Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Nigerian President sacks EFCC Chair

President Goodluck Jonathan has unexpectedly fired the head of Nigeria’s anti-corruption agency Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
A spokesman for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) said Wednesday that chairwoman Farida Waziri had been fired. Spokesman Femi Babafemi said Waziri had at least another year left in her tenure.
Babafemi says agency deputy Ibrahim Lamurde has been appointed acting chairman. He said he did not know the president’s reason for firing Waziri.
Waziri and a presidential spokesman could not be immediately reached for comment.
Waziri has been criticized by U.S. diplomats in leaked cables for being unprepared and for apparently being controlled by politicians. Others have leveled corruption allegations against her and operatives of the commission, though none have been proven. Farida has been less than a shadow of the previous anti-corruption czar Nuhu Ribadu who was removed by former President Yar’ Adua to prevent same from trying his friends.
Meanwhile reactions are already trailing the sack. Professor Pat Utomi post thus on his facebook page:

"With this change, let me advise the Federal Government that the only way to ensure that the EFCC is effective in fighting corruption, which is the bane of Nigeria's development, is for the executive to give that agency complete autonomy and independence and this can only be done if the law creating the agency is amended to ensure its independence. PU"

However, Mallam Nasir El Rufai former FCT minister has condemned the process of her removal. He reacted on twitter immediately:

"Farida Waziri has been removed by GEJ before the expiration of her term. This is contrary to the EFCC Act and illegal. We must all stand up for rule compliance even if we do not like the victim. We stood up when Nuhu was similarly treated. It is wrong! Farida Waziri was the instrument of my years of persecution by Yar'Adua & GEJ. I don't like her. But that is personal, her removal illegal! The EFCC Act requires GEJ to show cause - insanity, incapacity, not in public interest, etc. No reasons given. She did not resign. WRONG!! All I am saying is that when leaders do not act in compliance with the law, we must question. It is Farida Waziri today. It will be you soon Let us not celebrate this because we think Farida is a scumbag. Let us stand up & question because of non-compliance with the EFCC Act. Farida's tenure is supposed to end in May 2012. My persecution started the day she took office. So I am not her advocate personally. Farida was neither competent nor honest. Trial by headlines was her landmark. Plea bargains with the corrupt her specialty. But Her tenure had not ended, & if it is to be prematurely terminated, it must be done in accordance with the law. They did it to PCA Salami too .This GEJ administration revels in gross violating the law & surprised that Nigerians are resorting to taking the law into their own hands!! . When leaders break the law with impunity, they should expect that sooner or later, every citizen will join & settle disputes via self-help!! 


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