Ibrahim Magu assures whistle-blowers of safety
• Wrote CJ, Not CJN On Justice Nyako
The Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, has urged the public to support the whistle-blowing policy of President Muhammadu Buhari, assuring that the security of the informant would be guaranteed.
Magu, in a statement signed by the acting spokesman of the Commission, Tony Orilade, stated at a town Hall meeting organised on whistle-blowing and fight against corruption in Nigeria at City Green Hotel, Jimeta, Adamawa State, adding: “The whistle-blower can report to the authorities through a secure online portal, which would also conceal the identity of the blower through the Ministry of Finance or through law enforcement agencies, like EFCC.”
The EFCC boss, represented by Head of Operations, EFCC Gombe Office, Friday Ebelo, noted that the federal government introduced the policy in 2016 based on the Whistle-Blower Act.
“The policy states that if you whistle-blow in good faith, you will be protected. If you feel that you have been treated badly because of your report, you can file a formal complaint. If you report false or misleading information, it will be referred to the enforcement agents for investigation and possible prosecution,” he added.
He further said corruption is a cankerworm that has eaten deep into the fabrics of every system in Nigeria, adding: “It is a crime with such a despicable viral effect and disastrous tendency, like terrorism, and is capable of obstructing good governance.”
Meanwhile, the Commission has clarified that Magu’s letter, requesting that all EFCC court cases being handled by Justice Binta Nyako of a Federal High Court, Abuja, be reassigned to another Judge was sent to the Chief Judge (CJ) of the Federal High Court, Justice Adamu Abdu-Kafarati, and not the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Samuel Onnoghen, as reported.
According to Orilade, the EFCC regretted that it had erroneously reported on Thursday, November 22, that the letter was sent to the CJN, saying the error was regretted.
EFCC Prosecuting Counsel, Onjefu Obe, had said that the request for transfer of the cases was in a bid to obtain fair trial.
Obe had, on November 21, in the course of prosecution of the quartet of Umar Audu Bida, Truth Igogori, Ifeyinwa Nwankwesiri and Ogechukwu Obaji by the EFCC over their complicity in a $1million fraud, said: “The concern of the Commission to reassign all EFCC cases before Justice Nyako, borders on likely bias on part of the trial Judge, considering the fact that the EFCC is also prosecuting her husband, Murtala Nyako, a former Adamawa State governor for alleged fraud.”