President Muhammadu Buhari is said to have succumbed to pressure on the call to sack and prosecute Ibrahim Magu, the embattled acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)
Sources close to the presidency informed THE WITNESS that the president has set up a panel to investigate several allegations of corruption and abuse of office leveled against the EFCC boss who is one of the kinsmen of Abba Kyari, the late chief of staff to the president.
One of the sources, however, divulged that Magu’s fate lies on the report of the panel led by the new chief of staff to the president, Professor Ibrahim Gambari. The president who is said to be embittered with the allegations has also directed that the EFCC boss be made to face the law if found culpable.
The source also disclosed that the panel probing the allegations against Magu is expected to submit its report in two weeks.
Recall, the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami (SAN), in a memo to the president, had listed 22 offences allegedly committed by Magu, for which he should be sacked.
Reacting to the memo, the Peoples Democratic Party in a statement by its national publicity secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, said the development further “exposed the abysmal corruption, deception and hypocrisy that pervade the Buhari administration.”
The party asserted that it was the worst national embarrassment in the history of Nigeria, that the head of the anti-corruption agency in an administration that prided itself on zero tolerance for corruption, was being dragged on allegation of diversion of recovered funds and fraudulent sale of assets seized by the agency.
According to the PDP: “The world can now see that the much hyped anti-corruption fight of the Buhari administration, has been nothing but a huge fraud and a racket by certain persons in the APC administration to harass political opponents, intimidate and extort money from innocent Nigerians and steal public funds.
“Nigerians and the world have further seen why corruption has worsened under the Buhari administration, as copiously documented by credible international organization, including the Transparency International (TI).
“Instead, Mr. President had continued to run a system that condones corrupt practices by officials of his administration while providing cover for individuals indicted for corruption including those who are now serving as cabinet ministers and other federal appointees in his government,” the statement read in part.
It also called on Magu to immediately step aside and submit himself for an independent investigation in order to clear his name.
Magu was appointed by the President on November 9, 2015 subject to confirmation by the Senate. But he has remained in acting capacity since then.
He was rejected twice by the 8th Senate, under the leadership of Dr Bukola Saraki, based on a security report by the Department of State Services. He, however, remained in office.
Magu is expected to retire from the police force in less than two years from now.