Efforts by the embattled acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, to secure his release from custody is proving abortive.
DAILY NIGERIAN reports that Mr Magu has been in custody at the Force Criminal Investigation Department, FCID, since Monday when he was whisked away by the operatives of the Department of State Security Services, SSS.
The EFCC boss is being investigated by the Justice Ayo Salami-led presidential investigative panel over allegations of corruption and misconduct levelled against him by Minister of Justice and Attorney-General Abubakar Malami.
He was suspended by President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday.
On Thursday, the presidential investigative panel widened the scope of their probe to encompass many directors in the commission.
It was gathered that about 16 top officials of the EFCC and that of the Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit, NFIU, appeared before the Justice Ayo Salami-led panel.
Among those grilled are: Secretary to the EFCC, Ola Oloyede; Director of Operations, Mohammed Umar, and a former Director of Organisational support now a Commissioner of Police, Bolaji Salami.
It was also gathered that the panel had given the EFCC directors a one-week deadline to submit the list of cases investigated and prosecuted since 2015.
Mr Magu’s lawyer, Tosin Ojaomo, on Thursday presented a verbal application for a bail to the panel.
However, his request met heaped debris as he was advised to submit a formal application to Inspector-General of Police, IGP.
Speaking with The Punch, Mr Ojaomo said: “We are still trying to get him bailed. I was there early in the morning but I was told he had already been taken to the Villa. They have not shown us any remand order. However, I was told that he is being treated decently.
“The problem is that once he is taken from there (FCID) at about 8am, he remains with the panel till evening. The DIG is the one in charge as regards detention and he has the power to approve administrative bail. I have been trying to see him as regards Magu’s case.”
“On Friday I will make a formal application for bail.”
Mr Ojaomo denied insinuations that Mr Magu could be detained perpetually without a court order because he is a serving police officer.
“Our aim, for now, is just to get him out of there. Every Nigerian has a constitutional right to liberty. Even though what we hear these days is that the police can keep him because he is a senior officer, I do not subscribe to that. He ought to be treated like a Nigerian”, the lawyer said.