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New EFCC Boss Abdulrasheed Bawa: A Fair and Thorough Professional Sunday Adebayo

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Abdulrasheed Bawa

It is no longer news that Abdulrasheed Bawa is on his way to becoming the new chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFFC as nominated by President Muhammadu Buhari, pending the Senate’s approval.

This relatively unknown young man appears to be the perfect match for the country’s fight against corruption, both in the low and high places, going by his antecedents.

 

 

 

This was contained in a letter by President Buhari on Tuesday, February 16th to the Upper Chamber of the House of Assembly, as a matter of constitutional urgency, to confirm Bawa in accordance with Paragraph 2(3) of Part 1, CAP E 1 of the EFCC Act 2004.

 

 

 

A lot of controversies have surrounded the office of the anti-graft agency over various tenures, from preferential treatment to not following due process, unfair judgment in its investigations, cherry-picking who to take to the slaughter, and the likes. That seems to be the very ‘vices’ Bawa has come to nip in the bud.

 

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For the first time in history, after so much drama surrounding the sack of the immediate past chairman, Ibrahim Magu, an officer who rose through the cadet of the agency is going to be leading the war against corruption, this is vital as he already knows and understands the terrains, which is going to be key in its leadership operating style going forward.

 

 

Efcc

So, age and youthfulness are not just the things that stand Bawa out in this highly revered position. Bawa who rose from the pioneer cadet of the Commission is a maven when it comes to financial crimes investigations, having gone through several pieces of training in the agency institution in addition to his Degrees in Economics, Masters in International Relations and Diplomacy while currently pursuing another degree in Law.

 

 

 

Those who know him well tell tales of his bravery, dedication, fairness, and balance in his investigation expertise and well known for seeing through any case he hits with his teeth. His thorough stand for the truth, interest in hearing both sides before taking a stand are some of the features that distinguish him in his wealth of experience in the institution. The 40-year-old was the brave brain behind the famous Deziani crude oil swap, Atlantic Energy, and petroleum subsidy fraud investigations by the country’s formidable anti-corruption institution, recovering millions of dollars worth of properties in the UK, Switzerland, U.K., U.A.E., U.S.A., Canada including 92 of such assets in Nigeria and billions of naira, prosecuting many companies.

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The former Ibadan-zonal head of the EFCC was said to have run the notorious yahoo boys in the area out of town, before moving to Port Harcourt to wage war against oil bunkers. He has also been part of the prosecution of advance fee fraud, bank fraud, official corruption, money laundering, and other economic and financial-related crimes.

 

 

 

Bawa who has been in the anti-corruption fight for about 17 years now is also said to be putting to bed the impression that some people are untouchables as he is said to be taking the war to the house of ‘the bouillon chief’, former governor of Lagos and a Chieftain of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, Bola Ahmed Tinubu. He is also chesting the investigations against the former governor of Niger State, Muazu Babaginda Aliyu, who is currently facing trial.

 

 

 

Prior to his appointment, Bawa who is the youngest ever to lead the EFFC, the Commission has been without a substantive chairman since Ibrahim Lamorde in 2015. The Immediate past chairman, Ibrahim Magu operated in an acting capacity from 2015 to 2020, after the Senate failed to confirm him and was later removed in controversial circumstances

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Nigerian Police Brutalizes Guardian Reporter, Eniola Daniel In Oshodi

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The Lagos Police led by commander Jejeloye today beat a journalist with The Guardian reporter Eniola Daniel, stripped him and destroyed his phone.
The police had gathered at the Ladipo Auto spare parts market, Apapa-Oshodi expressway at the early hour on Sunday  to destroy shops along the road.
The reporter said he got a call from the company’s security supervisor Bello that the Lagos Taskforce were burning tyres and destroying shops along the road, and the reporter got to the scene past 10.am and started videoing the raging fire set on the highway but, in less than three minutes, a man on plain uniform suddenly approached him and slapped him from behind continuously, other security men bearing arms ran to support him, punching the reporter and dragged him into the stationed Black Maria.
  The reporter brought out his Identity Card and showed the police, but that did not stop them from beating him.
He said one of the policemen called him a bastard.
He was received after several beatings.
The Lagos State Police Public Relation Officer (PPRO) Muyiwa Adejobi, has however promised to get to the root of the matter.

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Insecurity: How Abdulrazaq Unifies Diversity To Drive Harmony

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Special Assistant on Security to the Kwara State Governor, Honourable  Moshood Gobir, in a session with NAOSRE’s  Rowland ‘Shuwa, explains governor Abdulrazaq’s intelligent unification of ethnic  diversity in Kwara to achieve harmony

 

Amid the security challenges ravaging the country and the seeming helplessness of the Chief Security Officers of each state of the federation, the Special Assistant on Security to the Kwara State Governor, Hon. Moshood Gobir, has described Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq as the most proactive governor on security matters in the North central Nigeria.

In a press release personally signed by Hon. Gobir and made available to National Association of Online Security Reporters, (NAOSRE), Kwara state chapter, the Special Assistant on Security lauded the leadership qualities of the state governor especially in the area of security.

He said, “Nigeria is presently facing serious security challenges on all fronts ranging from Boko Haram menace in the northeastern states to the cattle rustling and banditry in the north central states and the horror of herdsmen kidnapping in the southwest, but as the Special Assistant on Security to His Excellency, the Governor of Kwara State, I make bold to say that Mallam Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq is the most proactive Governor on security matters in the whole of north central states and one of the best in this regard in the whole country. His efforts have ensured that Kwara State indeed remains the State of Harmony.

