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CJN: Court stops Buhari govt from freezing Onnoghen’s bank accounts

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A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has stopped the federal government from freezing the accounts of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen.

The presiding judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu, ruled that the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) cannot freeze bank accounts of Justice Onnoghen without first obtaining a court order authorising the freezing.

The judge gave the order while ruling on an ex parte application filed by the Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEAP) against the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the AGF and the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU).

A copy of the order, which was made available to journalists in Abuja yesterday, read in part: “That the AGF shall first obtain an order of court (ex parte) before freezing the accounts of Justice Onnoghen Nkanu Walter Samuel (in respect of Exhibit B) in compliance with the law if, it was not obtained.

“That where it is shown that the order of court was obtained before the freezing of the accounts contained in Exhibit B, the freezing order shall remain valid.

“That order to be served on the respondents pending the hearing of the motion on notice.

“That the matter is adjourned to 13th day of February 2019 for report/motion on notice.”

Recall that last month, the federal government, through the AGF and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami (SAN), gave a directive to NFIU to freeze five bank accounts of Onnoghen, pending the final determination of the case against him at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT).

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Arewa

Buhari issues fresh order to military over banditry

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President Muhammadu Buhari Saturday in Katsina, Katsina State, charged the military to be more spontaneous in restoring peace to the country, particularly states troubled by bandits, ordering them “not to spare bandits’’ that have been killing, maiming and extorting innocent citizens.

Addressing 15 officers and 160 soldiers of the 17th Army Brigade and Nigerian Air Force 213 Operational Base in Katsina, under the “Operation Hadarin Daji’’, at the Umaru Musa Yar’Adua Airport, President Buhari, said:

“This group was formed by the military to secure the geo-political zone from the activities of bandits. Fundamentally, it is your responsibility to secure the country.

“As the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, I believe you are capable of doing it. I don’t think you should spare any bandit. Identify and eliminate them. Pursue them anywhere you can find them and eliminate them,’’ he said.

“Nigeria deserves peace. The rainy season is good and we are already achieving food security, but we need peace. The money saved from food importation will be used to purchase arms for operations,’’ he said.

The President, flanked by Governor Aminu Bello Masari, assured the troops that the Federal Government will provide all the necessary support for restoration of peace in the country.

“We will give you all the right equipment so that you can deal with them with despatch. I appreciate all your efforts but you can do more. I don’t want any bandit spared,’’ he added.

President Buhari said the government and all officials were being sustained in office by the ordinary people, and they owe the people a duty to protect their lives and property.

“Please give my regards to your families. The earlier you finish with the bandits, the earlier you will return and stay with your families,’’ he said.

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Arewa

President Buhari greets IBB at 78

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President Muhammadu Buhari has fecilitated with former president, General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida on his 78th birthday.

In a message to the former Head of State, President Buhari said:

“On behalf of the Federal Executive Council, my family and all Nigerians, please accept my warm felicitations on your 78th birthday.

“On this special day of your life, the reminiscences of your courage and invaluable service to the army in protecting the sovereignty of the country come to the fore. Thank you for the role of statesman you are playing in the affairs the nation.

“As you age gracefully, the country will continue to look up to you for guidance and wisdom. May Allah continue to increase your health and grant you the strength to give your best to your family and the nation.”

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Atiku Obasanjo

Atiku vs Buhari: UK police, DSS petitioned over Cambridge certificate

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The Department of State Services (DSS) and the London Metropolitan Police Service have received petitions to investigate the documents President Muhammadu Buhari at the presidential election tribunal.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate in the February 23, presidential election, Atiku Abubakar and his party had questioned the certificate.

Abba Kyari, Buhari’s chief of staff, had told the election tribunal that he obtained the president’s “assessment” documents from Cambridge University.

The separate petitions both dated August 14, 2019, and which were forwarded by a legal practitioner, Kalu Agu.

The lawyer questioned the authenticity of the “certifying statement” said to have been obtained from the Cambridge Assessment International Education.

He asked the UK police and the DSS to probe the following: “Where did Mr. Abba Kyari get the certificate which he enclosed alongside his application form for the issuance of the said certifying statement which he claimed he procured from Cambridge Assessment International Education.

“Whether Mr Abba Kyari as an individual can apply for the said certifying statement not being an academic institution or an employer of the candidate.

“Whether the said certifying statement can be delivered to Mr Abba Kyari by hand as he claimed he signed and personally collected same by hand in the UK.

“Evidence of the said application and of the candidate’s authorisation to the Cambridge Assessment International Education for the release of the said certifying statement to Mr Abba Kyari.”

He added that “in the circumstance that the certifying statement is found to be forged, it will be of great service to both Nigeria and the United Kingdom that Mr. Abba Kyari is arrested and arraigned in a court of competent jurisdiction for forgery.”

Atiku and PDP had in a 43-page final address filed by their lead counsel, Dr Levy Uzoukwu SAN, Atiku and PDP claimed to have established the fact that Buhari does not possess the requisite academic qualification for the position of President of Nigeria.

In Final address filed on August 14, the petitioners said even Buhari’s own witnesses under cross examination admitted to the fact that Buhari does not possess a school certificate, being the basic requirements for contesting for the office of the president.

“We therefore submit that all the purported evidence led by the 2nd respondent (Buhari) to prove that he attended a secondary school or a primary school or that he attended some courses, is irrelevant because he did not rely on any of those purported qualifications in exhibit P1, he relied on primary school certificate, WASC and Officer Cadet.

“Equally futile is his attempt to prove that he can speak and write in the English language. That is all irrelevant to his inability to produce his primary school certificate, secondary school certificate or WASC and his Officer Cadet qualification, whatever that means. Officer Cadet is not a qualification or certificate under the Constitution and Electoral Act; nor is it known to any law.

On the purported Cambridge University certificate tendered by Buhari before the tribunal, the petitioners asked why, “it was easier for Buhari to go all the way to Cambridge in the United Kingdom to obtain a bogus documents that his own witnesses said was not a certificate, instead of just driving down the street in Abuja to the Army Headquarters or placing a phone call to the Secretary of the Military Board in Abuja to hurry over with his certificate or certificates.”

Still on the Cambridge University documents, the petitioners submitted that, “A comparison of the purported Cambridge Assessment International Education Certifying Statement of the purported West African Examination Council (WAEC) certificate and a certified true copy of the purported confidential result sheet of the University of Cambridge West African School Certificate of 1961 for the Provincial Secondary School, Katsina reveals many discrepancies in the suppose result.

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