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MAGU: FRESH CONTROVERSY OVER SEIZED ASSETS SALES, OTHERS

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  • Audit panel queries whereabouts of bank interest on seized cash
  • Alleges discrepancies in agency’s records of recovered loots
  • No seized assets sold in five years —Investigation
  • Suspended EFCC chair rules out going to court

An audit panel has raised questions on the whereabouts of the interest accruing from N550 billion recovered by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) from treasury looters.

The panel has also queried what it perceives as discrepancies in the EFCC records of recovered funds.

The questions are contained in the final report of the  Presidential Committee on Audit of Recovered Assets  (PCARA)  covering May 29, 2015 to Novembr 22, 2018


The panel is different from the Ayo Salami Presidential Investigation Committee which is currently probing allegations against the suspended Acting Chairman of EFCC, Mallam Ibrahim Magu, by the Attorney General of the Federation and Justice Minister, Abubakar Malami (SAN).

Sources said yesterday that none of the assets seized by the EFCC had been sold, except the 244 trucks which a Federal High Court ordered to be disposed of by the Deputy Chief Registrar of the FHC in conjunction with the Department of Petroleum Resources and the commission.

The proceeds of the sales were remitted into the Federal Government Recovery Account, it was gathered.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in a report on Saturday quoted PRACA as saying in its report that it was “quite disturbing that conflicting figures are being circulated in the public space by EFCC as the amount of recovered funds.”

Citing foreign currency recoveries as an example, the audit panel said: “ EFCC reported a total naira equivalent of  N46,038,882,509.87, while the naira equivalent of the foreign currency lodgments were N37,533,764,195.66, representing a shortfall of These inconsistencies cast a serious doubt on the accuracy of figures submitted by the EFCC. It is the committee’s view that the EFCC cannot be said to have fully accounted for cash recoveries made by it.

“While EFCC reported total Naira recoveries of N504,154,184,744.04, the actual bank lodgments were  N543,511,792,863.47. These discrepancies mean that EFCC’s actual lodgment exceeded its reported recoveries by N39,357,608,119.43.

“It must be pointed out that the discrepancy of more than thirty nine billion naira does not include interest accrued in this account since it was opened.

“It therefore casts serious doubt on the credibility of the figures and means that substantial amount of money has not been accurately accounted for.

“Failure to report on the interest on actual lodgments clearly establishes that interest element of over N550 billion has been re-looted relating to the period under review.

“This is an apparent case of manipulation of data in a very brazen and unprofessional manner, and this has greatly eroded the public confidence in the anti-corruption efforts,’’ the report stated in part.

The PCARA alleged acts of corruption and money laundering against some EFCC officials, including Magu.

It said: “The NFIU reports established that the Acting Chairman has been using different sources to siphon money from the EFCC, and in some cases collecting bribes from suspects.

“The report has shown that a particular Bureau de Change based in Kaduna has more than 158 accounts and has been receiving huge sums of funds,” the PCARA report said.

The panel was tasked to audit the Assets and Finances of the EFCC as a legal entity from 2015-2020, with a view to establishing compliance or otherwise with procurement procedures of the EFCC in line with the provisions of the Procurement Act.

Seized assets not sold — Investigation

Fresh facts however emerged yesterday that none of the assets seized by the EFCC has been sold except the 244 trucks which the Federal High Court ordered to be disposed of by the Deputy Chief Registrar of the Federal High Court in conjunction with the Department of Petroleum Resources and the EFCC.

After selling the trucks, the proceeds were remitted into the Federal Government Recovery Account.

Sources also said there was allocation of vehicles to some government agencies through special auction with Presidential approval.

Assets under interim forfeiture order were also rented by some Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).

It was learnt that recently the EFCC secured a presidential approval to dispose of 450 forfeited vehicles in Abuja and Lagos.

But the sale of the vehicles is yet to commence.

Despite his travails, the suspended Acting Chairman of EFCC has ruled out a court action against the Federal Government.

He told his relations and lawyers that he has faith in President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure fairness and justice for him.

These details are contained in an investigative fact-sheet on the assets forfeited to the Federal Government.

The suspended EFCC chairman had been accused of selling assets to cronies and relations.

The fact-sheet was already made available to some MDAs and government officials.

Although Magu has denied the allegation, the Presidential Investigation Committee has directed all sectional heads, including the Director in charge of Assets Forfeiture, to submit their reports from 2015 to 2019 on or before Thursday.

Sources said “not a single recovered or forfeited property has been sold and the proceeds fraudulently converted.

“Also, there is a Presidential approval to dispose of 450 forfeited vehicles but no sale/ disposal has been conducted yet.”

One of the sources said: “In the coming days, the comprehensive list of these assets will be defended by the relevant units and Magu.

