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Judge’s absence stalls Adegboruwa’s suit against Magu

Ibrahim Magu

Hearing in the suit filed by a Lagos lawyer, Mr Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, against the Acting EFCC Chairman, Mr Ibrahim Magu, suffered a temporary setback on Monday at a Federal High Court as the judge trying the case was absent.

The  case could not proceed as scheduled because of Justice Mojisola Olatoregun’s absence.

He was said to be attending a workshop in neigbouring Togo.

The court, however, fixed Feb. 20 for continuation of trial.

In the suit filed on Jan. 16, Adegboruwa wants the court to direct the Senate not to entertain any further request for the confirmation of Magu as chairman and restrain him from parading himself as the commission’s boss.

Joined in the suit are the Senate, the Attorney General of the Federation, the EFCC and Magu.

In a 39-paragraph affidavit, Adegboruwa, pointed out that Magu, who was appointed on Nov. 9, 2015, had functioned in acting capacity beyond the six months allowed by law.

Adegboruwa contended that since the Senate had refused to confirm Magu as the Chairman of the anti-graft agency he should cease to function in that capacity.

He cited Section 2(3) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission Act which makes confirmation by the Senate a condition precedent to the appointment of the chairman.

He argued that since the section was activated by forwarding Magu’s name to the Senate, he could not defy the decision of the lawmakers, who rejected him.

“Notwithstanding the clear decision of the Senate not to confirm Magu, he has continued to parade himself as EFCC Chairman.

“He also met with representatives of the United States Embassy on Jan. 6, 2017, clearly defying the decision of the Senate.”

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

He also seeks a declaration that given his conduct in office so far, he is not a fit and proper person to function in the office of chairman and that the court should give an order directing Magu to vacate office immediately.

In addition, the lawyer wants the court to declare null and void all actions taken by the EFCC during Magu’s tenure.