Anti-Graft War: EFCC Recovers N794bn In 3 Years, Says Magu

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has announced that it has recovered N794 billion from looters of the nation’s treasury.

Also, the anti-graft agency said over $261 million,  8.1 millions euros and 1.1 million Pound Sterling had been  recovered from corrupt Nigerians.

Chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu,  disclosed this, on Wednesday,  when he spoke  at a corruption symposium organised by the Rivers Unity House, in Port Harcourt,  Rivers State.

Magu, who was represented by the  Commission’s Head of Operations, Usman Muktar,  informed that the anti-graft czar had secured 703 conviction.

According to him, the feat was recorded between 2015 till date  when the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government came on board.

Magu said, “It is on record that about 90 percent of all the recovery in Nigeria is through the EFCC.

“Between November 2015 till date, we have recovered over N794 billion; we have recovered over 261 million dollars.

“The pounds sterling recovered stand 1,115, 930 million. Euros recovered within the period under review is 8,168,871.13?.

He added that hundreds of property such as filing stations, petroleum products, landed property, jewelries,  automobiles, and  many others,  have been recovered from corrupt Nigerians.

Speaking further, he said, “The EFCC added that 407 mansions were also seized by the Commission and 126 were forfeited finally to the Federal Government, while 281 are under forfeiture.

“We have been able to secure conviction between 2015 and 2018. We have been able to secure 703 convictions.

“The breakdown is as follows: in 2015, we have 103 convictions; in 2016, we have 194 convictions; in 2017, 189 convictions.”

SUN

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2019: EFCC Chairman Ibrahim Magu Vows To Monitor Campaign Funds

Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Ibrahim Magu has disclosed that the anti-graft agency would monitor campaign funds donated to political parties for the 2019 elections as well as donors’ identities.

Magu stated this on Wednesday while presenting a paper at a one-day retreat for the 36 state governors and key election stakeholders.

Represented by Olanipekun Olukoyede, his chief of staff, the EFCC chairman said the agency would not allow public funds to be diverted to fund political campaigns. He said politicians are required to keep proper records of all donations received by them, including the identities of the donors and be ready to show relevant security agencies at the end of the election.

“We shall keenly monitor the financial affairs of political parties to ensure that the use of public funds to finance political parties and prosecute campaigns at all levels of government is checked.

“To minimise corruption and the use of public funds to fund political parties and finance elections, there is need for greater effectiveness in enforcing the provisions of the various electoral laws in Nigeria, especially as it relates to penalties upon breach of their provisions.

“Political parties should be required to keep proper records of all incomes, contributions and expenditure, and to open their books for inspection by relevant security agencies after every electioneering cycle.

“In addition, politicians prosecuting campaigns must be required to keep proper records of all donations received by them, including the identities of the donors; and to turn their books over to relevant security agencies, and to INEC for inspection after every electioneering cycle, including the costs of litigations arising from the elections and the source of funding for the litigations.

“We do not have the manpower and other resources to confront this hydra headed monster alone. I implore fellow Nigerians to share credible intelligence with the commission on the activities of criminal politicians, so that our tasks can be made easier,” he said.

Magu said anytime money is diverted by an administration to fund an election campaign, it is money being appropriated for health, security, education, road construction, personnel costs and other amenities for the citizens.

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EFCC Secures Over 150 Convictions In 2018

The Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, has disclosed that over 150 convictions have been secured by the commission in the last eight months.

Magu said this on Monday during a stakeholders’ meeting with religious leaders, labour unions, and traders associations at the South West Zonal Office of the commission in Iyaganku, Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.

He called on individuals at the meeting to embrace the fight against corruption and urged them not to glorify corrupt leaders.

“This is a stakeholders’ summit because the fight against corruption affects all of us. Everybody in Nigeria is a stakeholder. Nigerians must take ownership of the fight against corruption.

“The number of convictions alone this year, I think we have about over 150 as at July.

“Corruption fight is not something you leave to only anti-corruption agencies. We can see that if Nigerians join in the fight against corruption, we have a longer and wider reach. The looting must stop. We should not glorify the corrupt; we should not appreciate the corrupt,” he said.