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“Just yesterday, (Monday) there was a serious high level security meeting at the instance of His Excellency, where all the stakeholders in security affairs in the state were present. Issues like how to make “Operation Harmony” joint taskforce more effective and efficient day and night, and other sundry efforts that will ensure that Kwara State continues to enjoy the peaceful status quo for which we are widely known were discussed.”

He stressed that all and sundry can see and feel the impact of the Governor’s commitment to security in Kwara state and urged all Kwarans and residents of Kwara to join hands and compliment the efforts of Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq by being law abiding at all times in order for Kwara State to live up to its repute as the State of Harmony.

Hon. Gobir however, warned trouble makers and criminally minded individuals to steer clear of Kwara State as all the security agencies in the state are at alert to respond adequately and appropriately to any attempt to breach the security of lives and properties of Kwara residents. 

READ  Level 13 EFCC Officer Equivalent To ACPolice? Drama As Lawyer Drags Senate To Court Over Confirmation Of Bawa As EFCC Boss

He further stressed that Ignorance of the law is not a tenable excuse where the security of the people is being infringed upon.

The Governor’s aide also commended all the security agencies in the state for the cooperation enjoyed so far in the efforts at securing lives and properties of Kwara residents.

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Level 13 EFCC Officer Equivalent To ACPolice? Drama As Lawyer Drags Senate To Court Over Confirmation Of Bawa As EFCC Boss

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— Seeks Interpretation of ‘Equivalent of An Assistant Commissioner of Police’ In Relation To Bawa’s Appointment
— As Group Urges Senate Not To Confirm Bawa Over Corruption Allegation
The new Chairman-designate of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Abdulrasheed Bawa, who is expected to face Senate screening soon, is beset by a legal hurdle following a controversy surrounding his rank.
It was learnt that a lawyer, Osuagwu Ugochukwu, has filed a suit before the Federal High Court in Abuja seeking to stop the Senate confirmation of the chairman-designate, The Punch reports.
The court document marked FHC/ABJ/CS/196/2021 was received at the Office of the Senate President on Thursday, according to an acknowledgement copy obtained by our correspondent on Friday.
It was learnt that the leadership of the Senate, the Presidency and the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation were holding talks as to how to address the issue in order to avoid a repeat of the last screening exercise where the then nominee, Ibrahim Magu, was rejected twice by the Senate.

Bawa, EFCC Chairman Designate

Bawa is also believed to be a kinsman of the AGF, Abubakar Malami (SAN). Malami played a major role in the removal of Magu and reportedly recommended Bawa’s appointment to the President, Muhammadu Buhari.
The new nominee, who is a member of the pioneer Course 1 of the EFCC Cadet Officers, is a Level 13 officer. However, the EFCC Act states that in appointing a chairman of the commission, such an appointee must be at least an Assistant Commissioner of Police or equivalent.
The EFCC Act, however, may not have envisaged that a member of the core staff of the EFCC would become chairman and does not state what the equivalent of an Assistant Commissioner of Police would be in the EFCC cadre.
Bawa, who joined the EFCC in 2005, has been in service for 15 years and is believed to be a seasoned detective. However, there has been controversy over what the equivalent of a Level 13 officer in the EFCC would be in the police.
In the originating summons filed by Ugochukwu, it was argued that Section 2 of the EFCC Act states that the EFCC shall have a 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.”
Ugochukwu asked the court to determine whether a Level 13 officer is the equivalent of an ACP.
The plaintiff subsequently sought two reliefs, including “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” and “an order of perpetual injunction restraining the first defendant (Senate) from confirming the appointment of the second defendant (Bawa) as chairman of the EFCC.”
Meanwhile, the Centre for Anti-Corruption and Open Leadership has written a letter to the Senate asking the upper legislative chamber not to confirm Bawa as the EFCC chairman.
This is according to a letter titled ‘Don’t Confirm Abdulrasheed Bawa’s Appointment as EFCC Chair until He Clears His Name of Corruption Allegation; Appeal to the Nigerian Senate,’ which was signed by the Executive Director of CACOL, Debo Adeniran.
CACOL said Bawa was alleged to have diverted 224 forfeited trucks while he was the Port Harcourt zonal head of the commission and is also rumoured to be a cousin of the AGF.
The group further argued that Bawa is not up to the level of an ACP and is thus not qualified to be chairman of the EFCC.
“The EFCC law is an Act of the National Assembly, hence the Senate must not overrule itself by breaching a critical provision in the appointment of EFCC Chairman.
“It is against this background that CACOL is appealing to the Senate to please take the pains to dig deep into Mr Abdulrasheed Bawa’s record of overall performance, as well as that of corruption allegations levelled against him.
“Howbeit, if the rumour making waves in some quarters, which has also been confirmed by some sections of the media, is anything to go by, we would say Nigerians’ hope for a corruption-free society has been dashed with the nomination of Mr Abdulrasheed Bawa as the chairman of the EFCC,” the letter read.
Bawa, who was accused of diverting recovered assets, was, however, absolved of any wrongdoing by the EFCC in a statement signed by its spokesman, Mr Wilson Uwujaren, on Tuesday

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