Senate celebrates as court affirms power to reject Ibrahim Magu
The Senate has said it has been vindicated on the rejection of the appointment of Mr. Ibrahim Magu as Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
Chairman of the Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Senator Aliyu Sabi-Abdullahi, who briefed journalists in Abuja on Thursday, announced that a Federal High Court had ruled that the upper chamber of the National Assembly had the powers to confirm or reject his appointment.
Sabi-Abdullahi made a copy of the ruling available to journalists, a copy of which was obtained by our correspondent.
The Senate’s spokesperson said, “We are pleased with this judgment and we want to salute Nigeria’s judiciary for always rising up to the occasion to protect our democracy and deepen our democratic processes.”
The Senate had rejected Magu’s appointment bases on a report by the Department of State Services which disqualified him.
The lawmakers had also placed an embargo on confirmation of appointments made by President Muhammadu Buhari which required legislative approval, to protest against Presidency’s position that some appointments did not require Senate’s approval.
Sabi-Abdullahi stated that the embargo would remain until Magu is replaced.
The suit, with Number FHC/ABJ/CS/59/2017, was filed by a lawyer, Oluwatosin Ojaomo, against the Senate President, Bukola Saraki; and the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN.
Justice John Tsoho of the FHC sitting in Abuja on January 15, 2018, ruled on the issues raised by the plaintiff before striking out the suit.
Delivering the ruling, Tsoho said, “The plaintiff raised two issues in the written address for determination, to wit: Whether or not the 1st defendant (Saraki) can reject a valid statutory appointment made by the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to the Office (of the Chairman) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in accordance with the provisions of the EFCC (Establishment) Act, 2004.
“Whether or not the 1st defendant is bound by the provisions of the EFCC Act, 2004, with respect to the confirmation of any appointment made by the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to the Office of the Chairman of the EFCC.”