Magu also exonerated the commission of partisanship, noting that the EFCC has always made the general interest of the Nigerian populace arrowhead of its operation.

He also urged Nigerians to be transparent in the business activities they are engaged.

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Saraki Restates Commitment To Fighting Corruption

Senate President Bukola Saraki, has said the war against corruption should be everybody’s business and not one that should be taken personal.

Saraki said this on Tuesday during his visit to the N24billion newly completed office complex of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) which Saraki inspected for about 40 minutes.

Recall that the Senate, under the leadership of Saraki, twice rejected Ibrahim Magu as the substantive head of the anti-graft agency.

The Senate President is also facing trial over alleged false assets declaration.

“My presence here is to say that whatever we do in our job, the most important thing is that we all represent institutions and we must work and see that it is in the interest of the country,” Saraki said.

He added: “I think we have all said it. It is something we must fight. There is no way you can build a society without fighting corruption.

“I have always said that my own strong will is that as we fight it, we must fight it in ensuring that we strengthen the institutions and what you see here is part of the process of strengthening those institutions so that whoever comes here will know that this is what we must fight if we want to build institutions.

“I think it (project) has gone through about three executive chairmen and one did not come in to say this is not my project and I must not continue. Each one has taken it as his own project.  I think that is good and that is the whole point that is important and this is something we will be proud of for many years.

“In many years to come, I hope that we don’t have corruption in an environment like this but for now, I think there are many good aspects of this. Having a Nigerian that designed this, the details are very impressive-  the clinic  and all the facilities- and the fact that it has gone through three different administration and the fact that the National Assembly has played its role and brought it to completion, I think that it is a lot of plus.”

 

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Magu Is The Right Man For The Job, Says Vice President Osinbajo

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, (SAN), has reiterated that the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Ibrahim Magu is the right man to head the commission.

Osinbajo, in an interview with selected press men stated that although the Senate are entitled to take some of the positions they are taking but President Muhammadu Buhari  believes that this is the right man for the job.

“The DG of the State Security Service, upon the request by the Senate, wrote a security report and sent it, yet it is up to the President to decide whether he’s going to present this candidate. Interfering with the process of a security report is not leadership, that’s obstructing. He is not supposed to interfere. If you say, “Send your report”, whatever report you want to send, the man defends himself, and we still believe he is the right person for the job. That is the position that we took when he was presented the second time,” Osinbajo said.

Equally, the Vice President further mentioned that the President “has said that the EFCC has the absolute right to go ahead and do whatever it needs to do to ensure that anybody who has committed a crime, or who is suspected to having committed a crime, is brought to justice, and that’s the position that the EFCC has taken.”

“To ensure that you allow government agency do their business, that’s very important; that’s institution building.  Look at what is happening in the US today; the President is sometimes angry with the FBI because the FBI is doing its independent work, and that’s what we hope to achieve: when you see countries where agencies are doing their work the way they are supposed to do it,” he added.

 

 

 

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Senate’s Decision Not To Confirm Me As Substantive Chairman Of EFCC Shows I’m Working, Says Magu

Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Ibrahim Magu, has said that Senate’s decision not to confirm him as the substantive chairman of the Commission shows that he is working.

Magu said this during an interview on a programme on Channels Television titled, ‘Question Mark.’

When asked if he was not demoralised by the Senate’s refusal to confirm him, Magu said, “I don’t think so. In fact, I feel a lot of encouragement. The fact that I am not confirmed shows that I am working. In the anti-corruption environment, if they rush to confirm you, it means you are not really doing your work properly.”

When asked why he was the first person to head the commission in acting capacity for such a long time, he said, “There are many people we are investigating who are members of the National Assembly.”

Magu also rubbished reports that he was not confirmed because of the report from the Department of State Services.

He said, “I am not distracted. Rather, it pushes me; I am encouraged.”

 

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EFCC Recovered Over N473bn, $98million, €7million, £294,000 In 2017, Says Magu

Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, on Monday, disclosed details of recovered assets to lawmakers in Abuja.

