Thursday, December 15, 2016


16th December, 2016

The Nigerian Senate yesterday rejected the appointment of Ibrahim Magu as the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).      

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) is nonplussed by this development. It is an act of vengeance and a shameless anti-people decision. The rejection of Magu’s appointment by Senate is a declaration of hostilities against the anti-corruption crusade. The Nigerian Senate has just revealed its true colour as corruption’s undisputed numero uno Weapon of Mass Destruction (WMD).

Senate has decided to take its pound of flesh for Magu’s no nonsense stance in EFCC’s role in the war against corruption. But the Nigerian Senate has been too clever by half. The Nigerian people are not stupid morons. They know why our lawmakers are baring their fangs.

Nigerians know that the same EFCC under Magu is behind the exposure of alleged corrupt dealings of the Senate president whose forgery case is still in court. Magu is being punished for daring the Senate president. In acting capacity since November 2015, Magu’s screening which had been pending since July, 2016 was billed for last Thursday 8th December but it was postponed again till yesterday. Was the procrastination not a hidden message to the EFCC boss? “Back off and you will be confirmed. Persist and you will never be confirmed!”

Although yesterday’s rejection may have put the last nail in the coffin, Nigerians need to know Senate’s modus operandi. This Senate believes that the executive arm of government must play ball even at the expense of the masses or face the consequences. Senate feels threatened by the war against corruption because its hands are not clean.

We remind Nigerians of the ping-pong game on the 2016 budget. Senate found one excuse after another to frustrate the presentation of the 2016 budget to the detriment of the Nigerian people. Patriotism was sent to the winds and the real purpose of legislation which was to serve the people was ignored by Senate members.

It is noteworthy that Senate was actually hijacked ab initio for the singular purpose of frustrating President Buhari’s administration. Powerful forces had correctly predicted that Buhari would go all out for the jugular of corrupt elements in society. These powerful forces are now using an hijacked Senate to fight back.

The signs in the horizon are ominous. Senate is being used to fight the Buhari administration. Half of his ambassadorial nominees were recently rejected by Senate. The same Senate has rejected nominees known to have criticized Senate at one time or the other. This Senate has shown beyond any reasonable doubt that it is frustrating the current war against corruption.

This Senate has shown that it only cares for the interest of its members and not that of the Nigerian people. Despite the current recession, it purchased 108 exotic Toyota Land Cruiser vehicles at the whopping cost of N31.5 million per car (totaling N3.6 billion) for its members. This is an act of insensitivity and a crime against poor Nigerians. This is in spite of getting car loans for its members in August 2015! Even the price of the vehicles was allegedly inflated because each vehicle costs N17 million only, ceteris paribus.

Ten new exotic cars were delivered to Senate Deputy President in December 2015. The Senate president got more earlier. To circumvent extant laws, Senate is desperately amending the anti-corruption law. It sought immunity for its leadership. It is also feverishly engaged in stripping the president of his executive powers in virtually all matters simply because Buhari has remained adamant in his war on corruption.

MURIC calls on civil society to rise against this hijacked Senate. We charge the arrow head of civil society, the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), to do the needful. Workers must be mobilized at the appropriate time to make it impossible for the National Assembly to work against the interest of the masses. We warn that the jamaheer are doomed if Senate is allowed to frustrate the current war against corruption.

We invite religious leaders, church clerics and Imams to mobilize their followers for a showdown with this greedy Senate. They are behind the hunger and starvation being faced by Nigerians. They are responsible for all our economic woes. A morally bankrupt NASS cannot represent the electorate. A non-violent people’s revolution targeted at the NASS has become expedient.   


This reminds us of Professor Wole Soyinka’s recent reference to Nigerians as ‘stupid’ and ‘morons’. We believe that Soyinka was grossly misunderstood. Those words were vituperations compelled by the docility of Nigerians in the face of massive fraud, monumental corruption and unequalled oppression. In other climes, massive demonstrations at the NASS after those shocking revelations would have forced its leaders to resign.  

Soyinka is shocked that Nigerians fail to know their real enemies. Those words were meant to express disdain for our nonchalance and passivity thereby jogging us to action. They were wake up calls. We must show this Senate that we are neither ‘stupid’ nor ‘morons’.

Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

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