Connect with us

Politics

Probe panel: Buhari sacked me for refusing to implicate Jonathan, Saraki, Ekweremadu, others – Uwajeh

Published

on

…As President says Apart from Abacha, other Heads of State have no love for Nigeria – Pres. Buhari***

Sacked Special Investigator to the Special Presidential Investigation Panel on Recovery of Public Property, Evang. Victor Uwajeh, has accused President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration of bias in its anti-corruption crusade.

Uwajeh claimed he was sacked less than two months after his appointment because the administration had a mindset about who should be prosecuted at all costs.

In a statement issued yesterday in Abuja, Uwajeh said he was specifically detailed to trace the assets of the wife of former President Goodluck Jonathan, Patience, Senate President, Bukola Saraki, his deputy, Ike Ekweremadu, former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, and many others.

The statement read: “It was the procedure of the panel to courier documents to me from Nigeria for dispatch to various agencies in the United Kingdom and worldwide. Soon after I realised that the panel had a mindset towards certain individuals and groups by the documents it sent to me.

“Documents sent to me from Abuja to dispatch to the Serious Fraud Office and Home Office, Metropolitan Police, FBI and EUROPOL had the names of the following senators: Senate President, Abubakar Bukola Saraki, Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, Sen. Albert Bassey Akpan and Sen. Stella Adaeze Oduah.

“I was also given a list which includes former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, Femi Fani- Kayode, Sen. James Manager, Governor Nyesom Wike, Senator Jonah Jang, and Patience Jonathan, among others.

Meanwhile, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, yesterday, chided Uwajeh, for claiming that the federal government relieved him of his job because he refused to take on highly placed government ‘opponents’.

Malami said: “In the first place, the federal government of Nigeria did not even need the services of the suspect since we have a lot of institutions and personnel who can effectively handle such an assignment.

“Uwajeh suppressed the fact that he was a suspect standing trial apparently to impress the panel to engage him. This was unfortunate.

“But if Uwajeh wants to impress the world with the story he is now bearing, the fundamental question he should answer is whether indeed, he was being prosecuted by the office of the AGF for fraud, impersonation and forgery long before now.

“We cannot use a suspect of fraud to do investigation of those who have been accused of fraudulent activities. It would be wrong and unreasonable to do so.

“The investigator should also tell the world if he did at any time disclose to anyone on the panel before and after his engagement about the pendency of his forgery and fraud case in court.”

“So, the idea of leaving established institutions of government and law to engage a private investigator does not arise just as the disingenuous claim that he was disengaged because he refused to implicate certain persons does not hold water.’’

In the meantime, President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday said those who mismanaged Nigeria’s economy in the past, through fraudulent electricity projects and misuse of revenue earnings from oil, had no love for the country.

‘‘One of the former Heads of State was bragging that he spent more than 15 billion dollars on power in Nigeria. Where is the power?’’ the President asked, without mentioning any name.

The president stated this when he received members of the Buhari Support Organisations (BSO) led by the Comptroller-General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ali, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Most of the electricity projects, President Buhari spoke about were awarded during the second term of the Obasanjo administration(2003 and 2007), and the result has only  been creeping into the national grid, to the extent that 11 years after, Nigeria is yet to enjoy stable power supply.

President Buhari urged Nigerians to remain vigilant and ensure that only ‘‘people of conscience are in-charge of governance at all levels’’ as the nation prepared for general elections in 2019.

‘‘One of the former Heads of State was bragging that he spent more than 15 billion dollars on power in Nigeria. Where is the power?’’ the President asked.

‘‘I challenge anybody to check from Europe, America and Asia; between 1999 and 2014, Nigeria was producing 2.1 million barrels of crude oil per day at an average cost of 100 dollars per barrel and it went up to 143 dollars.

‘‘When we came it collapsed to between 37 and 38 dollars and later was oscillating between 40 and 50 dollars.

‘‘I went to the CBN Governor, with my cap in my hand, and asked if we had savings. He told me we had only debts, no savings. Some of the roads were not repaired since the Petroleum Trust Fund (PTF) days.

‘‘I don’t care the opinion you have about Abacha but I agreed to work with him and we constructed roads from Abuja to Port Harcourt, Benin to Onitsha and so on. We also touched education and health institutions.

Although President Muhammadu Buhari did not directly mention the name of the former President he was talking about, the Olusegun Obasanjo administration has been repeatedly accused of spending up to $16bn on power with little to show for it.

On the mismanagement of the economy by previous administrations, President Buhari noted that the perpetrators lacked imagination and plans for the development of the nation.

