Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, yesterday, said he would spill the sordid details surrounding the former chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Pension Reforms, Abdulrasheed Maina saga at the appropriate time.
Magu who spoke with journalists at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at a meeting between the African Union delegation and the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Olukunle Bamgbose, however, absolved the Commission of any blame in the controversial reinstatement of the embattled PENCOM taskforce boss.
The meeting was a follow-up to the endorsement of President Muhammadu Buhari by the 29th Ordinary Session of the African Union Assembly in Addis Ababa in July, 2017, as the champion of the Union’s theme for 2018 titled: “Winning the fight against corruption: A sustainable path to Africa’s transformation.”
When asked to comment on how Maina entered the country without the knowledge of the EFCC, Magu initially said the issue should be reserved for another time.
He, however, shifted ground, saying the best the EFCC could do in the circumstances it found itself on the Maina issue was to declare him wanted. He refused to expatiate.
“We should reserve that for another time. We have done our best. We have declared him a wanted person. It is on our website. So, if you happen to come in… I think you should be reading, you should be reading,” Magu said.
Pressured to comment on the unveiling of identity of the mastermind of the reinstatement, Magu said: “No. At the appropriate time, I would make statement on this issue.”
The anti-graft agency had declared Maina wanted over his role in the fraudulent biometric contracts through which he, Steve Oronsaye, former head of service, and two others allegedly mismanaged over N2 billion of pension funds.
For many years, Maina went underground to evade arrest by the EFCC, which had also secured a warrant order, only to mysteriously resurface as a director in the ministry of interior, recently.
Amidst public outrage, claim and counter-claim, the Presidency ordered his immediate disengagement and ordered a probe.
Daily Sun gathered that the acting chairman of the Federal Civil Service Commission submitted the report to the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari on Wednesday night.
Kyari was said to have written to the acting chairman of the FCSC, while the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Mrs. Winifred Oyo-Ita, queried the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Interior.
Oyo-Ita’s response and that of the Permanent Secretary had earlier been submitted to Kyari on the order of President Buhari.
“There are now three reports before the Presidency on the matter,” a Presidency source who did not want to be named confirmed.
However, a key actor in the Maina saga and Minister of Interior, Lt. Gen. (retd) Abdulrahman Dambazau, was absent at the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari, yesterday.
His conspicuous absence set tongues wagging as many persons had called on the president to immediately fire him and others fingered in the Maina recall mess.
But the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, and the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Mrs. Winifred Oyo-Ita who were also linked to the reinstatement scandal were at the meeting.
Malami, who arrived the Council chamber around 10:53 am had discussions with the Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed and the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, while Oyo-Ita, arrived a minute later.
The president had on Monday ordered disengagement of Maina from service, queried the HoS and ordered investigation on how he was recalled, reinstated and promoted from assistant director to director.