Lawyer heads to A’Court to challenge ruling retaining Magu as EFCC chairman

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A lawyer in Abuja Mr. Johnmary Jideobi has taken his move to have Ibrahim Magu removed as the acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to the Appeal Court.

The lawyer had earlier in suits filed before Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu of the Federal High Court in Abuja on March 2, 2017, prayed for Magu’s removal.

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But the court in its ruling on December 4, 2019, dismissed his prayers.

Justice Ijeoma, delivering judgment on the suits seeking Magu’s removal had held that a person could continue to act as EFCC’s chairman at the pleasure of the Nigerian President.

She said there was a lacuna in the law that failed to spell out a time limit for an acting tenure. Justice Ijeoma added that section 2(3) of the EFCC (Establishment) Act, 2004, which provides that members and the chairman of the anti-graft agency could only be appointed by the President subject to the confirmation by the Senate, left a lacuna on how long a person could occupy the office of commission’s chairman in an acting capacity.

But in a two-ground notice of appeal, he filed at the Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal on Friday, Jideobi said the lower court erred by dismissing his suit and retaining Magu as the EFCC chief.

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According to him, the lower court wrongly applied the law by refusing to sack Magu and by allowing him to continue serving in an acting capacity for over four years. He said the four years Magu had served, was what he would have been entitled to, if the Senate confirmed his appointment.

Respondents in the appeal are the Senate, the Attorney-General of the Federation, EFCC and Magu.

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