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Air Force dismisses 2 over invasion of Magu’s farmhouse

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The Nigerian Air Force has dismissed two officers for participating in the invasion of a farmhouse belonging to the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Magu.

The officers, Awua Theophanous and Sunday Paul, were disengaged from the service and handed over to the police after facing disciplinary actions.

The duo and three others, Francis Ochife, Inalegwu Omikpa and Vincent Michael, who is also a dismissed Air Force officer, invaded Magu’s farmhouse in Abuja to find a huge sum of money reportedly buried in a septic tank within the facility.

A police Sergeant, Haruna Sarki, was allegedly killed during the invasion of the farmhouse.

The dismissed Air Force men, while speaking with journalists, explained that they did not know the farmhouse belonged to Magu before the raid.

Theophanous, a 27-year-old father of two said sometime in November 2017, Omikpa met with him at a bar and told him that some stolen money was kept in the farmhouse.

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According to him, Omikpa sought his help on how to recover the funds through the ‘whistle-blowing’ policy so that they would have a share from it.

Theophanous stated that he involved Paul, who contacted an EFCC official, to seek advice on how to recover the money.

He said the EFCC official advised them to be sure of their claim, and ascertain if the money was actually there.

He stated: “I joined Nigerian Air Force in 2012. I was serving at the Logistics Department, Defence Headquarters, Abuja. Omikpa met me at the Mammy market where I was drinking and he told me there was a farmhouse where stolen money was buried.

“In December 2017, I was called to rectify an electrical fault in an office at the Defence Headquarters. While I was there, a senior officer came in and asked Paul to accompany him to the EFCC office to dispatch a letter. I quickly told Paul about the farmhouse and asked him to enquire at the EFCC office how the ‘whistle-blowing’ policy works.

“When he returned, he told me that he spoke with an EFCC official about it and that the man advised him to verify the allegation that money was kept in the farmhouse before the commission would act so that it did not cause it an embarrassment.

“I gave Omikpa feedback. He said the person who gave him the information worked in the farmhouse and that the person was ready to take us to the spot where the money was kept.”

Theophanous, who said he did not know how the policeman was killed, explained that he left the scene when he realised that the police had been alerted to the invasion.

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Timothy Enietan-Matthews

Timothy is a versatile journalist, down to earth with a critical and curious mind.

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