Saraki, 10 other senators, dragged to court for participating in Magu’s screening

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[Abuja] The Senate President, Bukola Saraki, and 10 other members of the Nigerian Senate have been sued by a Lagos businessman, Mr. Raji Rasheed, for their participation in screening which led to the non-confirmation of the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr. Ibrahim Magu.

The Plaintiff filed a suit at the Federal High Court Abuja, seeking the nullification of the screening.

Due to Saraki and the 10 other Senators being investigated by the EFCC as at the time of screening, the businessman said that they should not have participated due to conflict of interest. He added that the court should disqualify Saraki and the other Senators from further participating in the screening of Magu.

The defendants in the matter are Saraki, Senators Godswill Akpabio, Jonah Jang, Aliyu Wammako, Stella Oduah, Theodore Orji, Rabiu Kwankwaso, Ahmed Sani. Danjuma Goje, Joshua Dariye and Adamu Abdullahi.

Others are the Clerk to the National Assembly, the Senate, the Attorney-General of the Federation and the Acting EFCC chairman.

He said the court  should declare the screening of Magu on the 15th day of December 2016 without first referring him to the appropriate committee of the Senate as illegal, null, void and of no effect whatsoever.

The plaintiff, through his counsel, Mr. Inibehe Effiong,  sought the following reliefs: “An order to set aside the screening the screening, votes, proceeding and resolutions of the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (the 13th Defendant/ Respondent) of Wednesday, 15th March, 2017 as they relate to the nomination or appointment of Mr. Ibrahim Mustapha Magu (the 15th Defendant/Respondent) for the position of Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

“A declaration that the 1st Defendant is disqualified by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) and the Senate Standing Orders, 2015 (as amended) from presiding over or participating in the deliberation, screening and voting on the nomination of the 15th Defendant for the position of Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission due to the apparent conflict of interest arising in the 15th Defendant’s active role in his ongoing trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal.

“A declaration that the 2nd to the 11th Defendants are jointly and severally disqualified by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) and the Senate Standing Orders, 2015 (as amended) from participating in the deliberation, screening and voting on the nomination of the 15th Defendant for the position of Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission due to the apparent conflict of interest arising from their pending or ongoing cases of financial and economic crimes given that the 15th Defendant is coordinating and supervising the investigation into or prosecution for the said financial and economic crimes.

“A  declaration that the 1st to the 13th Defendants jointly and severally violated the Senate Standing Orders, 2015 (as amended) when they participated in the screening, deliberation and voting on the first or earlier nomination of the 15th Defendant in the 13th Defendant on the 15th day of December 2016 by not declaring their pecuniary interests in view of their pending or ongoing cases of financial and economic crimes given that the 15th Defendant is coordinating and supervising the investigation into or prosecution for the said financial and economic crimes involving the 2nd to 11th Defendants.

“A declaration that the first and earlier rejection of the nomination of the 15th Defendant for the position of Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission by the 1st to the 13th Defendants on the 15th day of December 2016 without first referring the 15th Defendant to the appropriate committee of the 13th Defendant and at an executive or closed session instead of an open session is illegal, null, void and of no effect whatsoever.

“A declaration that the 15th Defendant is entitled to be accorded fair hearing by the 1st to the 13th Defendants during screening, deliberation and voting in the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on his nomination for the position of Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.

“An order of injunction restraining the 1st Defendant from presiding over or participating in the screening, deliberation and voting on the nomination of the 15th Defendant for the position of Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.

“An order of injunction restraining the 2nd to the 11th Defendants from participating in the screening, deliberation and voting on the nomination of the 15th Defendant for the position of Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.”

THE PAGE had earlier reported that the Nigerian Senate, under the leadership of Sen. Bukola Saraki, rejected the appointment of Mr. Ibrahim Magu as the chairman of the country’s Economic Financial Crimes Commission, at a plenary session on March 14, 2017 after he was alleged of certain misconducts by reports given by the Department of States Service.




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