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Buhari govt ‘witch-hunting’ PDP members, anti-corruption fight a ‘sham’ – HURIWA

The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, has accused the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government of “witch-hunting” members of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.

HURIWA made the claim while condemning what it called the “continuous manifestation of deep rooted double standards in the anti-graft crusade of the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.”

This was as HURIWA canvassed for an all-inclusive fight against the scourge of corruption.

The body lamented that the leadership of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) headed by acting Chairman Ibrahim Magu has “unabashedly demonstrated his affiliation to the ruling All Progressives Congress”.

In a statement by its National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, HURIWA claimed that the “EFCC only targets political opponents of the President.”

Citing the instance of the failure of president Buhari to adopt constitutionally guaranteed yardstick in prosecuting all indicted top security officials in the alleged arms procurement scandal, the Rights group stated that the refusal to try the duo of internal Affairs Minister Lieutenant General Abdulrahman Danbazau and the National Security Adviser Major General Babagana Monguno has shown that the entire claims of the current government to be committed to the anti-graft war remains substantially “a sham and a politically motivated witch-hunt directed at the main opposition party of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).”

HURIWA accused the governmemt of facilitating the escape to foreign jurisdiction of the erstwhile Director General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) and his wife just few days before the EFCC belatedly filed a suit at the Federal High Court in Lagos over the discovery of over $45million USD cash in an Ikoyi flat in Lagos state.

The rights group wondered why President Buhari is picking and choosing who to drag before the competent court of law for prosecution over the alleged $2 Billion USD arms procurement scam even as the group condemns the prolonged detention of erstwhile National Security Adviser Colonel Sambo Dasuki over the same allegations for which the duo of Monguno and Danbazau were allegedly indicted.

HURIWA also charged President Muhammadu Buhari to “free with immediate effect all political prisoners including Deji Adeyanju; Sambo Dasuki and Sheikh Ibraheem ElZaczacky and his wife.”

The statement reads: “The basic tenet of justice is that he who goes to equity must go with clean hands. We are shocked beyond belief that a government that makes heavy weather of a so-called fight against corruption has clearly extended illegal immunity to friends of the government who are involved in corruption but has gone after political opponents. Again, there are allegations of corruption by relatives of the President including members of the unelected cabal in the Presidential villa Abuja who have become super billionaires since the current President came on board nearly four years now but all these well grounded allegations made by Buba Galadims a former acolyte of Buhari and Jinaidu Mohammed a former house of representatives member from Kano state have been swept under the filthy carpets of impunity by the current administration.

“It is only in a banana republic that for over two years after they were recommended for probe, the Federal Government has yet to investigate and charge the National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Monguno; and the Minister of Interior, Lt. Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau (retd.) even as the two ex-generals were recommended for probe by the Committee on Audit of Defence Equipment Procurement in the Nigerian Armed Forces from 2007 to 2015.”

HURIWA recalled that Moguno was recommended for probe over the procurement of weapons during his time as the Chief of Defence Intelligence Agency from July 2009 to September 2011 while Dambazau was recommended for investigation following alleged suspicious contracts awarded when he was Chief of Army Staff from 2008 to 2010.

“The fourth interim report of the committee which was signed by the President of the committee, Air vice Marshal John Ode (rtd.), recommended the investigation of 25 former officials of the Ministry of Defence, 16 retired generals and 44 companies.

HURIWA quoted the report as saying: “The sum of $5, 152, 792.44 equivalent to N772, 918, 866.60 at N150 per dollar was also transferred to unknown offshore accounts for unspecified purposes.

“The account was closed on December 1, 2011 with a closing balance of $0.0. Lt.Gen AB Dambazau (rtd.) and Maj. Gen Charles Airhiavbere should be further investigated for the operation of the account.”

Some others named in the report include a former Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Dele Ezeoba (rtd.), and a former Chief of Army Staff, Lt.Gen Onyeabor Ihejirika (rtd.).

HURIWA recalled succinctly that “While Ezeoba has been taken to court by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and made to return N1.8bn, Ihejrikia’s properties worth billions of naira have been seized by the government. A former Accountant-General of the Federation, Jonah Otunla, who was also named in the report, has been arraigned by the EFCC for alleged diversion of N2bn.However, both Dambazau and Monguno, who are appointees of President Buhari have neither been charged nor listed as looters by the Federal Government.”

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Court refuses Senator Nwaoboshi’s request to stop INEC from issuing Ned Nwoko Certificate of Return

A Federal High Court, sitting in Abuja has refused to hear the application brought by Senator Peter Nwaoboshi, for an order restraining the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from issuing Certificate of Return to Prince Ned Nwoko in respect of Delta North senatorial district.

Justice Ahmed Mohammed in a short ruling yesterday refused to hear Nwaoboshi’s motion on the grounds that the court lacked the jurisdiction to do so.

According to him, the Court of Appeal had already taken seize of the matter.

Recall that Justice Mohammed had on April 3, 2019 sacked Nwaoboshi as Senator-elect representing Delta North senatorial district.

