The Commissioner of Police, Lagos State yesterday allayed fears of residents on suspected explosive substance which was allegedly dropped in a manhole in one of the Streets in Agege area of the State, saying there was nothing to worry about.
The development had led to residents scampering for safety following the bomb scare, but rising from the Monthly Security Council Meeting chaired by Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, the government urged the people to go about their normal businesses.
The State’s Commissioner of Police, Mr. Fatai Owoseni, who briefed journalists at the end of the meeting alongside service commanders of security formations and top government functionaries in the state, said security agencies responded swiftly to the development and found out that contrary to rumour, the substance was just pieces of thrash dropped in manholes.
Eminent lawyer and human rights activist, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, has asked the Federal High Court, Lagos, to restrain Mr Ibrahmi Magu, from parading himself as the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
Adegboruwa is also asking the Senate not to entertain any further request for the confirmation of Magu as Chairman of the EFCC since he has so far defied and rubbished the earlier decision of the Senate of December 15, 2016, wherein the Senate declined to confirm his nomination as Chairman of EFCC. The defendants in the suit are The Senate, the Attorney-General of the Federation, the EFCC and Ibrahim Magu.
In a 39 paragraphs affidavit deposed to by Adegboruwa, he traced his history as a student leader, a human rights activist and pro-democracy campaigner, which credentials he stated qualified him to file the suit. The lawyer traced the appointment of Magu back to November 9, 2015, contending that he has been functioning in acting capacity as EFCC Chairman, beyond the six months allowed by law.
It was contended in the suit that since the Senate has rejected Magu as substantive Chairman of EFCC, he could not thereafter be functioning as acting chairman, illegally, citing section 2 (3) of the EFCC Act, which makes confirmation by the Senate, a condition precedent to the appointment of the EFCC chairman. It was argued that since the President activated section 2 (3) of the EFCC Act by forwarding the nomination of Magu to the Senate, he could not defy the decision of the Senate, which rejected Magu for the substantive appointment. Adegboruwa attached the Votes and Proceedings of the Senate for December 15, 2016, wherein it was stated clearly in paragraph 1 thereof as follows:
“The Senate also deliberated on the screening of the nominees for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC) as it relates to the Security Report on them.
Following the Security Report on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Chairman, the Senate decided not to confirm the Chairman and communicate the same to Mr President, Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federation.
The Senate also decided to refer the other nominees to the Anti-Corruption Committee for screening since there was no Security Report on them.”
Adegboruwa stated that notwithstanding the clear decision of the Senate not to confirm Magu, he has continued to parade himself in office as EFCC Chairman, such as when he met with representatives of the United States Embassy on January 6, 2017, clearly defying the decision of the Senate. The lawyer then asked the court to restrain the Federal Government of Nigeria, the EFCC and all other authorities, from recognizing, treating or in any other manner dealing with Magu as the Chairman of EFCC, either in acting or substantive capacity. He also sought for a declaration that given his conduct in office so far, his lifestyle and his arrogance to defy the decision of the Senate, Magu is not a fit and proper person to function in office as chairman of EFCC. Consequently, Adegboruwa asked the court to give an order forthwith directing Magu to vacate and relinquish his office as EFCC Chairman, whether in acting or substantive capacity. The lawyer also contends in the suit that all actions taken by the EFCC under the illegal tenure of Magu, especially charges and information filed in court, are illegal, null and void.
The reliefs being sought in the suit are as follows:
“A. A DECLARATION, that under and by virtue of section 2 (3) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission Establishment Act 2004, the 4th Defendant, Ibrahim Magu, cannot continue to function in office as Acting Chairman of the 3rd Defendant, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, after the decision of the 1stDefendant, The Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, which rejected the nomination of the 4th Defendant as Chairman of the 3rd Defendant.