“It is important to clarify that some MDAs were involved in all the processes on how to dispose of assets; the EFCC or Magu was never unilateral.”

Some of the MDAs which benefitted from the forfeited assets after Presidential approval are the State House; the Ministry of Humanitaria
n Affairs and Disaster Management; the North-East Development Commission; the National Directorate of Employment( NDE); Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD); Voice of Nigeria (VON); the National Commission for Refugees and Displaced Persons and Lagos State Government.

Those who have sought to rent properties under interim forfeiture are the National Council for Arts and Culture and the National Human Rights Commission.

Other beneficiaries are the Nigerian Army, the Federal Ministry of Finance, the Fiscal Responsibility Commission, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission and the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN).

Magu is said to be not disposed to challenging the Federal Government in court under any guise.

His counsel, Mr. Wahab Shittu, made the clarifications in a chat with our correspondent.

He said: “Magu will not take the Federal Government to court because of his faith in the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari and his respect for the person of the President.

“He also believes that notwithstanding the campaign of calumny, justice will prevail.

“Magu is convinced that there are sufficient documentary materials in the custody of various government agencies  that will exonerate him.”

The Ayo Salami panel is expected to continue its investigation on Sunday.

Source: the Nation

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ZAMFARA CP ELKANA RETIRES FROM ACTIVE SERVICE

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Zamfara State Police Commissioner Ayuba Elkana has formally retired from active service of the Nigerian Police Force on Thursday.

He retired on age ground since he has thirty-three of active years in service.

He assumed office as police Commissioner in Zamfara in August 13th 2021 and formally retired after attaining 60 years of age.

During his twelve months of active service as the Police, Commissioner Elkana work harder

Addressing officers of the command, CP Elkana said he has never regretted serving the police force since he has done his best in serving his country.

He commended the IGP Baba Alkali, the state Governor Bello Matawalle, heads of security outfits and indeed all officers of the command for their support to him during his active days as police commissioner.

He also appealed to Nigerian youths to join the police force, stressing that it would help to enhance the depleting manpower, “in order to sustain the efforts to rid Zamfara State and Nigeria in general of security challenges.

He urged his predecessor and indeed all officers of the command to remain committed and be corrupt free in the discharge of their official duty.

Today in Gusau, I am leaving with so much legacy. We were able to stimulate our men and enhanced their operational capacity to combat crimes and criminality in the state.

“But all these achievements were made possible with the collective support and cooperation of the Inspector General of Police, Zamfara State Governor and officers and men of this command.” he explained.

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GAMJIN GUSAU GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATURE: SAMAHO HELD SENSITIZATION RALLY

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A woman leader in charge of the campaign of Dr. Dauda Lawal the Zamfara PDP gubernatorial candidate has conducted a sensitization meeting with hundreds of women as part of her strategies of securing support for the PDP gubernatorial candidate.

Mrs Lami Samaho who conducted the sensitization rally in Gusau on Wednesday with the support of some prominent women including Hajiya Lubabatu Ammani and rest the meeting was scheduled to create awareness on the need for Zamfara women to support Dr. Dauda Lawal.

She emphasized on the need for women to rally round their support for Dr. Dauda Lawal considering the good plans he had for the development of womanhood.

She said, she was sent by Dauda Lawal Dare to continue to engage women and assured them of his resolved to continue to safeguard their value and integrity.

Samaho also emphasized that, the purpose of the sensitization was to enlighten women in Zamfara on the dos and don’t expect of them ahead of the 2023 general elections.

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ZAMFARA CP ELKANA DECORATES (19) NEWLY PROMOTED SUPERINTENDENTS OF POLICE

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Zamfara State Police Commissioner Ayuba Elkana has decorated (19) Deputy Superintendents of Police to their new ranks of Superintendents of Police on Wednesday.

The activity which took place at the state police headquarters was witnessed by DCP Operation Dauda Mamman and DCP Finance and Administration Mr. Olubenga Adepoju.

According to the police spokesperson SP Shehu Muhammad, the CP warned the officers to put in their best and renew their commitment with utmost professionalism to justify the recent elevation to their new ranks.

He also thanked the IGP and indeed the Police Service Commission for the promotion and other gestures provided to the officers and men of the command, and called on all the officers within the command not to relent in doing the right thing.

Few among the officers elevated in the new promotion include, SP Sadiq Umar, O/C Highway Patrol, SP Sadiq Mohd, staff officer senior (SOS), SP Babangida Abubakar, P&G OPs, among others.

In a vote of thanks on behalf of other promo tees, SP Babangida Abubakar expressed appreciation to the IGP and Police service commission for the promotion, and promised to reciprocate the gesture through hard work, commitment in line with professional ethics and international best practices.

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