- Tinkers with NACC as new name for mother agency
The last may not have been heard of the lingering face-off between the Nigerian Senate and the acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr. Ibrahim Magu, as the lawmakers may have begun fresh moves to curtail the powers of the country’s foremost anti-graft agency.
The Point gathered that a fresh plot is being hatched by the Senate to merge EFCC with the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission and the Code of Conduct Bureau. Plans to merge the three anti-graft bodies were mooted in past years, but never eventually implemented.
The Senate, upon resumption from vacation on Tuesday, it was learnt, decided to revisit the alleged plan to merge the three agencies. A source at the EFCC told The Point that efforts were now being made by some powerful lawmakers to once again bring the merger issue to the front burner in the Senate, “because the Senate wants to put the final nail on Magu’s confirmation.”
It was further learnt that the lawmakers had started looking for all possible avenues responsibility of ensuring that the relevant laws establishing the three anti-graft agencies were amended for the purpose of the proposed merger plan.
The source added that the moves were to curtail the seemingly overwhelming powers, which the chairmen of the three agencies currently wield.
“You see, if they succeed, then, the EFCC chairman’s office would have been reduced to just a director’s status. The same thing will be applicable to the ICPC and CCB under the proposed arrangement. “But by the new arrangement, EFCC would only be after advance fees fraudsters, economic crimes and other relevant criminalities involving public office holders and government appoin – tees, while ICPC would be saddled with the task of checking corrupt practices among civil servants and allies and CCB would be tasked with overseeing integrity test for the public office holders in the country,” he said.
But a source within the agency told The Point that the senators’ alleged fresh moves to merge it with the other two agencies were already heightening tension among the top echelon of the anti-graft body.
“Since the faceoff between EFCC and the Senate started, how many arrests have you heard that the EFCC has made? Everybody here is worried, because we don’t know what will become of our future in this place, especially those of us who are staff of the agency.
Where do we go from here?” the source said. When The Point contacted the acting EFCC Chairman, Magu, on the phone over the alleged moves by the Senate to merge the agency with the others, he said, “I am not aware of that, but even at that, what do you expect me to say? I am a police officer.
They can only sack me from EFCC, but definitely not from the Police Force. So, if EFCC job comes to an end, I can always return to my first love, the Nigeria Police Force.”