Thursday, 6 July 2017

Osinbajo’s statement on Magu was not FEC's decision – Malami (Listen)

Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, has said that Acting President Yemi Osinbajo, is on his own following his comments on the rejection of Ibrahim Magu as EFCC chairman by the Senate.

In April, Osinbajo had said, that he was in support of the view of Femi Falana, human rights lawyer, that the Executive did not need to send the name of Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), to the Senate for confirmation.

“There is an argument, whether or not we need to present him (Magu) for confirmation and that’s a compelling argument from Femi Falana,” Osinbajo had said.

“His (Falana) argument is that under the Constitution, section 171, and if you look at that section, it talks about the appointments that the president can make. They include appointments of ministers, ambassadors and heads of agencies such as the EFCC. In that same section 171, the Constitution rightly said that certain appointments must go to the Senate such as ministerial and ambassadorial appointments. Those of heads of agencies like the EFCC do not have to go to the Senate. That’s what the constitution says. But the EFCC Act, which of course as you know is inferior, says that EFCC chairman should go to the Senate for confirmation.

“I am sure that even a pocket book lawyer knows that when a legislation conflicts with the constitution, it’s the constitution that prevails. I agree with Mr Falana that there was no need in the first place to have sent Magu’s name to the Senate.”

On Tuesday, the Senate considered the statement and refused to accent to Osinbajo’s request of confirming Lanre Gbajabiamila as the director-general of Nigeria Lottery Commission, saying the confirmation will be made only after the issues of controversy are resolved. The senate also asked Osinbajo to retract his statement and apologize.

(Read Also: Osinbajo’s statement on Magu was his personal opinion – Garba Shehu) 


Fielding questions from reporters at the post-FEC briefing on Wednesday, Malami distanced the Federal Executive Council from Osinbajo’s statement.

“The fundamental consideration about the alleged statement is the fact that at no point ever did the Federal Executive Council sit down to arrive at the decision in one-way or the other as far as the issue of nomination or otherwise is concerned,” Malami said.

The Presidency in a series of tweets however denied that Malami ever made the statement.

However, an audio recording of the interview released  by Premium Times has revealed that Malami made the statement distancing FEC from Osinbajo’s statement.

Listen below:

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