Magu, who appeared before a budget defence session convened by the House of Representatives Committee on Financial Crimes said that the commission has retrieved over N473billion in 2017.

While briefing the lawmakers on the performance of the 2017 Budget of the anti-graft agency, as well as its budget for 2018, Magu added that N473billion, $98million, €7million, and £294,000 among others were recovered from alleged looters.

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Magu’s Confirmation: Court Affirms Senate’s Authority To Accept Or Reject Persons Into Office

A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has affirmed Nigerian Senate’s authority to accept or reject candidate into office.

This judgement follows a suit challenging the Senate’s authority to deny an appointee to the office of Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) under the EFCC Act.

The Court in its ruling said that “the Senate is conferred with the authority to ensure the choice of “only suitable and credible persons for appointment to the office”.

The court further held that any impression that the Senate is a rubber stamp of Presidential appointees is misconceived and running contrary to Section 2(3) of the EFCC Act.

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Magu Charges Corp Members To Shun Corruption And Criminality

The Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes  Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, has charged members of the National Youth Service Corp, NYSC, to shun corruption and all forms of criminality.
Magu made the call on, January 24, 2018 during a lecture at the NYSC orientation camp in Issele Ukwu, Delta State.
Speaking on the topic, “The Role of Youths In Curbing Corruption”, Magu who was represented by Williams Oseghale of the Public Affairs Directorate, Benin Zonal Office, said there was no short cut to success only hard work in legitimate activities.
His words:  “Shun Corruption and Criminality because if you are caught, the consequences are grave. Acts of criminality might deliver wealth in the short run but ultimately there will be misery and gnashing of teeth.”
He urged the corps members to take ownership of the fight against corruption and become agent of change in their area of primary assignment.
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Whistle Blowing: How Magu Illegally Suspended Five EFCC Operatives For Over 24 Months 

Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Ibrahim Magu, has been nailed in another controversial suspension and demotion of five operatives of the commission for allegedly exposing corrupt practices perpetuated by the immediate past Chairman, Ibrahim Lamorde and himself.

Recall that in November 2015, erstwhile EFCC Boss, Ibrahim Lamorde, was removed from office and was instructed to hand over to Mr Magu, who he had worked closely with while at the Commission.

Abusidiqu gathered that the suspended whistleblowers played leading role in Lamorde’s removal from office. This however did not go down well with Magu, whom in loyalty to his ex-boss – Lamorde, ordered the immediate suspension of the operatives.

 

To keep the suspecting eyes of the public from the illegal suspension of the operatives, Magu, reportedly engaged some media organizations to play the narrative that the suspended operatives had overstayed their stipulated secondment years.

A memo with reference number EFCC/P/HR/ confirmed that an investigation was logged at the Federal Civil Service Commission (FCSC), against the suspended operatives. Mr Magu’s request to the FCSC, seeking their help on how to unjustly indict the operatives failed. Abusidiqu gathered that Mr Magu was advised by the FCSC to immediately recall the operatives. Till date, the anti-graft boss has lent deaf ears to all counseling regarding the illegal suspension.

In another effort to further subject the suspended operatives to even more unpalatable conditions, an insider revealed that Mr Magu went as far as taking their phones abroad, for a forensic analysis. The aim was to ensure that something incriminating is found and used by the anti-graft boss to tarnish the image of the operatives.

Additionally, Mr Magu proceeded to the Presidency with a false narration, claiming that the said operatives were involved in “espionage,” in order to paint a demeaning picture of the Federal Government, but was reportedly ignored by the Presidency.

Despite efforts made by an Appointment, Promotion And Disciplinary Committee (APDC), to call the anti-graft boss to order, the suspended operatives have been subjected to untold hardship as Magu single handedly stopped all the salaries and allowances of the operatives.

In related development, Mr Magu broke the commission’s rule by reshuffling Directors in various Departments with a clear mission to commit them to the misdemeanor he had long subjected the suspended operatives to. Mostly affected are the APDC members who were teleguided on what actions to initiate by the anti-graft boss.

