The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) says it is not directly involved in the payment of whistleblowers.
The commission said this in reaction to the controversy generated by Ibrahim Magu, acting chairman of the commission, on the whistleblower who tipped off the agency on the monies stashed in an apartment at Ikoyi, Lagos, has been paid.
Magu had said the whistleblower had become a millionaire.
He also said the EFCC was “currently working on the young man because this is just a man who has not seen one million naira of his own before. We don’t want anything bad to happen to him after taking delivery of his entitlement.”
But Yakubu Galadima, who identified himself as the lawyer of the whistleblower, countered Magu’s claims, saying the commission did not know the whereabouts of his client.
Chidi Odinkalu, human rights lawyer, also disclosed that the whistleblower had been serially detained.
But in a statement on Friday, the commission said what Magu meant was that the man had become a millionaire based on the incentive of the whistleblower policy.
Under the whistleblower policy, the individual who gives information is entitled to between 2.5 percent and 5 percent.
Wilson Uwujaren, EFCC spokesman, who issued the statement said Magu was misunderstood.
“What Magu said at the 7th session of the council of state parties to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption in Vienna, Austria, was that citizens should be encouraged to embrace whistleblowing because of the incentives attached,” the statement read.
“To illustrate this, he stated that the gentleman who provided the information that triggered the huge recovery at Osborne Towers in Ikoyi was already a millionaire based on the incentive in the whistleblower policy where information providers are entitled to between 2.5 and 5 percent of the recovered sum.
“Magu never said that the young man has been paid. The commission is not even directly responsible for the payment of rewards to whistleblowers.
“There is also no controversy about the exact amount recovered in the operation which was streamed live, the first of its kind, and witnessed by the whistleblower, security at the towers and representative of the agency which claimed ownership of the money.”