Pressure UK to release Diezani for trial -EFCC Chairman, Magu tells Nigerians in diaspora

Ibrahim Magu, acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has called on Nigerians in the diaspora to pressure the UK government to release Diezani Allison-Madueke, former minister of petroleum resources, for trial.

According to Dele Oyewale, EFCC spokesman, Magu gave the charge during a virtual townhall meeting with Nigerians in the diaspora, on Saturday.

The ex-minister, who is being investigated over allegations of bribery and money laundering, relocated to the UK shortly before ex-President Goodluck Jonathan handed over to President Muhammadu Buhari in 2015.

Magu had alleged that she looted $2.5 billion but she has denied all the allegations that the anti-graft agency levelled against her.

During the meeting, Magu asked Nigerians abroad to support the anti-graft war by exposing foreign assets of local politicians through the government’s whistle- blowing policy.

“The EFCC needs collaborative engagements with you all. Nigerians in the United Kingdom need to collaborate with the EFCC more and pressure the authorities there to assist the EFCC in bringing Diezani to trial,” he said.

“Does it not bother Nigerians in that country that Diezani has not been brought to trial for the heinous allegations of corruption against her in Nigeria? The public ownership of the fight against corruption should not be limited to Nigerians at home, we must all come forward, wherever we are, to insist that corrupt practices must not continue.

“We are on course. In 2020 alone, in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have secured 213 convictions already. This shows the commitment we are putting into the work.”

Magu also said businesses operated in the country by Nigerians in diaspora will be protected from fraudsters.

He said local fraudsters frustrating diasporans from investing in Nigeria would henceforth be dealt with.

Magu said the anti-graft agency is ready to offer intelligence services to foreign investors by providing information on their prospective business partners.

“The EFCC is ready to offer intelligence services to anyone seeking genuine business partners in Nigeria,” he said.

“Profiles of potential business partners in Nigeria would be obtained and delivered to the foreign- based investors and this would assist them in taking decisions on whom to partner with locally. We can also offer intelligence on any line of business desired by the Nigerian in the diaspora. We are ready to do all these to encourage credible and serious investors who do not want to be defrauded by fraudsters at home.”

In reaction, participants at the conference commended the EFCC for its efforts at riding the country off corrupt practices.

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