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Daily Archives: February 12, 2018

Patience Jonathan kicks as EFCC seeks forfeiture of another $8.4m, N7.3bn

Wife of former President Goodluck Jonathan, Dame Patience, on Monday asked the Federal High Court in Lagos to strike out an ex-parte application filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), seeking the temporary forfeiture of her $8,435,788.84 and N7.35 billion respectively.

She asked the court to grant an order striking out the motion filed on December 13 last year because it lacks jurisdiction to hear it.

Mrs. Jonathan said the motion was “a gross abuse of court process” because the issues were already pending before Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court in Abuja.

“The ex-parte originating summons filed by the EFCC amounts to forum shopping, thus an abuse of court process,” she said

Through her lawyers, Mr. Ifedayo Adedipe (SAN) and Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN), the former first lady said the same application had earlier been filed by the EFCC before Justice Mojisola Olatoregun of the court’s Lagos division, upon which it had obtained an ex-parte order.

She said the same application was before Justice Nyako “over same parties to be affected by this same application.”

She said EFCC allegedly failed to disclose the different suits and orders made prior to filing the application before Justice Olatoregun in Lagos.

“The respondent is making great mockery of the judicial system and in extension this honourable court,” Mrs. Jonathan said.

In a supporting affidavit, a lawyer in Ozekhome’s chambers, Chimaobi Onuigbo, said EFCC knowing that its application had been challenged in Abuja, filed the one in Lagos.

“The respondent upon knowing that their application had been challenged has come to this court to seek same relief over same accounts and parties that it has filed same application against in all the suits already mentioned,” he said.

The respondents in EFCC’s motion are – Mrs. Jonathan, Globus Integrated Services, Finchley Top Homes Limited, AM PM Global Network Limited, Pagmat Oil and Gas Nigeria Limited, Magel Resort Limited and Esther Oba.

Onuigbo said their accounts had been frozen for over one year although they had not been charged with any offence by the EFCC.

Suspected poacher eaten by lions

A suspected poacher was mauled to death and eaten by a pack of lions close to the Kruger National Park in South Africa, police said Monday, adding that little was left of the victim’s body.

The remains were found at the weekend in the bush at a private game park near Hoedspruit in the northern province of Limpopo, where animals have been poached in increasing numbers over recent years.

“It seems the victim was poaching in the game park when he was attacked and killed by lions. They ate his body, nearly all of it, and just left his head and some remains,” Limpopo police spokesman Moatshe Ngoepe told AFP.

A loaded hunting rifle was found near the body on Saturday morning. Police are trying to establish the victim’s identity.

Last year, several lions were found poisoned near a farm in the same province with their heads and paws sawn off.

Lion body parts are used in traditional medicine.

Poachers also often target rhinoceroses in South Africa’s game parks to feed a booming demand for rhino horn in China, Vietnam and other Asian countries, where it is believed to have medicinal qualities.

AFP

Sanusi asks Miyetti Allah to expose killer herdsmen

ThevEmir of Kano, Muhammd Sanusi II, has asked the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), to expose criminal herdsmen among them.

Speaking at a national executive council meeting of MACBAN at Minna, Niger state on Sunday, Sanusi said not all herdsman are criminals.

The emir said Nigerians should avoid “ethnic profiling” whenever a crime is committed.

“Nigerians should avoid ethnic profiling whenever a crime was committed, criminals have no tribal marks,” Sanusi said.

“MACBAN should liaise with the governors of Niger, Kogi, Nasarawa and Kano states who have indicated interest to allocate grazing reserves, with a view to developing them.”

On his part, Gidado Siddiki, zonal chairman of MACBAN, said the solution to the conflict between herders and famers is to engage all the stakeholders.

He commended the approaches of Willie Obiano and Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, governors of Anambra and Enugu states respectively, towards ending the farmers-herdsmen crisis.

“[The] conflict between herdsmen and farmers has a long history; the solution has been to engage all stakeholders to find an amicable solution to the conflict,” he said.

“We commend Obiano and Ugwuanyi who have been able to effectively stem the recurring clashes between farmers and herders at a time their other peers and the federal government are at a loss on how to handle the clashes.”

The meeting was also attended by Muhammadu Barkindo Musdafa, Lamido of Adamawa; Ango Abdullahi and Aliyu Tilde among others.

2019: Ex-CBN chief, Moghalu to run for president

A former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Dr Kingsley Moghalu, announced on Monday that he was consulting widely to run for the presidency in 2019.

Mr. Moghalu told political correspondents in Lagos that time had come for technocrats, intellectuals and experienced people to take power from Nigeria’s career politicians.

He said that he would not be deterred from joining the race, in spite of speculations that 2023 was the year slated for Igbos to have a shot at the presidency.

