The Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, has admitted recommending Abdulrasheed Bawa for the chairmanship of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, among four names which were submitted to the Presidency.
Speaking with Daily Trust, Malami said he recommended Bawa to the Presidency because of “his high level of dedication and capacity.”
Malami noted that contrary to reports that he singlehandedly picked Bawa to be the chairman of the EFCC, four names were submitted to the president for consideration and Bawa was subsequently picked.
He said, “I am happy that most of the comments made are not on his capacity, intelligence, competence and associated ability to deliver. His capacity to deliver was never questioned across the nation.
“The question is whether justice has been served, whether public interest has been served having the chairman appointed with a particular regard to his capacity and ability to deliver.
“My answer is yes. He has the capacity, ability and institutional history of the institution to do justice by way of bringing about added value.”
Malami said having headed three operational divisions of the commission, Bawa’s credentials made him to be selected among the names forwarded to the president.
The AGF noted that Bawa “has held various authorities, inclusive of serving in various divisions as the head of operations, including Port Harcourt, Lagos and Ibadan which are adjudged to be the high point.”
SaharaReporters had on March 1 exclusively reported that the AGF had begun moves to also put in an attempt at the 2023 presidency.
Malami’s bid, it had been gathered, would rely heavily on funds from the EFCC under Bawa, as Malami used his influence in the Presidency to ensure Bawa emerged.
He had been instrumental in the manner the former acting EFCC chairman, Magu, was sacked from office, after having years of discord with Magu.
As part of his grand plot to achieve his 2023 ambition, the AGF had also fought to ensure that President Muhammadu Buhari appointed Bawa, despite detailed investigations indicting the 40-year-old of fraudulent acts.
SaharaReporters had in February reported that a 13-page investigation report by the EFCC, which indicted Bawa who was then the Port Harcourt Zonal head, was forwarded to President Buhari in 2019 but the President failed to read or act upon it.
The report, titled, ‘Investigation Report – Re: Alleged Case of Conspiracy, abuse of office and criminal diversion of Federal Government Properties’, in which the suspect was Abdulrasheed Bawa, detailed how Bawa was recommended for disciplinary actions.
It had been exposed that the report was forwarded to the President’s office, but the AGF influenced how it was dumped and not acted upon by President Buhari.
Only recently, the Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, Prof Itse Sagay, had warned that he was not comfortable with the fact that Malami and the new EFCC Chairman, Bawa, share the same state of origin.
He had expressed fears about the influence Malami would have on Bawa which may impair the activities of the commission.