On Friday, Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu directed the immediate withdrawal of all police operatives serving at the EFCC, adding that they should be replaced with new ones.
The EFCC has offices in 15 states across the country including Abuja. These zonal offices are located in Abuja, Lagos, Rivers, Enugu, Kano, Gombe, Oyo, Kaduna, Borno, Edo, Akwa Ibom, Sokoto, Kwara and Benue, with its headquarters in the Jabi area of Abuja and secured by riot policemen, who also provide backup for EFCC operatives during operations.
In a police signal marked 101646/07/2020 addressed to the Assistant Inspector General, Police Mobile Force, PMF Squadrons one to 79, Force Secretary and Commissioners of Police of all the state commands and the Federal Capital Territory, the IG ordered that all the policemen deployed in EFCC be withdrawn and replaced with new operatives.
According to the order, only staff of the EFCC should be allowed access into the premises, while withdrawn police personnel from PMF 21, 44, 45, 46 and 50 must report to the Force Headquarters by 8am on Monday.
Many of the policemen at the EFCC were believed to be loyal to the suspended EFCC boss.
Noble Reporters Media learnt that police security guarding the official and personal houses of Magu had been withdrawn. The men were ordered to leave the residences in Abuja.
NRM further gathered that all vehicles in the official house in Maitama were also driven away. Suspended EFCC boss’ escort withdrawn, seeks bail on self-recognition
Meanwhile, Magu, who has been in detention since his arrest, has applied to the IG to be released on bail. He made the request through a letter sent on his behalf by one of his lawyers, Mr Oluwatosin Ojaomo, on Friday.
His lawyer’s letter dated July 10 with the IGP office’s acknowledgment stamp bearing the same date, requested that Magu be granted bail “on self-recognisance.”
“Finally, if our application for bail on self-recognisance is not acceptable, we are ready to provide a credible surety that will ensure the availability of our client anytime he is needed for the purpose of this investigation,” the letter added.
Also copied in the letter were the President Buhari; the Chairman of the Presidential Probe Panel on the activities of the EFCC, Justice Ayo Salami (retd); the Chairman, Presidential Advisory Committee on Anti-Corruption, Prof Itsay Sagay (SAN); and the Deputy Inspector-General of Police in charge of Investigation, Force Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, Garki Area 10, Abuja, where Magu is reportedly being held.
His lawyer in the letter also reminded the IGP of his “recent directives to all police formations in Nigeria not to detain any suspect for any offence which is bailable in nature due to the COVID-19 pandemic that is ravaging the world which Nigeria is not an exemption from.”
Ojaomo stated that his client had denied all the allegations being investigated by the panel including the ones levelled against him by the Attorney-General of the Federation, Mr Abubakar Malami (SAN), “and has provided both documentary and oral evidence to clear the air on all the allegations.”
He added, “Sir, our client has been in your detention facility since the 6th day of July, 2020 hoping to be granted administrative bail by your office, our decision to write this application to your office is premised on your declaration and avowed commitment at your inauguration as the Inspector-General of Police to ensure that the constitutional rights of all Nigerians are protected under your leadership.”
He stated that granting bail to Magu would enable him to adequately prepare for his defence before the panel.
He stated, “In view of the bailable nature of the allegations levelled against our client, we hereby apply that you grant him an administrative bail pending the completion of the investigation into the allegations levelled against him so that he can adequately prepare himself for the defence of these allegations in accordance with the relevant provision of the constitution.”