Magu: Se­nate to Re­view Res­o­lu­tion April 24

Sunday Trust - - FRONT PAGE - By Is­mail Mu­dashir

Sen­a­tors are set to clash with the Vice Pres­i­dent, Pro­fes­sor Yemi Os­in­bajo, over his po­si­tion on the act­ing Chair­man of the Eco­nomic and Fi­nan­cial Crimes Com­mis­sion (EFCC), Mr. Ibrahim Magu, Daily Trust on Sun­day gath­ered.

Os­in­bajo, a few days ago threw his weight be­hind Magu and sug­gested that he (Magu) does not need Se­nate con­fir­ma­tion, to head the agency.

A cross sec­tion of sen­a­tors who spoke to Daily Trust on Sun­day, said the com­ment of the Vice Pres­i­dent would fur­ther worsen the feud be­tween the ex­ec­u­tive and the leg­is­la­ture.

Pres­i­dent Muham­madu Buhari had weeks ago con­sti­tuted a me­di­a­tion com­mit­tee chaired by Os­in­bajo to ad­dress the stand-off be­tween the two arms of gov­ern­ment.

Magu has been re­jected twice by the Se­nate over a re­port by the De­part­ment of State Ser­vices (DSS).

In an in­ter­view, a sen­a­tor said even though Magu is pre­sented 1,000 times for con­fir­ma­tion, they will re­ject him.

“It is funny that the Vice Pres­i­dent is say­ing this. As a pro­fes­sor of law, he should know this and two, as the chair­man of the peace com­mit­tee, he shouldn’t have said this.

“His ut­ter­ances will neg­a­tively af­fect the peace com­mit­tee be­cause one of the is­sues cre­at­ing the feud is the con­fir­ma­tion of Magu. We are say­ing he should be re­placed and he is say­ing, we are wrong. Let me tell you that even if Magu is pre­sented for con­fir­ma­tion 1,000 times, we will re­ject him be­cause he lacks the ca­pac­ity to oc­cupy that of­fice,” he said.

An­other sen­a­tor who also spoke said the com­ment by the vice pres­i­dent an­gered many of them.

“I was not sur­prised when my at­ten­tion was drawn to the re­port cred­ited to the Vice Pres­i­dent be­cause from day one he has been in the fore­front of the cru­sade for Magu’s con­fir­ma­tion. In fact, aside from send­ing Magu’s name for con­fir­ma­tion, all the cam­paigns for it have been from his of­fice. We know this.

“As you know re­fusal of the ex­ec­u­tive to im­ple­ment our res­o­lu­tions is the bane of our re­la­tion­ship. Now he is say­ing this. How will he suc­ceed? Will there be EFCC with­out an Act?”

An­other sen­a­tor, who also did not want to be named said the Vice Pres­i­dent should in­vite the APC cau­cus, rather than an­tag­o­nis­ing them.

“We have three cat­e­gories of peo­ple in the Se­nate. We have those who are against Magu, those who are for him and those who are neu­tral. By his state­ment, Os­in­bajo has spoilt the slim chance of Magu at the Se­nate and the peace com­mit­tee he chairs,” he said.

Mean­while, our re­porter re­li­ably gath­ered that the lead­er­ship of the Se­nate would re­view the res­o­lu­tion on the re­jec­tion of Magu on the 24th of this month.

A source close to the lead­er­ship said, “the meet­ing will be held on Mon­day 24th of this month out­side the Na­tional Assem­bly. A de­ci­sion would be taken on it and other is­sues in­clud­ing the 2017 bud­get. The fol­low­ing day on Tues­day, the is­sue would be tabled be­fore sen­a­tors at an ex­ec­u­tive ses­sion be­fore ple­nary.”

Our cor­re­spon­dents re­port that the law­mak­ers are re­sum­ing from their Easter break on Tues­day, the 25th of this month. The two-week ul­ti­ma­tum given to Pres­i­dent Muham­madu Buhari to sack Magu has elapsed.

The sen­a­tors, on the 28th of last month stood down the con­fir­ma­tion of Res­i­dent Elec­toral Com­mis­sion­ers (RECs) of the In­de­pen­dent Na­tional Elec­toral Com­mis­sion (INEC) over Magu. They said the RECs would not be screened un­less Magu was re­placed.

PHOTO: AFP

A po­lice of­fi­cer blocks Es­ther Yakubu, mother of Grace Yakubu (cen­tre) and Re­becca Sa­muel, mother of Sarah Sa­muel, as they march to the Pres­i­den­tial Villa in Abuja to de­mand for the res­cue of their daugh­ters on Fri­day, dur­ing the third an­niver­sary of the mass ab­duc­tion of 276 school­girls by Boko Haram in Chi­bok, Borno State

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