News

June 4, 2018

EFCC Chairmanship: Court consolidates 12 suits against, for Magu 

EFCC Chairmanship: Court consolidates 12 suits against, for Magu 

Ibrahim Magu, EFCC boss

as Buhari, AGF deny alleged plot to arrest judgment 
By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
ABUJA – The Abuja Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, on Monday, consolidated 12 suits raising legal issues on the continued stay of Mr. Ibrahim Magu as Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

Ibrahim Magu, EFCC boss

Justice Binta Nyako merged the suits following a joint application that was filed by President Muhammadu Buhari and the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN.
Both Buhari and Malami are defendants in all the suit that have been pending before the court since last year.
While eight of the suits are praying the court to declare Magu’s continued stay in office as illegal since his nomination by President Buhari was twice rejected by the Senate, four of the suits are urging the court to hold that Magu could validly remain in office as the Acting head of the anti-graft agency despite Senate’s decision against him.
At the resumed proceeding on the matter, the Solicitor-General of the Federation, Mr. Dayo Apata moved the joint application by President Buhari and Malami for all the suits to be consolidated and decided together since they revolved around same subject matter.
Buhari and Malami who anchored their request on provisions of Order 11 and 26 of the Federal High Court Civil Procedure Rules 2009, said the move was to aimed at obviating the possibility of different judges of the court delivering conflicting judgments on Magu’s issue.
The application was supported by Magu’s lawyer, Mr. Wahab Shittu, who had also filed a similar motion.
However, one of the litigants, Mr. Wale Balogun, opposed the request which he said was an attempt by Buhari and the AGF to “arrest” judgement in his suit which had already been heard and reserved for judgment.
While debunking the allegation, the SGF,  Mr. Apata, told the court that the AGF had since July 5,  sent a letter to the Chief Judge of the High Court requesting for consolidation of the suits.
He said the then CJ, Justice Ibrahim Auta (retd), acknowledged the AGF’s letter on August 3, 2017, and requested all the parties to exercise patience to enable the court to take steps to consolidate the cases.
Apata said a reminder letter was also sent to the current Acting CJ of the court, Justice Abdu Kafarati on January 29, 2018.
He insisted there was no plot to arrest judgment of the court on the issue of Magu’s headship of the EFCC.
In her ruling, Justice Nyako noted that Balogun’s case was heard before the directive from the CJ got to her court.
She said their was need to re-open the case to enable President Buhari and the AGF to make their input in the suit.
Meantime, the Senate which was represented by Mr. Innocent Da’agba did not oppose the request for consolidation.
The 12 consolidated suits were subsequently adjourned till June 27 for mention, even as the court directed all the parties to file and exchange all the necessary process to enable definite hearing of the case.