After much pressure on Mr Magu to backtrack on his actions, the APDC, under the strict order of the anti-graft boss, were instructed to alter its earlier report, which exonerated the operatives from any infraction or crime. The APDC then wrote the operatives reinstating them on the condition that they will forfeit all entitlements during the period of their suspension, tender a letter of apology on the said publications to the Acting Chairman, swear to an oath of secrecy, accept that they have been downgraded, write an undertaken to be of good conduct, and accept that they shall be deployed.

As far as we know, it appears some other staff members may be suffering similar fate as these illegally suspended five operatives who took the bold stand to expose internal corruption within the commission. Mr Magu, allegedly orchestrated the removal of a Senior Management Director (name withheld), from service over fears that he may be appointed to head the commission. The fate of this Senior Director remains unclear. But he has taken the acting EFCC chairman and the commission to the Industrial court on the grounds of unlawful suspension and demotion.

While these conditions may have been turned down by the operatives, staff members of the anti-graft commission are increasingly losing their morale to key into the commission’s’ goal to nip corruption in the bud as whoever is not in good term with Mr. Magu or found exposing rot within the agency faces intimidation and force eviction from office.

The proclamation of the whistle blowing policy has no doubt helped the EFCC in recovering looted funds which includes $9,000,000.00, traced to a former Group Managing Director (GMD) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC); N49,000,000.00 cash discovered at the Kaduna Airport, another stash cash of about N500,000,000.00 discovered at a shopping plaza in Lagos, and the $43,000,000.00 discovered in Ikoyi, area of Lagos, but this same policy has been used unjustly victimise the five operatives who exposed certain corruption in the EFCC. In spite of Magu’s anti-corruption war, it has however become a taboo for EFCC staff to use same instrument to expose wrong doings of the anti-graft boss.

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EFCC Director, Olowonihi, Sues Magu, Commission over Suspension, Demotion – ThisDay

A Director and Former Commander of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Academy, Mr. Ayo Peter Olowonihi, has dragged the commission before the National Industrial Court in Abuja for wrongful suspension and demotion.

In the suit filed by Professor JO Amupitan, pursuant to Order 3 Rule 16 of the NIC Rules, 2016, Olowonihi wants the court to determine whether the commission’s staff regulation handbook titled: ‘EFCC Staff Regulation Handbook’ 2007 under which he was allegedly suspended and reinstated conditionally was valid same having not been approved by the commission as required by section 8(2) of the EFCC (Establishment) Act, 2004?

In the affidavit in support of his origination summons, the plaintiff who had worked in various capacities and under all the chairmen of the commission without blemish narrated his ordeal in the hands of the incumbent Acting Chairman of Commission, Ibrahim Magu. 

The plaintiff stated that as soon as Magu was appointed in November 2015 he was summoned and accused of being behind some online publications in respect of the activities of the commission and Magu.

He added that on the directive of Magu, he was taken to the Statement Room where he was made to write a 10-page statement under caution like a suspect and in the absence of his lawyer despite being a management staff on Grade Level 17 in the commission.

The plaintiff alleged that in the course of taking his statement, the lead investigator, Mr. Yahaya Bello, told him that he was being questioned because those online publications were in furtherance of his ambition to be appointed as the chairman of the commission and that the publications were to run down the acting executive chairman.

He further averred that on the order of Magu, his official table top computer was taken away, his two phones MTN (08033485511) and GLO (08055066583) were seized and his office was thoroughly searched by a team of detectives and policemen and sealed up, adding that the search conducted showed that there was nothing linking him with the publications.

He added that his official car was also withdrawn on the directive of the acting chairman who also ordered a forensic investigation on all his electronic devises including his bank account and email addresses and nothing incriminating was found against him.

The plaintiff said while interrogation was going on, Magu demoted him as commandant and ordered for his redeployment from EFCC Academy to his office.

“On November 20, 2015, I also received a letter dated  November 20, 2015 from the defendant signed by one Aliyu Nadada intimating me of my redeployment as commandant of the defendant’s Training Institute to the office of the acting Executive Chairman with immediate effect with a directive that I should handover to the next most senior officer. 

