The suspended Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ibrahim Magu, has dealt a blow to the Nigerian Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, by accusing him of always interfering in investigations of the authority and cooperating with others to deprive them of their legal powers.
Magu said in a 44-page document entitled "DR: Alleged case of conspiratorial enrichment, abuse of public office and other violations", written to the presidential judicial panel headed by Ayo Salami, which was investigating allegations of corruption against him, that the allegations made against him were false and were intended to tarnish his image and the credibility of the EFCC.
The 58-year-old man, who was released on Wednesday after 10 days of detention in Abuja on July 6 by a combined team of foreign ministry and police officials to answer questions from the group, said the entire saga was a well-planned plot by his traitors to incriminate him for exposing high-level corruption.
He said: "In several cases where he was being investigated, in the recovery and management of assets, the AGF office either interfered in the process or was less cooperative and supportive.
"Also the lax approach of the AGF office, especially in extradition cases, was not helpful.
"Instead of strengthening the institutional capacity of the Commission and the provisions of section 17 of the Advance Rights and Other Fraud-related Offences Act 2006, the Commission and its enabling statutes were subjected to numerous attacks and blackmail, mainly in order to reduce the powers of the Commission.
The "Asset Tracing, Recovery and Management Regulations 2019", which were adopted by the AGF without the intervention of the National Assembly, are intended to relieve the Commission of its legal powers to detect, recover and initiate judicial forfeiture proceedings on the basis of lack of convictions.
As part of the ongoing investigation into the agency's activities under Magu, the Presidency on Tuesday suspended 12 directors of the EFCC, including those investigating the alleged corruption in Malami.
Malami had sent a letter to the current chairman of the EFCC, Mohammed Umar, on Tuesday, informing him of the suspension of the directors.
"These staff members were never questioned or questioned until their suspension on Tuesday," a source said.
Observers of the events say influential figures such as Malami cannot be ignored if the anti-corruption campaign of President Muhammadu Buhari's government is to make sense to the population.
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