Abubakar Malami, Nigeria’s federal attorney-general and minister of justice, insists that only President Muhammadu Buhari has the utmost power to determine the fate of the tainted acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ibrahim Magu.
Malami, a senior advocate of Nigeria, said this on a Channels TV programme titled, Question Time over the weekend.
Magu has been rejected twice by the senate for confirmation as the EFFC substantive chairman following a damning report against him by the DSS.
The Nigerian Senate rejected the tainted anti-corruption boss for a 2nd time on Wednesday, March 15, 2017. The Senate cited his abysmally poor performance at the “job interview” and a security report by the country’s secret police which said that Magu was living an obscenely corrupt lifestyle and had failed the “integrity test”.
When the federal attorney general was asked if it was proper for Magu to continue in acting capacity despite being rejected twice by the Senate, he said, “I cannot comment on the position of my office but one thing I can tell you clearly is that power is vested in the President constitutionally and it is the President that has the prerogative and the right to make any conclusion that arises from there.”
When probed further if Magu’s integrity challenge would not affect the anti-graft war, Malami said he wouldn’t, “like to pre-empt the position of the presidency over that.”
Malami, however, denied reports that the anti-corruption war was selective.
Meanwhile, the Senate has said that the report by the DSS sent to Malami on Magu’s integrity, has vindicated the upper chamber.
Chairperson of the senate committee on media and public affairs, Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi, in a statement on Saturday, March 25, 2017 said the documentary evidence made available to the AGF by the DSS had justified the Senate.
“Following several calls made to me today by journalists seeking my comments on the leaked report on Mr. Ibrahim Magu, which was more damning than the one submitted to us, I can only say that myself and my colleagues have been vindicated,” Senator Abdullahi said.
“From that report, which is now public, it is obvious that the DG DSS even tried to give Magu soft landing in the report that was sent to the Senate. The recent report is messier and shows that our decision not to confirm his nomination was right.”