The Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, has said his choice of Abdulrasheed Bawa as the chairperson of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) was based on his competence.
Mr Malami, who is also Minister of Justice, said four names, including that of Mr Bawa, were submitted to President Muhammadu Buhari, for consideration on who to head the EFCC.
The Senate, on February 24, confirmed the appointment of Mr Bawa, who was nominated by the President on February 15, as the substantive chairman of the EFCC.
Mr Bawa, 40, a pioneer EFCC cadet officer from Course One of 2005, rose through the ranks to head the Ibadan, Port Harcourt, and Lagos zonal offices of the commission at various times.
However, since Mr Bawa was appointed the fifth substantive EFCC chair, there have been mixed reactions from different quarters due to his relationship with the AGF, who has been alleged to have played a significant role in the removal of the former suspended acting EFCC chairman.
Both Messrs Malami and Bawa are from Kebbi State but hail from different local government areas.
But in an interview with DailyTrust newspaper, Monday, the minister said despite the comments made on his selection of Mr Bawa, none of them challenged his capacity to deliver as head of the country’s leading anti-corruption agency.
He also denied being related to Mr Bawa.
“I am happy that most of the comments made are not on his capacity, Intelligence, competence and associated ability to deliver. His capacity to deliver was never questioned across the nation.
“The question is whether justice has been served, whether public interest has been served having the chairman appointed with a particular regard to his capacity and ability to deliver.
“My answer is yes. He has the capacity, ability and institutional history of the institution to do justice by way of bringing about added value,” he said.
Mr Malami said having headed three operational divisions of the commission, Mr Bawa’s credentials made him to be selected among the names forwarded to the president.
Speaking further, Mr Malami noted that Mr Bawa “has held various authorities, inclusive of serving in various divisions as the head of operations, including Port Harcourt, Lagos and Ibadan, which are adjudged to be the high point.”
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