By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
An Abuja based constitutional lawyer, Mr. Ugochukwu Osuagwu, on Tuesday, withdrew a suit he filed before the Federal High Court in Abuja to challenge the eligibility of the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Abdulrasheed Bawa.
The Plaintiff had in the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/196/2021, contended that Bawa, who is a member of the pioneer Course 1 of the EFCC Cadet Officers, was a Level 13 officer.
He argued that the EFCC Act expressly provided that in appointing a Chairman of the EFCC, the appointee, must at least, be an Assistant Commissioner of Police or equivalent.
In his Originating Summons, the Plaintiff maintained that Section 2 of the EFCC Act, provides that the composition of the EFCC shall consist of the Chairman who shall be the Chief Executive and Accounting Officer of the Commission; be a serving or retired member of any government security or law enforcement agency not below the rank of Assistant‐Commissioner of Police or equivalent; and possess not less than 15 years cognate experience.
He urged the court to among other things, determine whether a level 13 officer is the equivalent of an ACP.
Besides, the Plaintiff sought two reliefs that included; “A declaration that the 2nd Defendant (Bawa) who is a Grade Level 13 public service officer and not an Assistant Commissioner of Police or its equivalent is not qualified to be the chairman of the EFCC”.
As well as, “An order of perpetual injunction restraining the first defendant (Senate) from confirming the appointment of the second defendant (Bawa) as chairman of the EFCC.”
While the Senate was cited as the 1st Defendant in the matter, Bawa was sued as the 2nd Defendant.
Meanwhile, the Plaintiff said he decided to withdraw the suit which was already assigned to Justice Taiwo Taiwo for hearing, considering the fact that Bawa had since been promoted to the rank of ACP and had lso confirmed by the Senate.
The notice of discontinuance he filed before the court on Tuesday, read: “Take notice that the Plaintiff wholly discontinues the suit against the Defendants”.