The former acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ibrahim Magu, after months of being suspended from office is being paid half-salary by the authorities.
Magu while on probation, based on the rules of the public service would be paid half-salary pending the determination of his case.
Recall that President Muhammadu Buhari on July 10, 2020, suspended Magu over allegations of insubordination and corruption levelled against him by the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami.
Buhari thereafter set up a presidential panel headed by Justice Ayo Salami to probe the allegations against the commissioner of police.
The Public Service Rules (PSR) states that the Permanent Secretary may place a public officer facing a serious case that may lead to dismissal on suspension.
The rule reads, “Interdiction: when a serious case that may lead to dismissal has been instituted against an officer, the Permanent Secretary may interdict and place him on half-pay pending the determination of the suspension.
“When disciplinary proceeding for a criminal case has been instituted or is about to be instituted against an officer, he shall be suspended from office without salary pending the determination of the case.”
The delay in implementing the Salami panel report has caused Magu his selection for promotion to Assistant Inspector-General of Police and sparked doubts about the Federal Government’s touted commitment to accountability in the public service and the anti-graft war.
The Minister of Police Affairs, Muhammad Dingyadi, while speaking on the issue last month said since the Salami report was submitted to the President, no further communication had been sent to the ministry and the Nigeria Police Force.
He said, “What I know is that the matter (report) has been submitted to Mr President and as far as I know, no communication has yet been submitted to the ministry or police force on this matter. So, we are waiting for the final outcome to be made public.”
Tosin Ojaomo, while speaking on the predicament of his client said, the case was a reflection of the injustice in the country.
“When I learnt of Magu’s replacement, the question I posed to the government was where is the report of Justice Ayo Salami? I also inquired where is the white paper issued thereon? Till today, we are still waiting for the answer,” he told PUNCH.
“I participated in the proceedings of the panel and I saw how most of the allegations levelled against the EFCC boss fell flat during the hearings.
“The issue is even not about the individual involved but the institution and our country; where the law provides for the mode of carrying out a task, it is mandatory things must be carried out in accordance with the law.”
Ojaomo further stated that “nobody is saying Magu cannot be replaced but the question is; was justice done to the man and others? Those who are holding the mantle of authority today should fear more because they have also created an avenue for any person coming after them to use the same means for vengeance.”
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