UPDATED: For the second time, Senate rejects Ibrahim Magu as EFCC chairman

OrderPaperToday – It is the end of the road for Mr. Ibrahim Magu as the Senate on Wednesday rejected his nomination as substantive Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Senate took the decision after another report from the Department of State Security (DSS) surfaced with damning verdict on the suitability of the nominee.

This is the second time the Senate is rejecting Mr. Magu since he was appointed in acting capacity in November 2015, by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Recall that he was first rejected on the 15th of December, 2016 and his earlier rejection was based on a report submitted to the Senate by the Director-General of the Department of State Services (DSS), Mr Lawal Daura which indicted Magu of corruption.

But his name was again resubmitted to the Senate on the 24th of January, 2017, by President Buhari.

Announcing the decision of the Senate, after about 1.30 minutes of grilling by lawmakers.

In a letter signed by an operative of DSS, F.O. Adams on behalf of the Director-General, the Service said the only difference between the old and the new report is the cover note.

In the cover note of the new report, sighted by OrderPaper.ng, the DSS reinstated it’s earlier position, stressing that the Service stands by its earlier claims.

“We want to reiterate our earlier position that we stand by our report, dated 3rd of October, 2016. Everything in the earlier document stands,” part of the cover note of the new report, read.

The tide turned sour for Magu when Senator Dino Melaye (APC, Kogi) drew the attention of lawmakers to paragraph 14, page 5 of the said security report.

Quoting a portion of the report, Melaye noted: “Magu has failed the integrity test and may constitute a liability to the anti-corruption fight.”

Melaye was soon followed by the Senate Deputy Minority Whip, Senator Biodun Olujimi who asked Magu if he was qualified to still lead the anti-corruption commission based on the new report from the DSS.

Magu, who appeared dazed by Melaye’s revelation, lashed out at the DSS and accused it of not giving him a fair hearing in reaching conclusions.

He said: “The DSS report you are talking about, was I given any fair hearing? There is the case of fair hearing. Before you indict me, you ought to have invited me. Up till day, I have not been invited by the DSS to hear my own side of the story. Is that one fair hearing?”

Magu, left the chamber at about 1.38pm after senators began to repeat questions to him.

However, Bukola Saraki, President of Senate in his concluding remarks, urged President Buhari to forward a fresh name to the Senate for confirmation, adding that following the rejection, Magu can no longer act as chairman of the anti-graft commission.

“I want to urge the President to nominate another person since Magu can no longer act in that capacity as the chairman of EFCC.

“Today, democracy has worked. We followed due process. We hope that the executive will send in a new name so that the anti-corruption war can go on,” Saraki said.

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