EFCC Denies Soliciting Ex-Accountant General to Indict Minister

Ahmed Idris
Ahmed Idris google

A detective with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mahmud Tukur, has debunked the accusation of promising leniency to the former Accountant General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris, in exchange for implicating the former Minister of Finance and others.

In a statement to the Federal Capital Territory High Court on February 1, 2024, the former Accountant General of the Federation claimed that the EFCC had tricked him into admitting to the accusations.

Specifically, the former AGF claimed that the EFCC had expressed their desire to utilize him in order to target the Minister of Finance and certain governors for receiving derivation funds.

Idris and his co-defendants are on trial for 14 charges of stealing and criminal breach of trust involving N109.5bn.

Idris, along with Godfrey Akindele, Mohammed Kudu Usman, and Gezawa Commodity Market and Exchange Limited, was arraigned by the EFCC in July 2022.

At the proceedings, Tukur, the second prosecution witness in the trial-within-trial, refuted the claim that the commission had made such a promise to Idris.

Following the objection raised by Idris's counsel, Chris Uche (SAN), alleging that his client did not make statements to the EFCC voluntarily, the court ordered a trial-within-trial.

Led by EFCC counsel, Oluwaleke Atolagbe, Tukur maintained that all 13 statements involving Idris and his lawyers were made voluntarily. Additionally, he stated that the ex-AGF was interviewed in the presence of his lawyers before submitting 11 statements at various times.

Tukur stated that two out of the 13 confessional statements were given willingly, with Idris choosing to waive his right to have a lawyer present.

During the cross-examination by the ex-AGF’s lawyer, Chris Uche (SAN), Tukur stated that the EFCC followed a standard procedure to obtain a statement from a suspect.

However, the witness admitted that the EFCC did not send a letter of invitation to Idris after his second statement. The witness stated that he was unable to determine if Idris' statement in Kano on May 10, 2022, was made in the presence of his lawyer as he was not present.

When questioned about offering the ex-AGF a soft-landing, Tukur refuted the allegation as "absolute falsehood".

The trial judge, Justice Yusuf Halilu, set the adjournment for the trial-within-trial continuation on May 15.

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