– Nigeria’s AGF and justice minister, Malami, has reacted to Sagay’s allegation that he may interfere in the new EFCC boss’s work
– Malami attacked the senior lawyer over the allegation, describing the professor as a “confused old man”
– Contrary to Sagay’s allegation, Malami said he never interferes in the duties of all the agencies under his ministry but supports them to succeed
The appointment of Abdulrasheed Bawa as the new chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has led to a war of words between the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN) and Professor Itse Sagay.
Professor Sagay, the chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC), had earlier expressed concerns that Malami, as a “powerful politician”, may interfere in Bawa’s work, Legit.ng previously reported.
The PACAC chairman described Malami as a politician who could hamper the anti-corruption war of the federal government if allowed to control the affairs of the commission.
You are a confused old man – Malami fires back
In his reaction, Malami descended heavily on the senior lawyer, describing him as “a confused old man whose vision is beclouded by speculations and guess works”.
ThisDay reported that the “salvo” fired by the AGF was contained in a statement released by his media aide, Umar Gwandu.
Malami said Sagay’s submissions regarding the new EFCC appointment are marred by “conflicting statements and confused speculations”.
In what he described as “the highest of confusion”, the AGF said that in one breath, Sagay showed great optimism with Bawa’s appointment, while in another, he portrayed himself as a “pessimist for a speculative future”.
Malami said Sagay should not be worried about the new leadership of the EFCC unless he has skeletons in his cupboard.
I support agencies under me to succeed – Malami
Rejecting the allegation of interference, Malami said he has been known to be supportive of government agencies under the Ministry of Justice, to achieve greater success.
The AGF reiterated that he never interfered in the affairs of any agency under the Ministry of Justice.
The meeting was also attended by the minister of justice, Malami.
The president’s meeting with Bawa came barely 24 hours after he was confirmed as the new anti-corruption czar by the Nigerian Senate.
Nurudeen Lawal is a Legit.ng journalist passionate about fact-checking/verification journalism. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Literature-in-English from Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun State. As Politics Editor, Nurudeen mostly writes on Nigeria’s political and socio-economic developments. He has attended different workshops, conferences and training on fact-checking and digital reporting, among others. Learn more about him on Twitter, @Nurudeen Lawal_