UK frustrating Diezani’s corruption trial – EFCC
The acting Chairman of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, has alleged some foreign countries of sabotaging the commission’s efforts at repatriating a former Minister of Petroleum, Diezani Allison-Madueke.
He stated this on Wednesday during an official visit to the Ibadan zonal office of the commission.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that EFCC had, in the last five years, been on the trail of the former minister over alleged corrupt practices.
Mr Magu said that he suspected sabotage on the part of some foreign countries over Allison-Madueke’s case, wondering why the countries would keep her from the commission for no just reason.
“They have not taken her to court and this is the fifth year. Why should you be investigating a case for five years? It is a straight case and not a murder case which takes longer processes.
“You know it is a financial crime investigation. It is a straight forward case. If you don’t have sufficient evidence to take her to court, bring her back. We have more than enough evidence to take her to court.
“I don’t know why they are protecting her. Release her and let her come back to Nigeria. They are giving her protection for reasons best known to them.
“They have yet to declare any evidence recovered against her. They are still relying on our evidence,” he said.
The EFCC boss said that the whistleblower policy was still very active and operational, blaming the slow pace of its implementation on court processes.
“The whistleblower policy is still active; it is still working. The only thing is that it is being slowed down because you need to go through all the court processes.
“We have to exhaust the court processes. The court will have to declare the amount recovered as loot before the whistleblower gets his or her own share,” he said.
Mr Magu said that the agency was collaborating with all stakeholders, including the media, in its fight against corruption.
“We are collaborating with everybody. We are collaborating with Nigerians in the Diaspora. We are collecting a lot of information from them and that is our strength in getting the looters.
“We also want to collaborate with Nigerians generally so that they will give us information to expose looters and get them to return their loots,” he said.
He said that the agency had a relationship with the FBI and CIA in most of the overseas countries.
On the recent raid of an Ibadan night club by EFCC operatives, he explained that there was nothing wrong in raiding suspected internet fraudsters at the night club.
Mr Magu noted that the commission was evolving ways of rehabilitating them and bring them back to the society, adding that they were young intelligent Nigerians, who could still be useful to the society.
“We go against fraudsters who made their money illegally, and we only do that when we have actionable intelligence,” he said.
He appreciated the media for their support and partnership, describing them as essential partners in the anti-corruption crusade.
Mr Magu commended Ibadan zone for the unprecedented achievements recorded so far and the transformation at the office complex.
NAN reports that aside Magu’s visit, the zonal office was a beehive of activities, as hundreds of job seekers thronged the office for the ongoing recruitment exercise.