Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Saturday said the President Muhammadu Buhari-Federal Government must not cover for the indicted Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), but ensure that he answers for alleged corruption, reported violation of rules, victimisation of Nigerians and stealing of recovered funds for which he has been suspended.
“What Nigerians expect at this time is for the Federal Government to ensure Magu’s prosecution in court as well as take necessary and decisive steps to restore the integrity of the EFCC by ensuring that Magu’s replacement as EFCC Chairman is thoroughly screened to avoid the ills and violations experienced under the suspended acting chairman,” PDP said.
The party described Magu as not only being unfit to lead an agency like the EFCC, but has also allegedly “reduced the anti-corruption agency to a house of corruption and a partisan witch-hunt organisation that thrives in violation of rules, abuse of investigation processes, manipulation of court procedures as well as a vehicle to harass and extort money from innocent Nigerians.”
The opposition party stated that “Magu should be made to provide answer to allegations in the public space that he was more interested in securing politically induced convictions rather than justice, for which he allegedly turned EFCC into a terror house where innocent Nigerians are harassed with trumped-up charges and convicted on media trial even before being allowed to defend themselves in court.”
The party said: “There are also allegations of violation of rights, including allegedly making his victims to make statements in custody without the services of their lawyers. This is in addition to insinuations in the public that the indicted EFCC boss was also harassing certain judges to get conviction on cases.
“Similarly, there are several cases of officers and ranks of the commission whose employment in the service were unjustly suspended or terminated.”
PDP accused Magu og destroying “the integrity of the anti-corruption agency with his manifest selective fight against corruption, in which no member of the current administration, including those who have been openly indicted for corruption, has been prosecuted by EFCC.”
“Nigerians can recall that under Magu, the former National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, was bold to state that once a corrupt person joins the APC, all his sins are forgiven.
“Moreover, the memo by the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, detailing charges of diversion of recovered funds, secret sale of seized property and insubordination among others now validates the position of most Nigerians that Ibrahim Magu lacks the required discipline, exposure and experience to head an agency like EFCC,” the party added.
PDP, in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, also urged “an investigation into the alleged connection between the indicted EFCC boss and certain judges handling EFCC cases, while calling on the judiciary to sanitise the courts in this direction.”