N13bn Ikoyi Cash: Whistle-Blower, EFCC, Differ on Getting N325m Reward
There were indications that the man who informed the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission of the $43m, N23.2m and £27,800 (N13bn) recovered from an Ikoyi apartment in April, may be given about N325m in the light of the Federal Government’s whistle-blower policy.
The whistle-blower policy states that any whistle-blower whose information leads to the recovery of over N5bn will attract a 2.5 per cent reward.
The acting Chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, who did not disclose how much would be given to the whistle-blower, said the commission was already counselling him on how to spend the money.
Magu, while speaking at the ongoing 7th Session of the Conference of States Parties to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption holding in Vienna, Austria, said the whistle-blower was a man who had “never seen N1m in his life.”
He, therefore, called on Nigerians who want a positive change in the country to take advantage of the whistle-blower policy.
The EFCC boss said aside from contributing to the eradication of corruption, potential whistle-blowers would also benefit from the illicit acquisition by the looters.
Magu said, “We are currently working on the young man because this is just a man who had not seen N1m of his own before. So, he is under counselling on how to make good use of the money and also the security implication. We don’t want anything bad to happen to him after taking delivery of his entitlement. He is a national pride.
“So we encourage more whistle-blowers to come forward with genuine information that will lead to recoveries from looters of public treasuries. That is part of the ways we can put an end to the looting madness in the public sector.
“When they know that they have no place to keep the loot, as all eyes are on them, they will find looting of public treasuries unattractive.”
A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos and presided by Justice Muslim Hassan had on June 7, 2017 ordered the final forfeiture of the total sum of $43,449,947, £27,800 and N23,218, 000 to the Federal Government which means all legal hurdles have been crossed.
The money, which belongs to the National Intelligence Agency, has since been deposited in the Central Bank of Nigeria
However, the whistle-blower has denied having been paid five per cent of the recovered sum.
A lawyer, Yakubu Galadima, who claimed to be counsel for the unnamed whistle-blower, alleged on Friday that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has reneged on the promised fiver per cent.
The lawyer, who spoke with journalists on the premises of the Lagos State High Court in Ikeja on Friday, described as untrue the claim by the acting Chairman of the EFCC, Mr. Ibrahim Magu, that the whistle-blower had been paid referring earlier statement by the commission
Galadima claimed that the whistle-blower, his client had been abandoned, saying the EFCC did not even know his whereabouts let alone counseling him.
“The EFCC does not even know the whereabouts of my client. He is presently living from hand to mouth having been abandoned by the commission.
“We have written to the President and even to Magu himself and we have yet to get any form of response. I even sent Magu an SMS this morning debunking the allegation that my client has been paid; but as I speak, I have yet to get a response from him,” Galadima told journalists.
The lawyer said he had already written a letter dated October 10, 2017, to President Muhammadu Buhari in this regard but had yet to get any response from the presidency.