shows that Magu of EFCC was fond of getting his lackey Operative entangled in all sort of criminal web, to make it easy for him to ‘blackmail’ them in the event the Officer (in this case Mr Usman) tries to expose him in future.
“That is Mr Magu’s game,” the source defiantly fired back at our reporter who was asking questions about the raid.
The police staff noted that at present, all those who partook in the bank raid at Lagos, have been detained by their boss, Mr Magu.
Our source revealed that in few days to come, the anti-graft boss would embark on media gimmicks, by way of sacrificing the operatives in order to gain public confidence and attract sympathy for being sabotaged.
DENISAURUS News also gathered from reliable sources that official queries have been issued to few among the Operatives.
Mr Magu of EFCC, we have learned, hardly gives directive to staff members in the formal public service communication means, which is written instructions via memos or minuting. Instead, the anti-graft boss is alleged to rather give instructions verbally, to have an alibi or justification to deny in the event of any backlash, hence sacrifice Operatives.
In 2016, Mr Suleiman Bakari, an EFCC Operative and NASS Liaison officer, decorated the Deputy Senate President, Mr Ike Ekweremadu, as “Anti-Corruption Ambassador.”
But Mr Magu, whose nomination as fourth chairman of the Commission was rejected by the Senate, due to an indicting report from the Department of State Security Service, DSS later denied Mr Bakare, alluding he acted without formal authorisation, a claim that many staff called this paper to refute.
They say this “operation at Standard Chartered Bank has the handwriting of the EFCC boss.”
Efforts were made to speak with Mr Uwujaren, but at the time of filing this report, he did not respond to inquiries on the new information gathered from staff about the bank raid.