Since the death of President Buhari's Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari, it appears that hell had been let loose within The Presidency. From the ignominious shooting within the Villa, to the ridiculous allegations being traded between Godswill Akpabio and Dr Joi Nunieh, and even the recent Malami Versus Ibrahim Magu debacle, the Presidency hasn't had it smooth by any stretch of imagination.
Yesterday, Magu’s lawyers outrightly debunked most of what we had been told about his client being grilled by the presidential Probe Panel headed by Justice Ayo Salami. Probably buoyed by his own presumption of Magu’s ‘innocence’, Mr Wahab Shittu went ahead to enthuse about the high likelihood that Magu would be reinstated as EFCC boss.
Probably, yet unsatisfied with the potential of being absolved of all allegations, it now appears that Ibrahim Magu has launched the process of turning the tides against his traducers. With Magu’s apparent new found confidence, there’s a slight probability that one day, and perhaps very soon, ‘the bushmeat go catch the hunter’.
In a new 44-page letter to the Presidential Probe Panel, Ibrahim Magu accused Nigeria‘s Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami of always interfering with probes being carried out by the EFCC. He also gave us clues that could make us understand why he believes the AGF accused him of insubordination.
As quoted by Saharareporters, parts of Magu’s 44 page document (titled: "RD: Alleged Case Of Conspiracy, Enrichment, abuse Of Public Office, And Other Infractions") read:
"In several cases under investigation, recovery and management of assets, the office of the AGF has (had) either interfered with the process or has been less cooperative and supportive... Also, the laid back approach of the office of the AGF in particular cases of extradition has (had) not been helpful...
The Asset Tracing, Recovery and Management Regulations, 2019, made by the AGF without the intervention of the National Assembly, seeks to divest the Commission of its statutory powers to trace, recover and institute non-convictions based proceedings in court."
In summary, Ibrahim Magu is alleging that Abubakar Malami as AGF, wants to be the one who decides who is convicted by the EFCC. That he also wants the final say on who and which property is seized or released by the anti-graft agency. If you ask me, that is something very serious to allege.
If President Buhari is as concerned and committed to the fight against corruption as being touted, then, Magu might be able to achieve a level of retribution against Abubakar Malami, a somewhat controversial figure to many. There are already prominent Nigerians calling for the searchlight to be beamed on the AGF’s office, even before Magu’s new allegations against Malami.
President Buhari recently charged security and other agencies to ensure that the truth is revealed regarding what's going on at the NDDC. Whether that charge will eventually apply to the office of the AGF, in the light of Ibrahim Magu’s counter-allegations, remains to be seen.
As things stand now, it's impossible to state categorically, who has been truthful between Magu and Malami. In Nigerian politics, ‘the more you look, the less you see’. This is because, throughout the almost two weeks when Ibrahim Magu was held in detention, all sorts of reports, or rumors were flying about, that Magu couldn't provide satisfactory answers to allegations thrown against him.
However when Magu was eventually released on Wednesday, after a 10-days, ‘morning to night interrogations’, his lawyers, through Wahab Shittu, made it clear that he hadn't appeared before the probe Panel since Thursday last week. This probably hints that Magu’s accusers probably knew that they didn't have enough evidence to nail him, hence, they wanted to rubbish his reputation and ensure that he is removed from the EFCC permanently.
It's instructive to also point out that, the fact that there's no evidence of a crime doesn't mean a crime wasn't committed. Magu is a lawyer by trade, note that he also has his personal lawyers advising him. That means if he decides to commit a crime, he probably knows how to do so without a trace.
Now that Magu has made a counter allegation against the office of The AGF, how can we tell if Magu’s allegations hold any substance. The whole drama is complicated by the fact that President Buhari's style of leadership cannot actually be described as hands-on approach. If it were, two top officials within his administration wouldn't be making totally contradictory statements, for fear of the potential consequences.
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