Osinbajo Erred On Magu's Portfolio in EFCC

Related image

 By Ajayi Bamidele 
Lagos Island

The attention of notable Nigerians have been drawn to the recent publication credited to the Nigerian Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, describing Mr. Ibrahim Mustapha Magu as the most senior staff of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, which is false.

The report was claimed to have emanated from an authority whose position is to uphold the true tenets of democratic principles. Its position is expected to represent the desire of the people in the fight against corruption and injustice and expose it in the interest of the citizenry.

The much expected protection of the rule of law and respect for the three arms of government should prevail over what was said to have been jaundiced by the repeated comments of the Nigerian Vice President, whose tenacity to protect the embattled Acting Chairman of the EFCC, Mr. Ibrahim Magu, has been described as compromised.

The statement of the Vice President was then regarded as a clear indication that the present administration was bent on holding tenaciously on to an individual with who the Nigerian Senate declined his confirmation as the substantive Chairman of the EFCC.

As a prelude to the Number Two citizen of Nigeria though, Mr. Magu Mustapha Ibrahim happens to be the most senior police officer posted to serve in the EFCC on secondment but that does not make him a staff of the Commission.

Setting the records straight, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission is an establishment of the National Assembly, 2003, 2004 and the Commission has three internationally recognized and trained serving Directors, a position that is equivalent to Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG) in the Federal Civil Service ranking.

Suffice it to note as well that the Commission has at least 20 serving deputy directors who are staff of the EFCC, a rank that is equivalent to that of a Commissioner of Police (CP) in the Nigeria Police Force.

The Commission also has additional 20 Assistant Directors, who are equivalent to the rank of a Deputy Commissioner of Police in the Nigeria Police Force. That is the category where the embattled Action Chairman of the Commission, Mr. Ibrahim Mustapha Magu, falls into.

Social pundits now wonder how a Commission that has over 43 personnel, senior to Magu, left out his superior in the Nation's Federal Civil Service ranking and appointed a junior ranking officer as the chief executive, possibly to spite his seniors in the Federal Civil Service working in the Commission.
 Another question that always comes to mind is the question on whether it is a crime to assume leadership position without being given a corresponding responsibility to measure with it, as in the present case.

Another school of thought also argues on the wisdom of having those people trained without giving them corresponding leadership responsibility to perfect the knowledge acquired from their overseas training, meaning that such investment on them was a waste.

I want to suggest that the EFCC, having come of age, and having three internationally respected Directors who are at the rank of AIG, and 20 deputy directors, as well as an additional 20 Assistant Directors, should henceforth be allowed to start piloting the affairs of the Commission.

Why the continuous posting of Police Officers who are supposed to assist their colleagues in the fight against insurgency in the North East and protecting the internal security of the country, being their constitutional responsibility, to an Anti-Graft Commission that has more capable hands to effect the much  needed change in the fight against Corruption in  the Nigeria?

I suggest further that the Act of the National Assembly that established EFCC should be reviewed to give room to professionalism in the nation’s ministries, departments and agencies where core technocrats in the field would be allowed to Man such offices without prejudice.

My humble opinion goes to the respected office of the Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, to reconsider his position on Magu's portfolio in the EFCC.
 It is high time the Commission’s capable hands were allowed to lead in the executive cadre, because I know the VP is a promoter of due process that will not support injustice where trained officers in a commission will be allowed to pilot the affairs of the organization.
 Inasmuch as I know it is not a crime to labour and become a senior personnel in an organization, we expect the All Progressives Congress (APC) led government to allow peace to reign in the EFCC and let one of the 43 senior personnel to Magu, who is even not a staff of the Commission, to start piloting the affairs of the nation's leading Anti-Graft Commission.

A thought echoed in my mind, wondering what's so special in the EFCC that Mr. Magu refused to return to his core duty at the Nigeria Police Force. I want to suggest if Mr. Magu Mustapha Ibrahim likes the EFCC, he should resign from the Nigeria Police Force and convert to the be a staff of the EFCC.

I urge the National Assembly to amend the Act that established the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to enable it to function effectively, whereby the position of the chief executive of the Commission should be ceded to one of the most ranked officers in the Commission.

It is a development that will engender dedication and commitment to the cause and reduce grumbling among the staff where a junior officer from another agency is brought in to superintendent the operation of a Commission that has internationally acknowledged technocrats in crime fighting and anti-corruption drive.
 The Presidency and the National Assembly are hereby called upon to act fast and correct this injustice meted out to the top officers of the EFCC who have served and contributed immensely to the growth and development of the Commission.




Related Post