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I will henceforth fight back against attacks on my person: Magu

By The Rainbow
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The suspended chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr Ibrahim Magu, has said he will henceforth fight back at orchestrated attacks against his person.

One way he will do that is to react to allegations against him in the public space.

Mr Magu's position was contained in a statement on Sunday by his lawyer, Wahab Shittu.

The suspended EFCC boss in the statement denied misappropriating funds recovered from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation.

Shittu said allegations against his client border on matters that were never brought before the panel set up by President Muhammadu Buhari to probe the activities of the EFCC under him.

As per his lawyer, “Take notice that our client can no longer fold his hands in the face of these sustained malicious attacks to prejudge him in the public space.

“Our client will, henceforth, point by point, reply to all false allegations orchestrated against him in the public space on a daily basis, as well as present his comprehensive defense for the world to see.

“This is without prejudice to the willingness of our client to defend himself in the ongoing proceedings at the Presidential Investigation Panel.

“The truth of the matter is that well over N329 billion recovered by EFCC under our client's watch was remitted directly into NNPC dedicated accounts under a special arrangement endorsed by NNPC, EFCC and the affected NNPC's indebted marketers.

“By virtue of the said special arrangement, NNPC had requested formally that the EFCC recover the said amount from the affected NNPC's marketers who were expected to pay such funds directly to NNPC while NNPC, in turn, confirmed receipt of such payments to EFCC.

Shittu said: “Take notice that our client can no longer fold his hands in the face of these sustained malicious attacks to prejudge him in the public space.

“Our client will, henceforth, point by point, reply to all false allegations orchestrated against him in the public space on a daily basis, as well as present his comprehensive defense for the world to see.

“This is without prejudice to the willingness of our client to defend himself in the ongoing proceedings at the Presidential Investigation Panel.

“The truth of the matter is that well over N329 billion recovered by EFCC under our client's watch was remitted directly into NNPC dedicated accounts under a special arrangement endorsed by NNPC, EFCC and the affected NNPC's indebted marketers.

“By virtue of the said special arrangement, NNPC had requested formally that the EFCC recover the said amount from the affected NNPC's marketers who were expected to pay such funds directly to NNPC while NNPC, in turn, confirmed receipt of such payments to EFCC.

“Therefore, EFCC never took custody of any of the recovered funds and so, the question of misappropriation of such funds by EFCC or our client could not have arisen as falsely published.”

Magu was arrested on July 6 and is currently facing investigation over allegations raised by the office of the Attorney-General of the Federation, AGF.

On the allegation of false asset declaration, Shittu said it was as “gross misrepresentation and blatant falsehood”.

Shittu as in his earlier statement said that his client had never been confronted with any such allegations purportedly arising from the panel's proceedings.

“The story attributed to the panel which has become a recurring decimal, is a dangerous attempt to discredit the work of the honourable panel,” he said.

Magu also vehemently denied shielding some persons in the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, from prosecution, describing it as “falsehood from the pit of hell”.

“Investigations were painstakingly conducted by EFCC under our client's watch. The matter has since been referred for prosecution. Charges have been prepared ahead of arraignment in court,” he said.