EFCC: Senate reads letter seeking Magu’s confirmation
Senate President Bukola Saraki yesterday read a letter seeking confirmation of the chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Ibrahim Magu and four others, more than three weeks after it was received from the presidency.
The four other persons listed for confirmation as members of the commission are Moses Ndasule, Mamman Lawan, Imam Najib Galadanci and Adebayo Rafiu Adeleke.
The letter dated 17th June, 2016 was written by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo when he acted as president during the vacation of President Muhammadu Buhari. The stamp on the letter showed it was received by the office of the President of the Senate on June 22, 2016.
The Senate embarked on two weeks recess the following day on June 23, without reading it.
Sources said Saraki read the letter after meeting with principal officers of the Senate during their daily pre-plenary meeting where it was extensively discussed.
Osinbajo in the letter said section 3 of the EFCC's Act provides that the Chairman and members of the commission other than the Ex-officio members shall hold office for a period of four years and may be reappointed for a further term of four years and no more.
The vice president said: "I hope the screening will, as usual be carried out expeditiously by the Distinguished Senate."
But a senator told Daily Trust that “their confirmation would be difficult because of the on-going impasse between us and the executive. How can they be fighting us and expect us clear their nominees?”
When contacted, the Deputy Leader of the Senate, Senator Bala Ibn Na'Allah said the delay in reading the letter was as a result of Sallah break.
"There was nothing we could do since we were on recess because the president’s letter can only be read at the plenary," he said.
On their relationship with the Presidency, he said, we will continue to cooperate with the executive as far as good governance is concerned. We don't have any issue with the President, we only have minor issues with some of the people he appointed," he said in a phone interview last night.
When contacted, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Rules and Business in the fifth Senate (2003-2007), Senator Umaru Tsauri, said communications from the president were supposed to be treated with all urgency.
“Normally the communication of the President is read on the floor of the Senate, a day after it was submitted and action is taken on it immediately. But if there are issues on the communication, it would be addressed during executive session," he said.
Senate’s spokesman, Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi, couldn’t be reached for comment last night.
Our correspondent reports that President Buhari’s communication on the budget of CBN, NNPC, FIRS, Customs and 34 others is yet to be read by the Senate President.
The letter was read at the House of Representatives by the Speaker, Yakubu Dogara on Tuesday.