The power tussle between members of President Muhammadu Buhari’s kitchen cabinet has been blamed for the Senate’s rejection of the confirmation of Ibrahim Magu as chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
BusinessDay reliably gathered that the security report upon which Magu was rejected, was authored by the Director General of the Department of State Services (DSS), Lawal Daura, in disregard to the National Security Adviser (NSA), Babagana Monguno, the political head of all security agencies in the country.
This is the first time the nomination of chairman of the anti-graft agency has been rejected since the establishment of the body in 2003.
Announcing the rejection at Thursday’s plenary after a closed-door meeting that lasted for over two hours, Senate President Bukola Saraki, referred the screening of the other four nominated executive members of the Commission to the Committee on Anti-Corruption and Financial Crimes, chaired by Chukwuka Utazi, a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) senator.
Those expected to appear before the panel include: Nda Moses, Lawan Mamman, Galadanci Imam and Adeleke Rafiu.
Confirming the development, Senate spokesperson Aliyu Sabi, told newsmen immediately after the closed-door session that Magu’s confirmation was rejected due to security report.
“The Senate wishes to inform the public that based on available security report, the Senate cannot proceed with the confirmation of Ibrahim Magu as Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
“The nomination of Ibrahim Magu is hereby rejected and has been returned to the President for further action,” the lawmaker told journalists.
Magu became acting chairman of the Commission since November 2015 after President Buhari sacked his predecessor, Ibrahim Lamorde.
But it was only in July 2016 that the then Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, sent in a letter to the Senate requesting that Magu be confirmed.as chairman of the anti-graft agency.
Unlike him, his predecessor, Lamorde was confirmed as the EFCC chair within 34 days at the Senate. Goodluck Jonathan nominated him on January 12, 2012 and he got the confirmation of the lawmakers on February 15, same year.
Metrobusinessnews gathered that Magu who was at the Senate on Thursday for his screening, accompanied by his aides and officials of the Commission, was allowed into the chamber midway into the closed-door session but followed through the back door.