The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has asked Ibrahim Magu, the embattled chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), to step aside as the sheriff of the agency after he was gripped by Department of State Services (DSS).
It should be recalled that Magu was arrested on Monday, July 6, by the operatives of the state security services, though DSS said he was not arrested but only invited for interrogation. Peter Afunanya, the spokesperson for the DSS said that the EFCC boss was only invited to Aso Rock for questionong, clarified growing media reports that Magu was apprehended over alleged illegal ownership of properties.
Speaking on the development, PDP said Magu must be ready to play the integrity card by submitting himself for investigation. Reacting to Magu’s purported arrest on Monday, PDP said this will preserve the integrity of the EFCC boss’ office.
The main opposition party also called on President Muhammadu Buhari to demonstrate acute genuineness in the fight against corruption and various forms of corrupt practices in government. PDP further noted that Magu’s purported arrest was beyond a mere invitation since he has been earlier indicted by the attorney-general of the federation, Abubakar Malami.
The party said it is keenly monitoring Magu’s case, adding that President Buhari should preserve the sanctity of the EFCC boss’ office by mandating him to step aside.
The PDP in a statement issued by its Spokesman, Kola Ologbondiyan, also called on President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration “to show the genuineness of its war against corruption by allowing the unhindered investigation of Magu.”
Ologbondiyan said for the EFCC boss to be accompanied by a lawyer reveals that the said “invitation”, was beyond the routine.
He said “the PDP holds that the development around the EFCC acting Chairman as well as the desperate attempt by the Commission to cover or wave off his investigation, only raise more integrity questions regarding Magu’s activities in the EFCC.
“Only last month, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minster of Justice, Abubakar Malami, released a memo in which he indicted Magu of alleged diversion of recovered funds and fraudulent sale of assets seized by the EFCC.
“Our party, Nigerians and indeed, the international community are keenly monitoring the development and expect the Buhari Presidency to muster the courage to carry out a comprehensive investigation and make its findings available to the public.”
According to the PDP spokesman, Magu, with the corruption investigation, has “lost the moral rectitude to continue to preside over the anti-corruption agency. He should step aside until he proves himself innocent.”
Meanwhile, it is reported that Oluwatoyin Ojaomo, the lawyer to the acting chairman of the EFCC Ibrahim Magu, has disclosed the reasons why his client is being probed by a presidential panel.
Ojaomo speaking on a Channels TV programme, ‘Politics Today’ on Monday, July 6, said one of the reasons his client was being investigated was because of the recoveries he announced publicly. The lawyer added that Magu was also being questioned because the recovered funds remitted to the government were more than the money declared.