Mr. Moghalu argued that politics in Nigeria should be detribalised for Africa’s most populous nation to grow and take its rightful place in the comity of nations.

“It is the turn of any competent Nigerian to aspire for the post of presidency because career politicians have failed Nigeria.’’

He said that zoning, which had been used by the major political parties, might have been relevant in the past but that it was no longer necessary because competence should be placed above tribe in present day Nigeria.

“Zoning was an internal arrangement by political parties that was not constitutional. It should no longer matter where the president comes from.

“The future of Nigeria rests in technocratic interventions. We need thinking people that will take Nigeria from the politics of stomach infrastructure to politics of mental infrastructure.’’

The former CBN chief said that the first part to progress for Nigeria was for the people to begin to think differently and beyond tribe in choosing those who would lead them.

Speaking on a second term for President Muhammadu Buhari, Mr. Moghalu said that the president had constitutional rights to seek re-election.

“I don’t fathom how anyone can say the president should not run for a second term. It is his choice, the decision on who becomes Nigeria’s president in 2019 rests with Nigerians. ‘’

On the nation’s economy, the economist pointed out that “the economy was in a delicate situation before the present administration.

“The handling of the forex crisis though was misguided. The drop in oil prices actually affected the value of our currency but government should have simply allowed the naira to find its true value which would have reduced the inflation rate.’’

He said that Nigeria must look beyond continued dependence on oil and encourage independent institutions to flourish.

Mr. Moghalu, however, advised Nigerians to eschew docility and become more forceful in demanding accountability from their leaders at all levels of governance.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Mr. Moghalu, who served as CBN deputy governor from 2009 to 2014, is a political economist, lawyer and a former United Nations official.

He was also a professor of practice in international business and public policy at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University in Massachusetts, U.S.

Born on May 7, 1963, Mr. Moghalu is a graduate of the London School of Economics. He also read Political Science at the University of Nigeria Nsukka.

(NAN)

JAMB responds to ‘money-swallowing snake’ report

The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board, JAMB, has reacted to a bizarre report trending of a snake swallowing N36 million from the vault of one of its state branches.

The board said the case was that of pure criminality and fraud on the part of one of its staff.

Nigerians on social media have also been reacting to the disappearance of the cash in JAMB’s Makurdi office.

According to a report in Sun news online, a mystery snake was said to have sneaked into the accounts office of the Board in Makurdi and ‘stolen’ N36 million cash

Saturday Sun said a team of auditors was dispatched to different state offices of JAMB to take inventory of the sold and unsold scratch cards and recover whatever money that might have either been generated or mismanaged during the period of the sale.

JAMB candidates usually purchase scratch cards to gain access to the Board’s website for either registration or for checking their admission status. But new reforms introduced by JAMB registrar, Ishaq Oloyede, who assumed office in 2016, ended the use of scratch cards, replacing it with more efficient and effective platforms.

“A sales clerk, Philomina Chieshe, told JAMB registrar and his team that she could not account for N36 million she made in previous years before the abolition of scratch cards. In the course of interrogation, Philomena denied the allegations that she stole the money but confessed that her housemaid connived with another JAMB staff, Joan Asen, to “spiritually” (through a snake) steal the money from the vault in the account office”, the report said.

The spokesperson of the board, Fabian Benjamin, said there was indeed a case of fraud and criminality in the Benue State office.

According to him, the registrar demanded the sale of scratch cards should be stopped in order to curb corruption.

London City Airport closed after WWII bomb is found

London City Airport was closed on Monday as military experts worked to remove a World War II bomb found in the neighbouring dock.

The unexploded ordnance was discovered in King George V Dock, during planned works near the runway of London’s most central airport.

The bomb was discovered at around 5:00am (0500 GMT) on Sunday and a 214-metre exclusion zone was imposed “to ensure that the ordnance can be safely dealt with whilst limiting any risk to the public,” police said.

Homes within the exclusion zone were evacuated overnight and the local authority was providing residents with temporary accommodation and support.

Police remained at the scene on Monday.

“The operation to remove the ordnance is ongoing in partnership with our colleagues in the Royal Navy,” London’s Metropolitan Police said in a statement.

City Airport operates short-haul flights and is located in east London, close to the Canary Wharf business district.

It is the capital’s fifth-biggest airport.

“The airport remains closed this morning,” said its chief executive Robert Sinclair.

“All flights in and out of London City on Monday are cancelled.

“I urge any passengers due to fly today not to come to the airport and to contact their airline for further information.”

London was heavily bombed during the “Blitz”, the Nazi German air attacks of September 1940 to May 1941.

London City Airport opened in 1987 in the disused docklands. It handled 4.5 million passengers in 2017 and is mainly used by business travellers.

