Senate’s rejection of Magu in order, says Adegboruwa

Ibrahim Magu

Ibrahim Magu

Lagos lawyer, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, has described the rejection of Ibrahim Magu as the substantive chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) by the Senate as “in order.”

Adegboruwa said the Senate’s decision is a manifestation of the independence of the legislative arm of government, which is not bound to accept all proposals and nominations of the executive.

He stated that it is wrong to build our institutions, especially the anti-corruption agencies, around individuals, adding: “We should strengthen the institutions, rather than the individuals.”

Adegboruwa also said the anti-graft agencies, especially the EFCC, need a general overhaul, which can only be achieved through a new man in the saddle, stating: “The issues plaguing the EFCC, like disregard for the rule of law, corruption and abuse of human rights, leading to constant, but avoidable deaths of citizens in its custody, obnoxious bail conditions as a means of keeping citizens in custody for longer periods of time, extortion and torture of suspects are some of the reasons why there is need for a new hand that can overhaul the agency.”

He also said the senate based its decision on security report, which is now in the public domain, and in that regard, cannot be faulted. 

“The issues raised in the report of the DSS in relation to Magu cannot be overlooked, as in similar or less weighty circumstances. The EFCC, under Magu, has preferred criminal charges against such suspects, followed with media blitz.

“After all, the reason that Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia is in court, facing trial is for her inability to account for alleged her lavish possessions.

“If an ex-policeman is living in a luxurious N40million apartment and cruising in private jets, he should be put in the dock, as he has done to others.”

Adegboruwa stated further: “Prior to Magu’s appointment, a serious allegation of corruption was made against his predecessor in office, but we have never heard of any effort made by the EFCC since Magu took over on that case.

“Generally, anti-corruption agencies require leaders with sound knowledge of law and due process. The tenure of Magu as acting chairman of EFCC has been marked with too much controversies, such that it may be necessary to relieve him of such conflicts.”

He also reacted to opinions suggesting that Magu would remain in acting capacity, despite his rejection by the senate, saying: “Once the President has presented a candidate to the senate for confirmation and the candidate has been rejected, such a candidate cannot function in office in acting capacity again, as that would give the impression that Magu was picked for a hatchet job.

“Also, the EFCC is too sensitive to be headed by a rejected candidate. It would mean simply that its operations have become illegal, after December 14, when the senate rejected Magu, and it can no longer file charges in court or indeed arrest any citizen.”



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