In sacking the senator, the court had held that Nwaoboshi was not the winner of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) primary held on October 2, 2018, conducted to nominate its senatorial candidate for Delta North district in the 2019 general election.

Consequently, Justice Mohammed ordered INEC to withdraw the Certificate of Return issued Nwaoboshi as winner of the Delta North senatorial district election held on February 23 and issue Nwoko with a new certificate of return.

The court in addition, ordered INEC to immediately publish the name of Nwoko as the rightful candidate of the PDP, having established the fact before the court that Nwoko scored a majority of the lawful votes in the primary.

He also ordered Senator Nwaoboshi to stop parading himself as the candidate of the PDP for the Delta North senatorial district.

Not satisfied with the decision of Justice Mohammed, the senator approached the Court of Appeal in Abuja to upturn the judgement.

Nwaoboshi, also in an application urged Justice Mohammed to stay the execution of its earlier order sacking him as senator-elect representing Delta North senatorial district.

However, Justice Mohammed in a short ruling held that since defendants in the suit had appealed his judgement in the substantive suit, he would be transferring the motion together with the entire case file to the appellate court.

“This court has no further jurisdiction on the matter. In view of this, the first defendant’s (Nwaoboshi) motion filed before this court for stay of execution is hereby transmitted to the Court of Appeal,” Justice Mohammed said.

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Provide evidence that you defeated me in presidential election – Buhari challenges Atiku

The presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, and winner of the February 2019 election, Muhammadu Buhari, has faulted claim by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar that they won the election.

President Buhari told the Presidential Election Tribunal that, by the result announced by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, he (Buhari) and his party, were victorious in the last election.

The APC candidate also told the Tribunal that the claim by Atiku and the PDP that the tradermoni policy of the government was a vote-buying measure was not true.

According to Buhari, the policy formed one of the many social intervention policies his government had put in place, directed at alleviating the suffering of the masses.

Buhari asked the Tribunal to ignore the claim by the petitioners that they won by results they obtained from a purported INEC server because it lacked legal basis.

Buhari further challenged Atiku and PDP to show evidence that their votes were depleted and manipulated.

This was contained in a preliminary objection filed by his group of lawyers in response to Atiku’s petition.

President Buhari also faulted the petitioners’ allegations of vote manipulation made against some security personnel, some named private individuals and organisations, without making them parties to the petition.

Buhari asked the Tribunal to throw aside Atiku, PDP’s petition on the grounds that the reliefs sought by the petitioners were frivolous.

He added that “The entire reliefs are not justifiable, as the petitioners, who claim to have scored majority of lawful votes insubstantial number of states, are also questioning their own return in those states.

“The petitioners cannot act as petitioners and respondents in the same petition.

“The alternative relief sought is self-defeating, apart from being frivolous.

“The election to the office of President on 23rd F February, 2019, was conducted in substantial compliance with the provision of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended),” he said.

Buhari, challenged the petitioners to produce “specifics of website: www.factsdontlien .com, including its domain owner, proprietor, lessee, lessor; etc., pleaded in paragraph 29 of the petition.

“Details of the electronic data on the servers of the 1st respondent (INEC), including the time, the details were downloaded, the person who downloaded them and the means of downloading (paragraph 29 of the petition).

“The documents from the 1st respondent, publishing the registered voters in Nigeria, as 84, 004, 084 and the number of PVCs collected as 72,775,502 (paragraph 30 of the petition).

“Details and documents, showing a breakdown of the electronically collated votes of 664, 659, allegedly cast for the petitioners in Abia State (paragraph 34 of the petition).

“Documents showing the published registered voters in Bauchi State, as pleaded in paragraph 41 of the petition.

“Details of the electronically collated 332,618 votes in Bayelsa State (paragraph 42).

“Documents showing how petitioners’ votes were depleted by 173,153, in Benue State (paragraph 44).

“Details of how petitioners’ votes were depleted by 210,109 in Bomo State (paragraph 46 of the petition).”

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EPL: Mohamed Salah in shock Liverpool exit after heated discussion with Klopp

Liverpool star man, Mohamed Salah has made a shock request to leave the club, according to AS.
The Egyptian has reportedly told Liverpool he wants to leave after heated discussion with manager, Jurgen Klopp.
Salah has become a hero at the club since joining them nearly two years ago.

However, Spanish outlet AS, reports that the player is now determined to force his way out of the club this summer.

According to the report, Salah has asked the club to sanction his sale at the end of the season.

The paper said this decision comes as a result of a series of heated discussions with Klopp.

The Egyptian is even willing to hand in a transfer request to force through a move.

Salah penned a new bumper five-year contract with the Reds last summer on the back of a record-breaking season at the club.

Salah scored last night as Liverpool defeated Porto 4-1 and book their place in a successive Champions League semi-final.

Liverpool will be hoping on the player as they face Lionel Messi and his Barcelona side in the semi-finals of the competition later this month.

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