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Ozekhome Testifies Before Presidential Panel Against Magu

Ozekhome Testifies Before Presidential Panel Against Magu 

Mike Ozekhome (SAN), a prominent lawyer, has testified before the presidential panel investigating Ibrahim Magu, the suspended acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Ozekhome testified before the Justice Ayo Salami-led panel against Magu on Tuesday, according to the Punch.

It was learnt that Ozekhome was invited to appear before the panel as part of a probe into the investigative deficiencies of the EFCC under Magu.

The senior lawyer submitted six exhibits, including two video clips and some documents.

A member of the Magu legal team, Tosin Ojaomo, confirmed that they were aware of Ozekhome’s appearance before the panel.

But Ojaomo said it was regrettable that Ozekhome, who had publicly berated the leadership of the EFCC and Magu, could be invited by the panel to testify while his client has been purportedly denied the chance to make his defence.

The lawyer wondered why the presidential panel invited persons who had grievances with the suspended EFCC boss.

He said, “We are aware of the visit of Chief Ozekhome. His grouse is the freezing of his account in 2017, which was later unfrozen. Unfortunately, it only goes on to show that the panel is on a fishing expedition, because the panel is also inviting people, who have a score to settle with Magu.

“This is not how panels are supposed to act. We all remember how the Justice Oputa panel conducted itself professionally many years ago. People, who were invited, were given petitions ahead of time so that they could defend themselves. Till date, Magu has not received any petition. Is this fair?”

But Ozekhome countered Ojaomo, saying his appearance before the panel was to point out the deficiencies in the EFCC with a view to helping the anti-graft agency to actualise its core mandate.

He also confirmed that he made certain recommendations to the panel.

He said: “I have not even said anything about the seizure of my funds by the EFCC and I am surprised that Ojaomo, a lawyer, can talk about something he didn’t witness. My N75m was seized by Magu and his goons despite the fact that it was my legal fees. I went to court and defeated them; so, I have nothing to prove.

“All I did at the panel was to tender some documents and some CDs, which contained videos. One of them is a video where I was given a standing ovation at an event where I advised Magu on how to fight corruption. It was about telling them not to do a one-sided anti-graft war, where you arrest activists and leave those in government.

“I also tendered a letter dated May 2017, which I wrote to the then acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo. In the letter, I raised 12 questions as to where the recovered loot and property were and if the property had been sold, to who and for how much. Tell Ojaomo to relax and that I have not yet started.”

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