“That although the letter of deployment was purported to have been issued by the management of the defendant, I am not aware of such management meeting as a management staff as the redeployment was based purely on the directive of the acting Executive Chairman.

“On December 22, 2015, I also received a query titled ‘Offence Against Discipline’ for contravening certain sections of the Defendant’s Staff Regulation Handbook.  On December 23, 2015, I promptly responded to the query wherein I denied the allegations of any ‘Offence Against Discipline’ and even stated that when I saw some of the online publications, I reported it at one of the management meetings of the defendant and the matter was dismissed as inconsequential.

“On December 29, 2015 when my response was submitted, I got a letter of indefinite suspension from work without pay with immediate effect. I was allegedly queried under the EFCC Staff Regulation Handbook, my suspension was made in furtherance of Article 030406 of the Public Service Rules. The suspension was made pending the outcome of the matter.

“It is over two years now that I was suspended without salary and I have found it difficult to meet up my responsibilities including payment of school fees of my children, my house mortgage and other responsibilities. Since I was placed on suspension, I was not invited to appear before any panel nor was there any communication to me until November 16, 2017 when I was served with a Letter of Reinstatement dated  November 15, 2017 demoting me and forfeiting my salaries and emoluments.

“In the said Letter of Reinstatement, I was alleged to have been found guilty of a case of “Breach of Confidence” by the Senior Staff, Promotions and Disciplinary Committee of the defendant on September 28, 2017. I was not at any time confronted by the defendant of any allegation of ‘Breach of Confidence’. I was not invited by the Senior Staff, Promotions and Disciplinary Committee of the defendant to defend myself against any allegation of ‘Breach of Confidence’ or of any other misconduct for that matter.

 

“Even the Senior Staff, Promotions and Disciplinary Committee only has power to try officer below Level 13 and below and not my cadre Level 17 which is the bar and the prerogative of the commission. The power to discipline me is vested on the Commission which has not been constituted and not the acting Executive Chairman of the defendant or the Senior Staff, Promotions and Disciplinary Committee.

“The acting Executive Chairman of the defendant in this case is the accuser, investigator and judge because even in the course of investigation, he had ordered my removal as the commandant of the defendant’s Training Academy and posted to his office without any designation and schedule of duty.

“I know as a fact that under the Public Service Rules, a staff who is suspended and even indicted is placed on half salary and if reinstated is paid the other half of the salary withheld. There is no provision under the Public Service Rule or under any other Rule that governs my condition of service where a staff’s salary is withheld in full during a period of suspension.

“My suspension without pay was meant to punish me and an act of vendetta. Since 2005 when I was employed by the Defendant as the Head of Training, I had worked with four different Chairmen: Mr Nuhu Ribadu, the pioneer Chairman, Mrs Farida Waziri, Mr Ibrahim Lamorde and the current Chairman, Mr Ibrahim Magu. I have not had any problem with any of the chairman except the present chairman who has greatly humiliated me and my family.”

Among other consideration, the plaintiff wants the court to determine whether the whole process of exercising disciplinary procedure over him by the EFCC acting executive chairman beginning with the letter of query dated December 22, 2015,  the notification of suspension dated December 29, 2015 and the letter of reinstatement dated  November 15, 2017 were not a gross violation of his  right to fair hearing under section 36 of the Constitution of Nigeria, 1999 as amended?

The plaintiff therefore wants the court to set aside the letter of reinstatement dated November 15, 2017 conditionally reinstating him to his job on the ground that it is invalid, null and void.

He equally wants the court to set aside the letter of query dated December 22, 2015 and the notification of suspension dated December 29, 2015; and unconditionally restoring him to his position and office as the commandant of the EFCC Academy or his Grade Level 17 and to all rights and privileges attaching thereto.

Finally the plaintiff wants the court to order the payment of all his salaries and entitlements from December 29, 2015 until the case is determined.

In response, the Commission through its lawyer, Yusuf Musa requested for time to file its response.

ThisDay 

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