Sunday, April 24, 2016

$40m fraud: family of Ex-President Jonathan’s cousin accuses EFCC of impunity

Henry Ojelu

Goodluck Jonathan, former president of Nigeria

Goodluck Jonathan, former president of Nigeria

The family of Rober Azibaola, cousin to former President Goodluck Jonathan has accused the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC of disobeying a Federal High Court order which granted him bail.

Azibaola who has been in the EFCC custody since March 23 is been investigated by the commission over his alleged involvement in the diversion of a N40billion oil pipeline security contract through One-Plus Holdings, a sister company of Kakatar Construction Limited.

Azibaola allegedly recieved the payment for the contract which was said to have been made by the detained former National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd).

Worried by his continued incarceration, Azibaola had approach a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja for the enforcement of his fundamental Human Right.

Ruling on the application, Justice Olasunbor held that Robert’s detention by the EFCC for over two weeks was unconstitutional.

Instead of obeying the court order, the EFCC last week Friday approached an Ikeja Magistrate with a holden charge to further remand him in their custody.

Addressing a press conference on Sunday in Lagos, Azibaola’s brother Dr. Faith Robert alleged that the EFCC has refused to obey the bail order granted to his brother by a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja.

” It is important to note that EFCC, an organisation created by an Act of Parliament has continued to treat the order of a Federal High Court with contempt. Some officials from the commission have even boasted that no court order can be binding on EFCC.

” It is instructive to note that even the remand order by a Magistrate court which EFCC relied on to detain my brother expired on April 19. After several surreptitious attempts to renew the order in several magistrate court failed in Abuja, they sneaked him to Lagos to obtain a fresh remand order from another magistrate court even when there is a subsisting order and production warrant from a court of superior jurisdiction,” he said.

Dr. Robert also alleged that officials of the commission has been putting pressure on Azibaola to implicate former President Goodluck Jonathan.

“Even though EFCC is yet to formally charge my brother to any court of law, 10 months after launching investigation into his companies, his interrogators have told him in clear terms to ‘say something to implicate’ his cousin, former President Goodluck or rot in EFCC custody.

“In EFCC custody, Azibaola, has been repeatedly bullied, harassed, threatened and psychologically traumatised to either implicate. Goodluck Jonathan or be ready to face Dasuki treatment. Some have even taunted him to get his fisherman cousin (Former President Jonathan) beg President Muhammadu Buhari to release my brother “if Jonathan indeed has my clout.”

“They claim that my brother holds enough evidence to lead to the arrest and prosecution of former President Jonathan before May 29, 2016 and must produce such by “all means”   

“It is unfortunate that in targeting former President Goodluck Jonathan my brother has become a pawn on the chessboard of the current government. More unfortunate is that EFCC, under Mr. Ibrahim Mangu, has constituted itself into the accuser, prosecutor and judge in this matter and has continued to undermine the Judiciary – all in the bid by the acting chairman to curry the favour of his masters and possibly be confirmed substantive chairman of the commission”.

Dr. Robert called on the EFCC to immediately charge his brother to court and allow him to enjoy the bail already granted to him

$40m fraud: family of Ex-President Jonathan’s cousin accuses EFCC of impunity
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