B. A DECLARATION, that the failure, omission or neglect by the 4th Defendant to vacate and relinquish his office as Acting Chairman of the 3rd Defendant, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, after the rejection of his nomination by the 1st Defendant, has disqualified him from further consideration for confirmation as the substantive Chairman of the 3rdDefendant by the 1st Defendant, The Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
C. A DECLARATION, that the 2ndDefendant, the Honourable Attorney-General of the Federation, and through him the Federal Government of Nigeria, are bound by the decision of the 1stDefendant, the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, rejecting the 4thDefendant, Ibrahim Magu, as Chairman of the 3rd Defendant, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and cannot continue to treat, recognize, deal with or deploy the 4th Defendant as Acting Chairman of the 3rd Defendant.
D. A DECLARATION that the 4thDefendant, Ibrahim Magu, is not a fit and proper person to lead the 3rd Defendant, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, as its Chairman, either in its acting or substantive capacity.
E. A DECLARATION the 4thDefendant, Ibrahim Magu, is not and cannot be the Acting Chairman of the 3rd Defendant, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
F. A DECLARATION, that the 3rdDefendant, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, its servants and officers are bound by the decision of the 1st Defendant, the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, rejecting the 4thDefendant, Ibrahim Magu, as Chairman of the 3rd Defendant, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and cannot continue to treat, recognize or deal with the 4th Defendant as its Acting Chairman.
G. A DECLARATION that all actions taken by the 3rd Defendant, especially charges and information filed in various courts, during the period when the 4thDefendant, Ibrahim Magu, acted in excess of his legal term as Acting Chairman thereof, are illegal, null, void and invalid.
H. AN INJUNCTION restraining the 4th Defendant, Ibrahim Magu, whether by himself, his servants, agents or privies, or in any manner whatsoever from functioning in office as or from performing or continuing to perform the duties of or from holding himself out or parading himself as the Acting Chairman of the 3rd Defendant, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
I. AN INJUNCTION restraining the 3rd Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, whether by itself, its servants, officers, agents or privies, or in any manner whatsoever from holding out or parading, treating, recognizing or in any other manner dealing with the 4thDefendant, Ibrahim Magu, as its Acting Chairman.
J. AN INJUNCTION restraining the 1st Defendant, whether by itself, its respective members, its servants, agents, officers or privies from receiving, entertaining, countenancing, considering, deliberating upon or in any other manner acting upon any request, letter, application or demand for the approval, confirmation or endorsement of the 4thDefendant, Ibrahmi Magu, as Chairman of the 3rd Defendant, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
I. AN INJUNCTION restraining the 2nd Defendant, and through him the Federal Government of Nigeria, from holding out or parading, treating, recognizing, deploying or in any other manner dealing with the 4th Defendant, Ibrahim Magu, as Acting Chairman of the 3rd Defendant, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
J. AN ORDER, forthwith directing the 4th Defendant, Ibrahim Magu, to vacate, relinquish and surrender his office as Acting Chairman of the 3rd Defendant, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.”
No date has been fixed for hearing of the suit, which was filed at the Ikoyi Registry of the Federal High Court on Monday, January 16, 2017.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo yesterday raised the alarm that in no distant future, the country would be in grave danger if it continues to rely on oil as its major source of revenue generation.
The sad reality that crude oil will soon become useless is staring Nigeria in the face and as such, “we must be smart and act intelligently and fast,” he said.
The vice president gave the warning when he visited Gbaramatu kingdom in Delta State as part of his peace mission to the Niger Delta region, in furtherance of the federal government’s quest for lasting solutions to the challenges in the region.
Last year witnessed a resurgence of the devastating activities of the Niger Delta militants who almost crippled oil production in the region.
Speaking in Gbaramatu kingdom yesterday, Osinbajo regretted that fire incidents from pipeline vandalisation had claimed the lives of thousands of persons between January and June 2016, during which the country recorded over 1,447 incidents of vandalisation.
Speaking to a large crowd after meeting behind closed doors with leaders of Gbaramatu at the palace of the Pere of Gbaramatu kingdom, Oboro Gbaraun II Aketekpe, the vice president asked the people of the region to recognise the fact that the future is full of challenges for the oil industry.
