Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, yesterday, appeared before a panel at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, to answer some questions.
His invitation to the panel is coming barely a week after Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, wrote a petition to President Muhammadu Buhari seeking his removal as boss of the anti-graft Commission.
While there was earlier claim that Magu was arrested, it was gathered later that operatives of Department of State Services (DSS) served him the invitation while he was driving out of the office yesterday to attend a meeting at the Police Force Headquarters.
Clarifying the matter, Peter Afunanya, DSS spokesman said Magu was never arrested.
“The DSS wishes to inform the public that it did not arrest Ibrahim Magu, acting chairman of the EFCC, as has been reported by sections of the media. The service, has since today, July 6, 2020, been inundated with enquiries over the alleged arrest.”
Similarly, spokesman for the EFCC, Dele Oyewale, in a statement, said Magu voluntarily reported at the Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
“Acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr. Ibrahim Magu, on Monday, July 6, 2020, honoured an invitation by a presidential panel reviewing the activities of the EFCC, at the Banquet Hall wing of the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
“He was served the invitation to the panel while on his way to the Force Headquarters, Abuja, for a meeting. The EFCC’s boss was neither arrested nor forced to honour the invitation. A member of a legal team from the EFCC is also with him on the panel,” the statement read.
Security bars journalists from panel’s sitting venue
Journalists covering the Villa were asked to leave the State House Conference Centre, and stay away from the vicinity for the day.
The journalists had gone to confirm if indeed the EFCC boss was being grilled by a panel set up to investigate allegations of infractions against him.
The journalists met five DSS operatives dressed in black and seated just outside the conference centre at about 3.20pm.
While the security operatives did not stop the journalists from entering the conference centre, attempts made by the newsmen to access the media centre upstairs were thwarted.
A DSS official with a Villa accreditation approached the newsmen and said: “They said you people should excuse the use of this place for today.”
Multiple sources familiar with the development told Daily Sun that Magu’s recent face-off with Malami may have prompted his invitation.
The AGF, in a memo, reportedly listed Magu’s ‘22 sins.’
He also urged President Buhari to take action on the allegations.