*Says he never converted recovered loot, not threatened judges
*AGF was an albatross against our smooth operation, he claims
By Myke Uzendu
The former acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Alhaji Ibrahim Magu, has provided responses to some allegations leveled against him.
Magu stated in a document that all the claims against him are “untrue and calculated attempt to tarnish my name”.
He vehemently denied any fraudulent activity while at the helm at EFCC, insisting that “not a dime of the recovered fund was fraudulently converted to my personal use”, and challenged his accusers to produce evidence of such fraudulent conversion.
He also questioned the issues being raised over the powers of the anti-graft agency and his former office to initiate criminal prosecution against anyone who it has established Prima favor case against.
According to him, the power to prosecute cases was not what he could arrogate to himself, adding “before I was appointed acting Chairman of the commission, the agency has constantly exercised its statutory power to institute criminal charges where prima facie evidence was made out without seeking for the consent of the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF)”.
He said that the various decisions of the Courts of Appeal were to the effect that the agency does not need the fiat of the AGF to institute criminal charges.
He said that he has repeatedly sought the details of allegations and petitions against him personally and through his lawyers, but the request had not been obliged up till now.
Magu is being investigated by a presidential panel led by retired Justice Ayo Salami on allegations of gross misconduct of the EFCC under his watch.
He was arrested detained on July 6 over allegations raised against him by Attorney General and Minister of Justice Abubakar Malami.
He said that while the panel insisted that he was before it not as an accused or a suspect but only as a witness, he has yet to know what the issues or the persons were.
He specifically responded to the three important issues bordering on the Report of the Presidential Committee on Audit of Recovered Assets (PCARA), memo of the AGF to the President against him, and the alleged petitions addressed to the AGF which he said were already in the custody of the panel, but not served on him.
He dismissed claims that assets were sold and the proceeds converted under his watch.
He also denied threats issued to judicial officers by him or the EFCC, in the discharge of their official functions.
He equally claimed there was never lack of transparency in the management of recovered assets under his leadership of the agency.
Contrary to reports, he accused the office of the AGF of interference, and being less cooperative and supportive of the process of recovery and management of assets.
Magu further informed the panel that all his actions were documented and followed the prescribed procedures with necessary approvals, insisting that he was innocent and has served Nigeria to the best of his ability “with all sense of responsibility and integrity”.