By Ishola Balogun
The Director-General, Center for Institutions Reforms in Nigeria, CIRN, Lai Omotola has described the nomination of a 40-year old Abdul-Rasheed Bawa to head the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC. as capable of achieving the required reforms in the anti-graft agency.
Reacting to the development, Omotola applauded President Buhari, saying that the appointment vividly shows that Buhari is committed to making reforms that would springboard Nigeria to higher height in all sectors.
‘President Muhammadu Buhari has demonstrated that he is indeed a man of reforms. By choosing Bawa, he has demonstrated his commitment towards the continuous fight against corruption in Nigeria. He has shown the commitment in two forms: one; he has nominated the youngest man in history to run EFCC, secondly, for the first time in history of EFCC, an operative from the anti-graft agency will run the commission.
“You will recall that during the travails of the former Chairman of EFCC, Ibrahim Magu; when he was being investigated by the presidential panel, CIRN called for an amendment of EFCC Act that would make an insider within the operative to take control of the day-to-day operations and workings of the anti-graft commission. At present, Abdul-Rasheed Bawa is the head of Lagos Zone of the commission. Within a short time, we have seen a lot of reforms he has brought to the zone. He has changed the ambience of EFCC and he has also ensured that operations of EFCC in terms of Investigation are based on specialized departments; meaning that it now operates in a specialized way.
Omotola also said that the appointment shows the belief of the President that youths possess the needed knowledge and the capacity to govern Nigeria effectively.
“President Buhari has demonstrated that his belief in allowing youths to take over the reign of power in Nigeria and this sends a signal that governance would soon be handed over to the younger generation that would take Nigeria to an enviable height in the committee of nations.
Omotola called on the Senate to quickly confirm the nomination of Bawa as the substantive head of EFCC.
“We therefore request the Senate to accept the nomination of Bawa according to the rules of the Senate and we are optimistic that the emergence of the young and vibrant operative who happens to be among the first set of cadet to be enrolled in the commission in 2005 would make all of us proud as it will bring fresh air into the EFCC,” Omotola added.