The detective who led the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) investigation into the infamous pension scam, Habibu Adamu Aliyu, has given insights into how a former chairman of the defunct Pension Reform Task Team (PRTT), Abdulrasheed Maina and his accomplices, explored many avenues to siphon pension funds, and the effort it took to unravel the chains of frauds in administration.
Maina was on November 8 sentenced to 61 years concurrent judgment by a Federal High Court in Abuja, presided by Justice Okon Abang, over charges of money laundering to the tune of N2.1 billion.
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Aliyu, who headed the Pension Fraud Special Team at the EFCC, gave details on the intricacies involved in the investigation of pension scams both at the Office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation (OHCSF) and the police pension department which led to the indictment and prosecution of many senior officials.
The detective, who resigned from the EFCC in 2016 revealed these in an exclusive interview with Daily Trust.
He expressed delight that despite efforts to derail the investigation and subsequent trial of those indicted in the investigation, the case continued with conviction gotten in some and others going through trial.
Aside what he described as courageous investigators, he said the pension fraud probe benefitted from the magnanimity of “patriotic Nigerians” who volunteered information to enable tying up of loose ends in the course of the investigation.
He also acknowledged the support of the Department of Security Services (DSS) in apprehending Maina, and the Judiciary “for applying the law as it is”.
In the course of their investigations, he said, the EFCC officials were confronted with a lot of challenges including death threats, blackmail among other life- threatening challenges.
Read full text of Aliyu’s interview here