The plot to sabotage the Senate confirmation of Ibrahim Magu as Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) after his re-nomination by President Muhammadu Buhari thickens as not less than seven state governors have been implicated as being part of the grand plot.
The irony is that as expected all the governors involved are those said to be currently under one investigation or the other by the anti-graft agency. Also in the conspiracy are ex-ministers and governors with cases to answer at the EFCC.
According to the report, one of the seven governors is from the South-East, two from the North, two from the South-West, while three are from the South-South, with one vowing to stop Magu’s confirmation, even if it means ’emptying the vault of his state’.
According to the Nation:
“Magu’s travail stemmed from a deep plot within and outside the government. The rejection of his candidature on December 15 without subjecting it to plenary consideration was part of the plot fuelled by some powerful forces.
“At least about seven serving governors and their godfathers were involved in lobbying which led to the rejection of Magu.
“These governors are three from the South-South, two from the South-West, two from the North and one from the South-East. In fact, one of them has been threatening to open the vault of the state to stop Magu.
“Some of these governors are unhappy that the EFCC was closing in on them. Some are fighting a proxy war because their godfathers have been touched by the EFCC. And a few others felt disappointed that their assets have been seized by the commission.
“These governors decided to prevail on Senators from their states to block Magu’s consideration. What happened on December 15 was purely an ambush. Decision at the Executive Session was announced to the public without tabling Magu’s fate at the plenary.”
While Magu’s opposition camp continue their plot, a pro-Magu group seem to have emerged. A northern governor is said to have launched a campaign to get the acting EFCC chairman to be confirmed.
“This governor has been doing a yeoman’s job to save Magu. He believes the removal of Magu might significantly slow down the anti-corruption war.
“This governor does not mind if Magu goes after him tomorrow. He has been telling officials in the presidency and APC leaders that Magu’s achievements represent the true anti-corruption agenda with which the party came to power.”
This is happening just as some Senators who initially opposed the confirmation are said to have now backtracked from their earlier stance. This will become evident when the Senate resumes from Christmas break.
According to one of the pro-Magu Senators:
“Some of us have got more insights into the inter-play of factors which made the Senate to turn down Magu’s nomination. The issue is complex and it is more of a personality matter which the Senate ordinarily ought not to be dragged into.
“If the candidate is re-presented, we will certainly support him. Technically, Senator Ali Ndume was right that that the necessary parliamentary procedure was not followed in rejecting Magu.
“We had a consensus that we cannot proceed with the confirmation of Magu but we did not table it at the plenary as expected. There was a procedural error because of the larger agenda.”