Nigeria

‘Magu is distorting facts’ — Ex-director of First bank writes Presidential panel

Dauda Lawal, former executive director of First Bank of Nigeria, has accused Ibrahim Magu, suspended chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), of distorting facts in his defence before the presidential investigative committee.

The committee, headed by Ayo Salami, retired president of the appeal court, is probing the activities of the agency under Magu.

Magu was alleged to have mishandled the recovered loot and sold seized assets to his associates.

In a letter addressed to the presidential committee, Lawal said Magu made inconsistent statements without evidence in his testimony before the committee.

“My Lord, I wish to respectfully state that the narrative by Mr. Ibrahim Magu in his said defence is laced with barefaced distortion of relevant facts, and is an attempt to mislead the Honourable Panel. Contrary to extant documentary evidence, Mr. Ibrahim Magu concocted a tale to suit his mischief without providing any supporting proof of his false account,” Lawal said.

“Mr. Magu in his response sought to explain that the sum of US$153,310.000 (One Hundred and Fifty-Three Million, Three Hundred and Ten Thousand United States Dollars) was brought to Fidelity Bank Plc. from NNPC on behalf of Mrs. Deziani Alison-Madueke.

“My Lord, a simple arithmetical calculation will show that by Mr. Magu’s narrative, the total amount of the above sums allegedly brought by the above-named persons from NNPC to Fidelity Bank Plc. is the sum of US$152,480,000. This latest summation by Mr. Magu is inconsistent with the depositions contained in the Affidavit in support of the Motion Ex parte for Interim Forfeiture filed by the EFCC before the Federal High Court on 6th January 2017 that the amount brought from NNPC to Fidelity Bank Plc. was US$153,310.000.

“Worse still is that both in Mr. Magu’s narrative and in the Affidavit filed by the EFCC in support of the Ex parte Application, Mr. Magu and the EFCC failed to show or disclose how the above sums were withdrawn or “moved” from the NNPC by the above-named persons.

“No account operated or managed by NNPC in any Bank or financial institution was given as the source of where the sum was allegedly withdrawn. No record of or from NNPC has been shown to support the bogus allegation that the sums as alleged by Mr. Magu was withdrawn from NNPC and “moved” to Fidelity Bank Plc.

“One wonders how the EFCC and Mr. Magu could rely on the above claims which are false, unfounded and contradictory as the foundation/basis of their allegations against me.”

Lawal said contrary to Magu’s claim, record of proceedings showed that he was always in court to defend allegations against him and that he never employed any delay tactics to stall the case before the federal high court.

On Wednesday, the presidential committee said it would ensure fair hearing during the probe.

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