‘‘Sometimes, I wonder about those who can afford to send their children abroad for studies and yet continue to sabotage the economy, I wonder what kind of Nigeria they want their children to return to and work. There is a lot of lack of imagination.

‘‘If you are working for the country, then you shouldn’t be misappropriating and misapplying public funds the way people did,’’ he said.

The President noted that under his watch, the 2016 and 2017 budgets recorded the highest appropriation and releases in capital projects, with over N2.8 trillion disbursements in two years.

The President urged Nigerians to reject those bent on dividing the country along religious and ethnic lines, warning that “they do not mean well for the country.

‘‘I have said severally that we do not have any other country than Nigeria and we will remain here and salvage it together.

‘‘We have nothing to regret. Absolutely nothing. God has given Nigeria everything. We are rich in human and material resources. Let us keep on praying to God to put people of conscience in-charge at all levels.’’

The Citizen

Latest News

Jimoh Ibrahim Withdraws Suit Against APC, Aiyedatiwa, INEC

Published

on

Jimoh Ibrahim Withdraws Suit Against APC, Aiyedatiwa, INEC

 Sen. Jimoh Ibrahim has withdrawn the suit filed challenging the emergence of Gov. Lucky Aiyedatiwa as the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate for the Nov. 16 governorship election in Ondo state.

Co-defendants in the suit seeking nullification of the party’s governorship primary conducted in the state on April 20 are APC and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

It would be recalled that the senator had after the conduct of the party’s governorship primary held on April 20, alleged irregularities and no election in the 18 local government areas of the state.

At a news conference in Abuja on Tuesday, Ibrahim attributed the withdrawal of the suit to a series of interventions made by President Bola Tinubu on the phone and physical meeting held with him at the Villa.

He said the litigation was not about him but for the sole purpose of ensuring internal party democracy, which was lacking in the APC governorship primary election.

Ibrahim said: ” The suit is now withdrawn due to the intervention of President  Tinubu.

“The President called me, had a meeting with me, and assured me that he will, as the party leader,  improve on internal democracy within our party.

“And I will need to withdraw the case to enable him to chart a way forward.

“Earlier, the governor visited my Asokoro residence for several hours after an unsuccessful visit to my hotel room in Akure.

” I cannot disobey the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria because the issue I’m fighting for is not personal.

“It is simply to improve internal democracy to which the President has promised improvement. My respect for the President is absolute!.”

He thanked Tinubu for his words of wisdom and encouragement during their meeting and for emphasising his commitment to internal democracy again.

“The withdrawal of this legendary suit coincides with the first anniversary of the  President’s incredible performance in office, and this is my gift of the “cake” of the first anniversary,” Ibrahim said. 

Continue Reading

Politics

Edo Assembly Impeaches Deputy Governor, Shauibu

Published

on

Edo Assembly Impeaches Deputy Governor, Shauibu

The impeachment followed the adoption of the recommendation of a seven-man judicial panel led by retired Justice Stephen Omonua.

At plenary in Benin, the Majority leader of the house, Charity Aiguobarueghian said the report of the 7-man panel presented to the house found Shauibu culpable of disclosure of government secrets.

Aiguobarueghian further disclosed that though the panel was unable to establish the case of perjury against the deputy governor, it made two findings and one recommendation upon which the decision to impeach the deputy governor was anchored.

According to him, “the seven-man judicial panel of inquiry recommended that the deputy governor be impeached on the ground of disclosure of government secrets.’’

During voting on the motion, 18 out of 19 members present at plenary voted for the impeachment of the deputy governor while one abstained from the headcount and voting process.

The Clerk of the House, Yahaya Omogbai conducted a head count of the lawmakers who voted for and against the impeachment of Shaibu.

The clerk said with the figure, the house stated that it met 2/3 (16 members of the House was needed to carry out the impeachment).

The assembly thereafter upheld and approved the recommendation of the seven-man panel and thereafter impeached the deputy governor.

The speaker, Blessing Agbebaku directed the Clerk of the House, Yahaya Omogbai to forward copies of the impeachment to Gov. Godwin Obaseki for assent.

The Edo House of Assembly on Monday impeached the Deputy Governor, Mr Philip Shaibu.

The impeachment followed the adoption of the recommendation of a seven-man judicial panel led by retired Justice Stephen Omonua.

At plenary in Benin, the Majority leader of the house, Charity Aiguobarueghian said the report of the 7-man panel presented to the house found Shauibu culpable of disclosure of government secrets.

Aiguobarueghian further disclosed that though the panel was unable to establish the case of perjury against the deputy governor, it made two findings and one recommendation upon which the decision to impeach the deputy governor was anchored.

According to him, “the seven-man judicial panel of inquiry recommended that the deputy governor be impeached on ground of disclosure of government secrets.’’

