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Report: Magu Kicks As Salami Panel Recommends Sacking, Prosecution

Suspended Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has kicked against the recommendations by the Ayo Salami Panel.

TheCable reported that the Salami panel recommended Magu’s sacking and prosecution to the President and also recommended the appointment of a new EFCC Chairman without delay.

Mohammed Umar, former Director of Operations at the EFCC, has been in charge of the commission in acting capacity since July 6 when Magu was taken before the panel by a combined team of Department of State Services (DSS) and officers from the Force Criminal Investigation Department (FCID) of the police in Abuja.

Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami accused Magu of insubordination and “grave malfeasance” in a memo he sent to President Muhammadu Buhari.

Magu has written the panel through his attorney, Wahab Shittu seeking to be served a copy of the charges against him.

In a report by Saturday PUNCH, it quoted a Police insider who pleaded for anonymity on Magu’s current situation. The report said the documents and testimonies against him are what necessitated the panel’s recommendation to the President.

“The Salami panel has been sending interim reports to the President. Its latest report, however, recommends Magu’s sacking from the EFCC and possible prosecution.”

However, Magu’s attorney, Shittu said Justice Salami had told him that no such report had been submitted to the President.

Suspended acting EFCC Chairman, Ibrahim Magu

He said: “I don’t understand why we should be talking about a reaction to something that is blatantly falsehood. First, the panel is still calling witnesses. Two witnesses appeared before the panel today. So, if there were ongoing proceedings on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and the panel has adjourned till Monday, if witnesses are still being taken and interrogated, and documents are still being submitted, what that should suggest to you is that proceedings are ongoing and have not been concluded. Does it (then) make sense for a report to be submitted?”

He added that Magu has not opened his defence yet and it will be inappropriate to make a stand on the allegations against him without listening to his defence.

“Ibrahim Magu, my client, has not opened his defence and the panel has repeatedly indicated that he would be allowed to defend himself only after witnesses have been exhausted. So, somebody who has yet to defend allegations against him, can he be indicted?

“Whether interim or final, you cannot issue the report without listening to all the witnesses and then take the defence. My reaction is that the story is planted by mischief makers. A similar falsehood was published by a newspaper and I confronted the panel yesterday (Thursday) and the chairman said how could they have issued such a report when they haven’t formally served him with the allegations and he told me to disregard the report.”

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