Magu kept me in detention for 21 days after I demanded N763m legal fees – Ex-EFCC Lawyer

Godwin Obla, a former prosecutor with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has accused Ibrahim Magu of ordering his detention after he asked for N763 million legal fees which the agency owes him.

Magu, the suspended EFCC acting chairman, was arrested and detained on Monday, July 6, 2020, following a summons by the presidential panel probing the activities of the agency under him.

The panel is headed by Ayo Salami, retired president of the appeal court.

Testifying before the panel on Monday, Obla, who claimed he prosecuted high-profile cases for the agency, said instead of paying him the accrued sum, Magu kept him in custody for 21 days over trumped-up charges of bribing Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia, a judge.

“As of date, the EFCC owes me an outstanding balance of N685,389,928.10 and $202,460.47 (N78.5m) or its naira equivalent at the prevailing Central Bank of Nigeria exchange rate, together with interest at prime lending rate, being professional fees for the prosecution of over 40 high profile cases,” he said.

“In effect, Ibrahim Magu deliberately and maliciously denied me the fruits of my services for EFCC whilst putting me to great expense to defend a worthless charge.

“I have never made any payment of N5 million or any other amount to Justice Ajumogobia. To the best of my recollection, the payment of N5 million under reference was a payment I made on May 21, 2015 to a company named Nigel & Colive Nig. Ltd, for the purchase of building materials for my construction site in Abuja (now my present office building).

“At that material time of this commercial transaction and till date, I had no prior knowledge that Justice Ajumogobia had any interest whatsoever in the company.”