He said, “In another 20 to 30 years, our oil won’t be as precious as it is today and that is reality? America has stopped buying oil from us. All the countries of Asia that buy oil from us are building alternative means of power, China and Japan are developing electric cars. In fact, Japan has more charging stations than petrol stations. Solar power is getting cheaper.
“The Niger Delta of today is one where aside environmental degradation, between 1998 and 2015, over 20,000 persons have died from fire incidents arising from breaching of the pipelines.
“To prepare for a great future for the Gbaramatu kingdom, three things must happen: we must recognise the unique environmental challenges the Niger Delta is facing, we must also recognise that the Niger Delta is a special economic zone for this nation so we must treat it as a special development zone”.
This, he added, entails that the federal and state governments as well as the National Assembly, NDDC and civil societies representing Niger Delta must come together on a round table and map out a strategy for rapid development.
“There is no excuse for not planning together. The federal government cannot solve the problem of Niger Delta. It is impossible for the FG to do it alone. The state should devote substantial portion of its budget to this special project”, the vice president quipped.
He further observed that the critical areas the federal government was bothered about was infrastructure, even as he hinted that “in the 2017 budget, we have provided for the commencement of the Lagos – Calabar rail way which will go through Delta.”
He continued: “We are working with the Chinese on this project. When I leave here we will visit the site of the Maritime University. The president has directed the ministry of petroleum to work quick to see to the realisation of all of the objectives of implementing this crucial educational institution.
“Establishing this university has passed the second reading in the National Assembly and I know we have the commitment of the members of the national assembly to fast track this bill so that the maritime school will be completed as soon as possible”.
Osinbajo explained that the maritime university which is expected to start fully in September this year and other government projects cannot become functional without enough revenue which is being frustrated by militants and pipeline vandals.
“If there is no revenue, we are deceiving ourselves. There must be revenue and it can only come when there is peace. There should be commitment to peace,” he stated.
According to him, already, the PAN Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF) had submitted a detailed list of 16 issues for dialogue that would help in ascertaining key development priorities, noting that “it is an important working document that represents an excellent road map to the future of Niger Delta.”
On the cleanup of oil producing communities in the Niger Delta, Osinbajo said, “For the cleanup not be a waste of money, we must enforce strict environmental standard for the oil producing companies. And all our communities must prevent vandalisation which is also a major source of environmental degradation”.
The vice president who also addressed stakeholders at the conference hall of the Petroleum Training Institute, Effurun, observed that it was unfortunate that despite the huge contribution of the Niger Delta to the development of the country, there was little to show for such.
“No Nigerian can be proud with the state of development in the Niger Delta; we are all beneficiaries from resources from the region but, we cannot have instability and be able to carry out speedy development of the region,” he said.
Osinbajo reiterated that President Mohammadu Buhari was committed to the development of the region, saying, “the issues at stake are very clear, this is not time for negotiation, it is time to act and we know the issues, we must all prepare for a future that will not be dependent in oil resources.
“The Lagos-Calabar railway project is in the 2017 budget and when completed, it will benefit all the people of the Niger Delta, the Maritime University will come on stream, I can assure you that it is a done deal, we must do it; Ports are revenue generating, so plans are on to develop them but, the issue is how do we fund the projects?” the Vice President continued, reiterating, “the President is an honest man and my coming here for this programme is clear evidence that the Niger Delta is being carried along.”
The vice president also met with the Olu of Warri Kingdom, HRM Ogiame Ikenwoli I during the visit. He was accompanied by Delta State governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, Minister for Petroleum (State), Ibe Kachikwu and other top government functionaries on the visits.
· External reserves rise by $1bn in two weeks
- Ex-senate President, Former Enugu Speaker, Others Set To Join APC
- Professor, two others die in UNIMAID suicide bombing
- Total becomes official sponsor of AFCON
- External reserves rise by $1bn in two weeks