AFP

OBITUARY: Shagaya, the ECOMOG commander who facilitated peace abroad but witnessed crisis at home

When the history of peacekeeping mission in Africa would be told, a special place will, no doubt, be reserved for John Nazip Shagaya who was an ex-commander of the Economic Community of West African States Monitoring Group (ECOMOG) at a point in time. ECOMOG was a West African multilateral armed force established by ECOWAS. It was a formal arrangement for separate armies to work together and restore peace in troubled countries.

In an interview in 2012, Shagaya who ended his earthly journey in a road crash on Sunday, said: “It’s a shame that I ensured peace in Liberia, Angola, Sierra Leone, yet no peace in my home state.” He hailed from Plateau state, which has experienced different forms of violence and of late, the clashes between farmers and herdsmen.

Earlier this month, the deceased shared an outstanding encounter with Daily Trust. Although that incident happened in 1964, the memory was with him, probably till he took his last breath. He had been posted to a cemetery where about 40 bodies had been buried. His assignment was to head the troops who were to watch over the dead. Ironically, troops are currently guarding his own body at the Air Force Military Hospital in Jos, Plateau capital. Life!

Scene of the place where Shagaya died

Hear what he said of that 1964 mission: “I was assigned to guard a cemetery and that particular cemetery, somewhere in Wukari, Taraba state was where it was suspected that some 40 human beings were buried and the period of responsibility was dependent on how soon the forensic police officers would come from Lagos and someone from Scotland Yard in England. That assignment made me the subunit commander of the troops that guarded and protected that graves until bodies were exhumed, counted, numbers were known and some form of DNA was taken before they were reburied. That was in 1964. In the night we were intimidated by all sorts of things, spiritual things but then, we remained unshaken because we had a duty.”

WORRIED ABOUT CLASHES BETWEEN FARMERS AND HERDSMEN

The one-time senator who represented Plateau south was disturbed about the clashes between farmers and herdsmen.

In January, he led a delegation of the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) to Benue state, where over 73 persons had been killed. During the visit, he urged Samuel Ortom, governor of Benue to continue with his “constructive engagement” with the federal government, his colleagues and security agencies to find a lasting solution to the challenge.

Shagaya advocated for a “constructive” approach to the clashes between the herdsman and farmers.

Babangida in his military days

He said there was a need to understand the dynamics of the clashes before “we start condemning ourselves.”

“Nigerians have to start seeing certain national problems as a problem of the country and not a problem of one religion or a problem of Buhari because he is a Fulani man and a Fulani man entered a farm,” he said in an interview.

“We have to outgrow that, after all, down in the south-east, south-south where kidnapping became an industry, it wasn’t done along religious line and yet there are governors there who come from some of these communities.”

DEATH OF WIFE

In March 2017, Pauline Shagaya, the ex-senator’s wife, died in an Abuja hospital after a brief illness. She was 70. Recently, President Muhammadu Buhari appointed Shagaya as the chairman of the National Institute for Policy and Strategy Studies (NIPSS), Jos.

MILITARY CAREER

Shagaya graduated from the Nigerian Military School Zaria in 1964. Upon graduation, he was posted to the Nigerian Army Corps and later to the 3 Marine Commando where he was commissioned as second lieutenant. After the civil war, he held appointments such as director of cadets, Nigerian Defence Academy, director of the Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Jaji, brigade commander, 9 Mechanised Infantry Brigade, Military Secretary, Army Headquarters, and general officer commanding, 1st Mechanised Infantry Division.

He retired from the army as a brigadier general after he was demoted from rank of major general in 1993 by Sani Abacha, late dictator. Abacha reportedly did not trust those loyal to Ibrahim Babangida, ex-head of state, also known as “IBB boys”. This was to be the reason he demoted Shagaya. Under the military government of Babangida, Shagaya was minister of internal affairs.

1985 COUP ‘PARTICIPANT’

Abacha: He demoted Shagaya

On August 27, 2003, Babangida said Shagaya was “a participant in the exercise that brought our regime to power”.

The occasion was the presentation of book entitled ‘Governance in Nigeria: The IBB Era; an Insider View’ by Shagaya. That day commemorated 18th anniversary of the coup that brought IBB to power after overthrowing Muhammadu Buhari in 1985.

“At 6am on Tuesday August 27, 1985 After having a champagne breakfast to toast their success, the plotters’ inner caucus held a meeting at Bonny Camp to flesh out details of the new leadership,” Chris Alli, a retired major general, said in an account.

“The meeting was attended by the following officers who arrived dressed in combat fatigues: Babangida, Maj-Gen Sani Abacha, Brigadier Joshua Dogonyaro, Brigadier Aliyu Mohammed (head of military intelligence), Navy Commander Murtala Nyako, Lt-Col Ahmed Abdullahi, Lt-Col Tanko Ayuba (commanding officer – Nigerian army signal corps), Lt-Col John Shagaya (commanding officer – 9th mechanised brigade, Ikeja), Lt-Col Anthony Ukpo, Major Abubakar Umar.”

