‘Missing $2.5b’: Magu urges UK to extradite Diezani

ACTING Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, has urged the United Kingdom (UK) to extradite to Nigeria a former Petroleum Resources Minister, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, to account for alleged missing $2.5 billion in her ministry during ex-President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration.

Magu addressed reporters yesterday in Kaduna ahead of today’s passing out parade of EFCC trainees at the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA) in the ancient town.

The acting chairman said the commission’s personnel were trained to “shoot and kill corruption in Nigeria so we cannot be challenged by any threat”.

He said Diezani allegedly stole so much money while she was minister tom the extent that she needed to be extradited to the country to return the money to the Federal Government.

“I was in London this year. We did investigation together with the UK team. Anywhere I go, I always call for the extradition of corrupt Nigerians to return our money.

“This woman has stolen so much, not less than $2.5 billion. Unfortunately, she has a generation of looters who are supporting her. This is not good.

“We are in touch with the international community. She is under protective custody. Otherwise, we would have arrested her, returned her to Nigeria,” Magu said.

The EFCC acting chairman said corruption is surmountable.

He also said the commission had secured 1,266 convictions from January 2019 till date.

Magu addressed reporters on the passing out parade of the Detective Inspector Course Five of the commission at the NDA in Kaduna.

The acting chairman explained that the commission secured 1,218 of the convictions in 2019 and 48 this year.

Magu said in the last four years, the EFCC had secured an unprecedented number of convictions.

“We have also handed over several forfeited properties to government agencies, thereby saving the nation billions of naira in rent.

“The profile of convictions we have secured is quite heavy. They involve former governors, captains of industry, former military chiefs, oil subsidy merchants and scores of players in the private sector.

“We are not relenting in our crusade and it is important that every Nigeria jumps into the bandwagon of anti-corruption fight,” he added.

On acts of malfeasance and their effects on the country, Magu said: “Corruption is a mountain and it can only be broken by prepared men and women of valour and virtues. Everything that went into training of the graduating cadets was necessary for their fitness.

“Nigeria shall never be corrupted because we will not give up and we will not surrender to the forces of darkness and greed in our midst.”

Also, EFCC’s Head of Port Harcourt Zone, Usman Imam, warned youths to stay away from all acts of criminality and easy money.

Imam spoke after the 10 million-man walk against corruption organised by the EFCC and the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).

“The future that the Nigerian youth deserves is not going to be secured through corruption and engagement in acts of criminality, such as cybercrime, advanced fee fraud and money laundering. They can secure a blissful future through pursuit of legitimate businesses and vocations.

“The youths must shun criminality and strive to rescue the country from the grips of corruption. They are to take ownership of the anti-graft war. For this reason, it is imperative that we sensitise them and recruit them to fight in the anti-corruption army.

“This message is inviting all Nigerian youths from all nooks and crannies to say no to corruption. Together we can win the war.

“If everybody is determined and we wrestle down corruption, then we can build functioning and effective institutions and take our position within the comity of nations.

“Wherever the youths are found, they should embrace this call and tell themselves that they will fight corruption, say no to corruption and stay away from it.

“The youths should stay away from looking for easy money through internet fraud, cybercrime and 419. Instead, they should embrace hard work and find ways to make it as a society,” Imam said.

The NYSC State Coordinator Chinwendu Chukwu, who was represented by the Assistant Director of Corps Inspection and Monitoring, Mrs. Agulue Okoye, said corps members were expected to make positive change across the country.