During voting on the motion, 18 out of 19 members present at plenary voted for the impeachment of the deputy governor while one abstained from the headcount and voting process.

The Clerk of the House, Yahaya Omogbai conducted a head count of the lawmakers who voted for and against the impeachment of Shaibu.

The clerk said with the figure, the house stated that it met 2/3 (16 members of the House was needed to carry out the impeachment).

The assembly thereafter upheld and approved the recommendation of the seven-man panel and thereafter impeached the deputy governor.

The speaker, Blessing Agbebaku directed the Clerk of the House, Yahaya Omogbai to forward copies of the impeachment to Gov. Godwin Obaseki for assent.

Continue Reading

Politics

Court Remands Emefiele In EFCC Custody As Trial Begins April 11

Published

on

Emefiele: CBN disbursed N12.65bn as agriculture intervention since January; N1.09 trillion since 2015

An Ikeja Special Offences Court on Monday remanded the embattled former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Godwin Emefiele, for alleged abuse of office and fraud to the tune of $4.5 billion and N2.8 billion.
It was reported that Justice Rahman Oshodi remanded Emefiele in the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) custody while his co-defendant, Henry  Isioma-Omoile, was remanded in the Ikoyi custodial centre.
Oshodi remanded the defendants pending the determination of their bail applications on April 11.
The judge adjourned the case until April 11 for the determination of bail application and commencement of trial.
Earlier, EFCC arraigned Emefiele on a 23-count charge bordering on abuse of office, accepting gratifications, corrupt demand, receiving property fraudulently obtained and conferring corrupt advantage, while his co-defendant was arraigned on a three-count charge bordering on acceptance of gift by agents.
The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.
EFCC counsel, Mr Rotimi Oyedepo (SAN) had asked the court for a trial date following the defendants’ not guilty pleas.
Oyedepo also informed the court that the prosecution would be asking for a closed section for some of its witnesses who were willing to come to court to testify but scared for their lives.

Counsel to the two defendants, Mr Abdulakeem Labi-Lawal, had in their bail applications, urged the court to grant them bail on self-recognizance and liberal terms pending the determination of the case.
Labi-Lawal, in a 35-paragraph affidavit, said that the first defendant (Emefiele) complied with the bail application given to him by Justice Hamza Muazu in his ongoing fraud trial in Abuja.
He added that the charges against the first defendant were bailable.
“Though the first defendant was granted administrative bail by the prosecuting authority, he is seeking bail based on self-recognizance, and he is ready to attend trial.
“The court should also take into consideration the status of the first defendant as he was the former CBN governor of the country,” the counsel said.
The defence counsel further said that Emefiele religiously presented himself before Justice Hamza Muazu in Abuja to answer allegations before him.
According to the counsel, the first defendant was not at flight risk as he was the first person to arrive in court.
He also prayed the court to grant bail to  Emefiele on liberal terms
Labi-Lawal also moved a bail application for the second defendant and urged the court to grant him bail on liberal terms.
Prosecution counsel, Oyedepo, did not oppose the bail applications.
Oyedepo, however, urged the court to exercise its discretion judiciously in granting bail to the defendants.
In one of the charges, EFCC  alleged that Emefiele abused the authority of his office as CBN  governor by allocating foreign exchange in the aggregate sum of $2.2 billion without bids, the act which was prejudiced to the rights of Nigerians.
It also alleged that the ex-CBN governor corruptly accepted an aggregate sum of  $26.5 million from NIPCO Plc through Donatone Ltd.
The commission also accused Emefiele of receiving the sum of $400,000 from Source Computer Ltd. on account of the approval of a “contract” in favour of the said company by CBN.
The anti-graft also alleged that Emefiele used his position as the governor of CBN  to confer corrupt advance on his associate, Limelight Multidimensional Services Ltd. by approving payment of an aggregate sum of N900 million to the company.
Emefiele was also alleged to have used his position as the CBN governor to confer a corrupt advantage on Comec Support Services  Ltd. by approving the sum of N149 million to the company.
EFCC also alleged that the former CBN governor used his position to confer a corrupt advantage on  Andswin Resources and Solutions Ltd. by approving payment of the sum of N398 million to the company.
EFCC also accused Emefiele’s co-defendant (Isioma-Omoile) of giving the sum of $100,000 to the governor as a gift reward for allocation of foreign exchange.
According to the prosecution, the alleged offences violate Sections 8, 10, and 19 of the Corrupt Practices And Other Related Offences Act of 2000, Sections 65, 73, and 328 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State 2011.

Continue Reading

Advertisement

Editor’s Pick

Politics