‘IBB EXAMPLE NOT GOOD BUT…’

The retired brigadier general had a vision of seeing the country being developed by the hands of Nigerians.

He lamented that Nigerians who have acquired experience abroad are not brought back to the country to contribute their own quota in the country’s development.

“Many Nigerians will lament that with the wealth of experience of many Nigerians outside this country who are professionals that will be found in countries like the US and UK, no one thinks of bringing them back to the country, to use their experience for the growth of the economy. Yet we have very powerful manpower that shakes the world, so it is sad. We are talking about the need to recognize that there is value on the need to recognise and bring in people with experience to serve this country,” Shagaya said in an interview.

“I will borrow from the example of Gen Ibrahim Babangida. Even though it is not the best example since it was the military era, but you will find from the quality of Nigerians he brought from outside the country to serve in the nation made the administration what it was and so far it remains in history that it is the one that brought lots of innovations in terms of governance and that can be found in my book, ‘Governance in Nigeria, the IBB era’. Why do I say so?

“That administration recognized that people like Dr. Olukoye Ransome-Kuti who was then working for the World Health Organization and he decided to reform the health sector.”

POLITICAL CAREER

Shagaya was elected as senator representing Plateau south in April 2007. He was elected on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). The election was nullified until the court of appeal upheld him as the winner in December 2008. The ex-senator was a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC) until his death.

Born to Sikji Miri Wazhi and Maryamu Zwancit, he is survived by eight children and 13 grandchildren.

The Cable

Service chiefs keep mum after 2-hour meeting with Buha

President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday met with security chiefs at the presidential villa in Abuja.

At the end of the meeting which lasted three hours, no official was willing to take questions from state house correspondents.

The heads of Nigeria Immigration Service, Nigeria Customs Service, Nigeria Fire Service, Federal Road Safety Corps, Nigeria Prisons Service, and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, attended the meeting.

When approached, Babagana Monguno, national security adviser, declined to speak with reporters on the outcome of the meeting.

FG arraigns Dino Melaye March 1 for giving false information to police

The Federal Government will on March 1 arraign the Kogi West Senator Dino Melaye before the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory in Abuja on two counts of giving false information about an assassination attempt on his life to the police in April 2017.

Melaye was accused of falsely incriminating the Chief of Staff to Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State, Mr. Edward Onoja David, in the said assassination attempt.

The office of the Attorney General of the Federation filed the charges, marked CR/106/18 on January 31, 2018.

It was learnt that the case had been assigned to Justice Olasumbo Goodluck who sits in the Maitama Division of the FCT High Court.

But our correspondent learnt that attempts to serve Melaye with the charges at the National Assembly in Abuja failed last week.

“He will be served before the date of arraignment and if serving him personally continues to prove difficult, there are other options provided by the law,” a source in the Federal Ministry of Justice said.

In the first count, the senator was accused of deliberately giving false information to the police to frame Governor Bello’s Chief of Staff  as the mastermind of the assassination attempt on him at his hometown in Ayetoro-Gbede in Kogi State in April last year.

According to the charges signed by Mr. Magaji Labaran, the police discovered the alleged falsehood in Melaye’s claim while investigating the senator’s assassination claim.

In the second count, Melaye was accused of making false statement of facts in a phone conversation with Mr. Mohammed Abubakar, a son of the late former governor of Kogi State, Abubakar Audu, with the intention of harming the reputation of David.

Melaye was said to have told Abubakar, a son of a former governor of Kogi State in a telephone conversation how he framed Edward Onoja David in the assassination attempt.

Two-year-old rape victim draws object believed to be alleged abuser’s male organ

The trial of a 47-year-old man accused of raping a two-year-old pupil of Chrisland School continued on Monday with the prosecution playing a video in court showing the victim attempting to explain the incident.

Adegboyega Adenekan, a supervisor at Chrisland School, was arraigned on January 29 before Sybil Nwaka of the Ikeja Division of the Lagos State High Court. He pleaded not guilty to a charge of defilement of a child.

The defendant is also accused of raping another 11 month old child.

Testifying before the judge on Monday, Olive Ogedengbe, who works with the Office of the Public Defender, said she was alarmed at the ability of the two-year-old to draw an object resembling a male reproductive organ when asked if she recalled what her alleged abuser used on her.

Ms. Ogedengbe said she promptly began to record that part of her session with the child to ensure that her testimony is consistent.

When the video was played in court, the child was seen making different sexual gesticulations in a bid to describe the alleged incident with Mr. Adenekan.

The matter was then stood down for a brief court recess.

Details later