THEWILL Editorial: Magu’s EFCC And Loots Recovered From Treasury Looters

BEVERLY HILLS, June 12, (THEWILL) – In the last few months, the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Magu and the agency have struggled to give exact figures of recoveries from alleged treasury looters.

In November 2017, Magu disclosed that the commission had so far recovered N739 billion. In yet another instance in February this year, he claimed that the EFCC had recovered about N500 billion.

These inconsistencies have aroused suspicion that the EFCC has no proper records of its recoveries and thus sparking claims of abuse of assets and funds recovered from its multiple investigations.

Curiously, the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, who should by virtue of her office know the status of the recoveries sparked further controversy in February when she disclosed conflicting figures. Following the controversy that ensued, the Minister in a leaked memo to the EFCC boss asked the agency’s head to brief her on the exact position of the recoveries.

According to her, the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation had only received N91.4 billion from the EFCC meaning that hundreds of billions are yet to be accounted for by the anti graft agency.

THEWILL is therefore concerned over the inconsistencies in the figures of recoveries and the inability of agencies in that value chain to work closely and share information. We also demand full transparency and accountability from the anti-graft agency in this regard.

This is important coming against the backdrop of the corruption allegations against Magu culminating in his yet-to-be confirmed appointment by the Senate as the substantive chairman of the EFCC.

There are unconfirmed reports that the EFCC claims it expended monies from the recoveries to cover some of its operational costs. If this is correct then there is a problem with that. On whose authority or statutory law did the agency do this?

We posit that all monetary recoveries and proceeds from disposed assets should be placed in a dedicated account at the central bank and records shared with the office of the Minister of Finance and the office of the Accountant General of the federation.

THEWILL recalls news reports and the senate probe which targeted the erstwhile EFCC Chairman, Mr. Ibrahim Lamorde, over alleged misappropriation of billions from the sale assets recovered during his days as head of the agency.

The Magu led EFCC must always be above board in all its dealings since it remains the last line in the fight against corruption.

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