The homes of the suspended chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, was raided by security agents on Tuesday
Daily Trust learnt that operatives of State Security Service, self-styled as the Department of State Services and riot policemen stormed Mr. Magu’s private home in Karu and his official residence in Maitama in Abuja.
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President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday suspended Magu, according to multiple sources familiar with the case.
The media aide of the anti-graft boss, Tony Amokedo, told the Daily Trust that he is not aware of the suspension of his boss.
Mr Magu allegedly spent last night in police cell at the Force Criminal Investigation Department Headquarters in Area 10, Garki, Abuja, after he was quizzed on Monday for about six hours by a Presidential panel, chaired by a former President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Ayo Salami.
It was gathered that Magu was detained at the FCID after the panel grilled him.
The panel was constituted by President Buhari to probe various allegations levelled against Magu following a petition by the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, and the Department of State Service (DSS).
Malami’s memo allegedly accused Magu of diversion of recovered loot.
The memo was said to contain 22 allegations against the embattled EFCC chairman.
But Malami through his spokesman, Dr Umar Gwandu, said he had no knowledge of Magu’s arrest.
“You are just informing me now,” Gwandu said when told that Malami had reportedly written a memo in June, 2020, which indicted Magu.
“I am also not aware of any memo written to the president on the EFCC chairman,” he said.
How Magu was interrogated
One of our sources said the Salami panel had “quizzed Magu” who has been the acting chairman of the EFCC since when he was first nominated for the job by President Buhari in 2015.
“I am sure Justice Salami was selected to chair the panel because he will not compromise.
“This is a serious setback for the administration’s anti-corruption war.
“As it is now, Magu is a loner.
“He may be asked to handover to the most senior officer in the commission while the investigation continued.
“I don’t see him surviving this,” the source told one of our correspondents.
Another source told the Daily Trust that “it took a long time before President Buhari gave the green light for Magu to be interrogated.”
According to the source, “What happened yesterday was a tough decision…It was at the instance of the president and he (Buhari) agreed that Magu should be asked questions.
“This was based on the petitions and facts made available to him.
“Magu is the face of the anti-corruption war of the president but the allegations are heavy.
“So, I can assure you that it was a tough decision taken by the president in order to save his image and that of his administration,” he said.
Nobody above scrutiny — Presidency
The presidency on Tuesday said the ongoing probe of Mr. Magu is an indication that nobody is above scrutiny under the Buhari’s administration.
A presidency source, who preferred anonymity, said the investigation is to reinforce transparency and accountability and to give him the opportunity to clear himself of weighty allegations.
The source, who said the holder of an elevated office such as the chairman of the EFCC must be above suspicion, gave an assurance that the administration can be counted on to uphold fairness and justice at all times.
The source said: “The panel investigating allegations against Ag. EFCC Chairman had been sitting for some weeks now.
“In consonance with the principle of fairness and justice, it was needful that the Ag. Chairman be given the opportunity to respond to the allegations, which are weighty in nature.
“Under the Muhammadu Buhari administration, nobody is above scrutiny, I repeat, no nobody.
“The investigation is to reinforce transparency and accountability, rather than to vitiate it.
“Accountability for our actions or inactions is inalienable part of democracy.
“In such an elevated position as that of EFCC Chairman, the holder of the position must be above suspicion.
“There’s no prejudgment. Absolutely none. The Buhari’s administration can be counted on to uphold fairness
and justice at all times.”
The two presidential spokesmen, however, declined comment on the matter especially on the purported suspension of Magu.