NIGERIA’S senate has conformed President Muhammadu Buhari’s nominee Abdulrasheed Bawa as the substantive chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) despite stiff opposition to his appointment.
Under controversial circumstances, President Buhari had nominated Mr Bawa, the head of the Lagos zonal office to head the EFCC but immediately, there were several petitions, linking him with corruption. It was also pointed out that Mr Bawa was not senior enough for the position, having not reached Level Grade 14 in the civil service.
In addition, it is claimed that Mr Bawa, 40 was only nominated because he is related to the attorney-general Mallam Abubakar Malami, although this has been vehemently denied. With all of this controversy swirling around him Mr Bawa appeared before the senate this morning for screening and after a heated session was cleared to assume duty.
During the session he reacted to a plethora of questions posed by senators on his readiness for the job, given his age and working in a complex society like Nigeria. Addressing concerns of lawmakers, Mr Bawa assured them that he would bring his experience to bear on the job having joined the agency in 2014.
Some senators who took turns to address the nominee pointed out some areas that he should concentrate on, saying transparency in the conduct of affairs of the agency was paramount in the restoration of sanity. After he answered all the questions put to him, senate president Senator Ahmad Lawan declared him accepted.
In his remarks, Senator Lawan, apologised to other lawmakers who could not be allowed to speak for want of time. He sought for the consent of the lawmakers to confirm the nominee, saying he answered all their questions satisfactorily.
Senator Lawan said: “The senate committee considered the nominee of President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday. The nominee answered questions by the distinguished Senators.
“This is a true reflection of what happened, Senate hereby confirmed the nomination of Abdulrasheed Bawa as the chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.”