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EFCC: Lawyer to withdraw suit challenging Bawa’s eligibility

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A lawyer, Osuagwu Ugochukwu, is set to withdraw the suit he filed before a Federal High Court challenging the eligibility of the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Abdulrasheed Bawa.

Ugochukwu made the confirmation to The Punch on Thursday following Bawa’s promotion and confirmation by the Senate.

“Since he (Bawa) has been promoted and has been confirmed by the Senate, there is no need for the suit any longer,” he said.

In the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/196/2021, Ugochukwu maintained that Bawa, who is a member of the pioneer Course 1 of the EFCC Cadet Officers, was a Level 13 officer. However, the EFCC Act states that in appointing a chairman of the EFCC, such an appointee must be at least an Assistant Commissioner of Police or equivalent.

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In the originating summons filed by Ugochukwu, it was argued that Section 2 of the EFCC Act states that the composition of the EFCC shall consist of the 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.”

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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.”

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A day after the suit was instituted, however, Bawa was promoted thereby making him eligible for the appointment.

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