By Joyce Remi- Babayeju
Abuja ( SundiataPost)- The Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC) has called the Presidential Panel set up to carry out a transparent and fair investigation into the allegations of corruption and insubordination leveled against the acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Magu.
It would be recalled that trouble started for Ibrahim Magu, former Acting Chairman of EFCC following allegations made by the Attorney – General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami.
The embattled Magu has since been removed from office and is being investigated by a Presidential Panel headed by the former president of the Court of Appeal, Justice Ayo Salami (Rtd).
In a statement signed by Executive Director, CISLAC
Auwal Ibrahim Musa (Rafsanjani), Magu was head of a very sensitive position of a sensitive government agency tasked with the investigation of financial crimes, such as advance fee fraud and money laundering, it is thus pertinent that the case be handled with all diligence and transparency in order to ensure that the gains in the fight against corruption are not lost in the battle for supremacy and political advantage, adding that the real issue surrounding Magu’s allegations which is still unclear sends conflicting signals to Nigerians.
The CSO noted that the long overdue development has heightened the need for reforms in Anti-Corruption Agencies (ACAs), particularly in the aspect of Asset Recovery,CISLAC has been consistent in calling for a reform of the system, which is prone to mismanagement, embezzlement and political misuse.
There is no clear framework on who takes custodian of recovered assets and how they are utilized. The Government has claimed recoveries of assets worth billions of dollars without accounting who manages these assets, how these assets are utilized and what prevents the re-looting of looted assets. The control of lucrative asset recovery ‘business’ of asset freezes, confiscations and repatriations has caused inter-agency rivalry among ACAs saddled with the responsibility of fighting corruption.
CISLAC further called on government to enact the Proceeds of Crime Bill and Mutual Legal Assistance Bill which would go a long way in strengthening the anti-corruption fight in Nigeria.