Court strikes out suit challenging Magu’s position

Court strikes out suit challenging Magu’s position

Monday, February 20, 2017 4:32 pm

Ibrahim Magu


A Federal High Court on Monday in Lagos struck out a suit challenging the position of Mr Ibrahim Magu as Acting Chairman of the EFFC.
A rights activist, Mr Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, had filed the suit, seeking an order to restrain Magu from holding the office in acting capacity.

Adegboruwa is also asking the senate not to entertain any further request for the confirmation of Magu as chairman.

The defendants in the suit are the senate, the attorney-general of the federation, the EFCC and Magu.

At the resumed hearing Justice Mojisola Olatoregun, struck out the suit, following Adegboruwa’s application to withdraw the suit.

Mr Tayo Oyetibo, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) and Counsel to the applicant, while addressing the court, explained that his client had decided to discontinue with the case.

Oyetibo said that soon after he took over the case, he had to convince the applicant on the need to withdraw the case to encourage Magu in his current war against corruption

“There is need to give Magu the opportunity to continue the anti-corruption campaign of the present administration and since this case may affect his confirmation, it is better to discontinue it,” he stated.

Confirming Oyetibo’s application, Adegboruwa maintained that he was persuaded by his counsel, to withdraw the suit on the grounds that Magu would do a good job in his approach to the anti-corruption drive of the administration.

The Defence Counsel, Mr Wahab Shittu, who did not oppose the application for withdrawal, argued that the move would boost the anti-corruption war.

Olatoregun accordingly struck out the suit as prayed.

Adegboruwa in his 39-paragraphs affidavit in support of his earlier application for dismissal of Magu, traced his appointment back to Nov. 9, 2015.

The applicant argued that Magu had been functioning in acting capacity as EFCC Chairman, beyond the six months allowed by law.

Adegboruwa had argued that since the Senate had refused to confirm Magu as substantive chairman of the EFCC, it remained an illegality for him to continue to function in acting capacity.

Citing the provisions of Section 2 (3) of the EFCC Act, Adegboruwa argued that the section made confirmation by the senate a condition precedent to the appointment of the EFCC chairman.

He had argued that since the provision of Section 2 (3) of the EFCC Act was activated by forwarding the nomination of Magu to the Senate, he could not defy the decision of the Senate, which rejected him for the substantive appointment.

Adegboruwa also stated that in defiance of the decision of the senate not to confirm Magu, he had continued to parade himself in office as EFCC chairman.

He said that an example of such an act was when he met with representatives of the U.S. embassy on Jan. 6 this year, clearly defying the decision of the senate.

Adegboruwa had, therefore, asked the court to restrain the EFCC and all other authorities from recognising, treating or in any other manner, dealing with Magu as the Chairman of EFCC, either in acting or substantive capacity.

He had also sought a declaration that given his conduct in office so far, he was not a fit and proper person to function in office as chairman of the EFCC.

Consequently, Adegboruwa had asked the court to give an order forthwith, directing Magu to vacate and relinquish his office as EFCC Chairman, whether in acting or substantive capacity.

The applicants had also sought a court order, declaring void, all actions taken by the EFCC under the tenure of Magu, especially charges and information preferred in court. (NAN)

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