By Wahab Akanji, Lagos
Lack of quorum by members forced the Senate to defer the screening and confirmation of the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Ibrahim Magu till next week.
The Senate had, at its plenary on Wednesday, announced the decision to screen Magu on Thursday, after receiving President Muhammadu Buhari’s request for confirmation of the EFCC boss since July.
Explaining why the screening exercise failed to take place on Thursday, Deputy Senate Leader, Bala Ibn Na’Allah, said the date was shifted to allow a broader participation of senators in the screening.
Magu was at the National Assembly complex on Thursday in company with a number of EFCC officials, waiting to be invited into the chamber to face the lawmakers’ grill. The Senate leadership later sent in a word, informing him of a shift in date.
Addressing reporters shortly after the day’s plenary, Na’Allah said attendance at plenary was low and that many senators who were away had called to demand a shift in date to allow them participate in the exercise.
Justifying the shift in date, Na ‘Allah said it would be wrong to ignore the request by the absentee senators for participation, stressing that owing to the strategic position of the EFCC chair, there was need to allow contributions from as many senators as possible.
The senator further explained that there were three previous attempts at screening Magu, but that for one reason or the other, the Senate could not sit on those three occasions.
He however confirmed the Senate’s preparedness to conduct the screening and confirmation exercise, latest by Thursday next week.