Magu set to open defence before presidential panel Thursday

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The suspended Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, will today open his defence against corruption and other allegations levelled against him before the special presidential probe panel.

This was after the retired Justice Isa Ayo Salami-led panel gave him access to a copy of the report of the Presidential Committee on Audit of Recovered Assets (PCARA), where the allegations against Magu are contained.

Before giving him access to the report, Justice Salami reportedly extracted a commitment from Wahab Shittu, Magu’s lawyer, that the report would not be leaked to the media.

This was said to have become necessary in order not to jeopardise the panel’s work.

Meanwhile, the embattled EFCC boss on Wednesday appeared before the committee with a 78-page document containing his defence against the query by the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), PCARA’s report and other allegations in the public domain.

Although he reportedly waited for eight hours to see the committee, his appearance lasted only a few minutes, as the committee said it would only take his defence after serving him the content of the PCARA report.

Quoting a top source connected to the investigation, The Nation reported, “After waiting for hours, the panel met with Magu for a few minutes. The committee later decided to make a copy of the PCARA report available to Magu to enable him to address all the allegations against him.

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“It however gave a condition that PCARA report must not be leaked in any manner to the press to avoid distraction of its activities.

“With the concession by the panel, Magu will now open his Defence from Thursday or thereabout. He will be able to tender his defence which has not been accepted by the panel because the allegations were yet to be served on him. This is a good dimension.”

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