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Raid on Justice Odili’s Home Despicable, Shameful – Supreme Court

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The Supreme Court of Nigeria on Tuesday faulted the last week’s invasion of the residence of Justice Mary Odili by security operatives, describing it as impunity taken too far.

The apex court warned that judiciary should not be misconstrued by any individual or institution of government as the weeping child among the three arms of government.

The Supreme Court, in a statement by its Director of Press and Information, Dr. Festus Akande, described the attack as an uncivilised and shameful show of primitive force on an innocent judicial officer.

The statement reads in part, “We are alarmed with the news of the unwarranted and despicable raid on the official residence of one of our senior justices in the Supreme Court, Justice Mary Odili, on Friday, October 29 2021 in a gestapo manner

“The attack unfortunately depicted a gory picture of war by some armed persons suspected to be security operatives representing different agencies of government who seemed to have come to kill and maim their target under the guise of undertaking a search whose warrant was questionable and baseless.

“We are deeply saddened and taken aback by this uncivilised and shameful show of primitive force on an innocent judicial officer that has so far spent several years of her productive life serving the country she calls her own.

“This incident brought back, rather painfully, the ugly memory of the October 2016 midnight invasion of the homes of our respected justices with no satisfactory explanations as to the true motive behind such brazen assault on our collective sensibility.

“We wish to make it abundantly clear that the Nigerian judiciary is the third arm of the government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and should be respected and treated as such.

“We have had a full dosage of this fusillade of unwarranted and unprovoked attacks on our judicial officers and even facilities across the country and we say it loudly now that enough is enough.”

The apex court said it has commenced a full-scale independent investigation to unravel those behind the invasion as well as the real motives behind it.

“The Nigerian judiciary cannot only bark, but can also bite. We can no longer be treated with disdain and levity. The rule of law and constitutionality must govern our conduct so that we can tag along with the comity of nations and be taken seriously too,” it added.

The Body of Senior Advocates of Nigeria also on Tuesday confronted the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, over the invasion.

Leader of the senior lawyers, Chief Solomon Awomolo (SAN), said they were concerned about the incident, insisting that government must unearth those behind the invasion.

He said, “We have come to see the AGF concerning the unfortunate and ugly invasion of the resident of Justice Mary Odili of the Supreme Court last Friday by yet to be identified security operatives.

“When judges’ lives, careers, security and safety, when their independence is threatened, then democracy is also threatened.

“The AGF has said he did not have knowledge of the incident and he had written a letter of complaint to the Inspector General of Police for a thorough investigation as demonstration of his sincerity.

“He said he is open to be investigated if there is any information that connects him to the incident.

“We are going to meet with the Chief Justice of Nigeria and let him know that the Body of SANs is very concerned about the lives, security and safety of our judicial officers anywhere and everywhere.

“This incident appears to be in isolation but we cannot let it be swept under the carpet.

“The incident must be investigated and investigated thoroughly.”

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UN Deputy Sec Gen Condemns Gruesome Killing of Deborah, Demands Justice

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Amina Muhammed, the United Nations Deputy Secretary-General, has called for justice following the killing of Deborah Yakubu in Sokoto over blasphemy.

Muhammed spoke out via her official Twitter page on Tuesday, stating that religions should not be “misinterpreted to preach violence”.

“Justice must be done for the senseless, brutal killing of the young Deborah Yakubu in Nigeria. Religions should not be misinterpreted to preach violence when they promote peace.

“My prayers are with the family and for the repose of her soul,” she tweeted.

Yakubu, a second-year student of the Sheu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto, was lynched on the school premises on Thursday after classmates accused her of blasphemy.

On Monday, the Sokoto Police Command arraigned two suspects, Bilyaminu Aliyu and Aminu Hukunci, before a Chief Magistrate’s Court in the state, for their alleged participation in the crime.

The suspects pleaded not guilty to the charges while the defence counsel, Prof. Mansur Ibrahim, applied for their bail on liberal terms, citing constitutional provisions and sections of the Administration of Criminal Justice Law.

The trial judge reserved the ruling on the bail application and ordered the accused to be remanded at a correctional centre.

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AfDB’s Adesina Not Contesting for Presidency – Report

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The President of the African Development Bank, Akinwunmi Adesina, will not be contesting the Presidency of Nigeria.

A support group had purchased and submitted the N100m Presidential form of the All Progressives Congress for the top banker last week.

Some had also reported that Adesina visited Mamman Daura, the influential nephew of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) last week to seek his support.

But The PUNCH confirmed that Adesina will not be taking part in the Presidential screening of the APC slated for May 23.

Adesina’s office is expected to issue a statement in a few hours distancing himself from Nigeria’s partisan politics.

The AfDB regulations bar its President from partisan politics.

Specifically, Paragraph 2 of Article 38 of the agreement establishing AfDB, titled ‘Prohibition of Political Activity; the International Character of the Bank’, states that “The Bank, its President, Vice Presidents, officers and staff shall not interfere in the political affairs of any member (country); nor shall they be influenced in their decisions by the political character of the member (country) concerned.”

Paragraph 3 of the article states that “The President, Vice Presidents, officers and staff of the Bank, in discharge of their offices, owe their duty entirely to the Bank and to no other authority.”

Similarly, the AfDB code of conduct bars its executive from partisan politics. Section 10 of the Code reads: “Although Executive Directors are elected representatives of governments from their constituencies, they shall during their tenure of office as executive directors refrain from participating in active politics in their home countries or elsewhere.”

Should Adesina seek to run for the office of President of Nigeria, he would need to resign his current position permanently, a risk it was learnt the top banker was not willing to take.

There are at least 25 other aspirants running for President on the platform of the APC.

Some of them include APC stalwart, Bola Tinubu; Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo; former Transport Minister, Rotimi Amaechi; Senate President Ahmad Lawan; oil mogul, Tein Jack-Rich; Senator Ajayi Boroffice; Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State; Governor Badaru Abubakar of Jigawa State and many others.

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N80bn Fraud: EFCC Arrests Accountant-General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris

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Nigeria’s Accountant-General, Ahmed Idris, has been arrested over alleged money laundering and diversion of public funds, according to a report by PREMIUM TIMES.

According to the report, Idris was intercepted in Kano by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Monday evening and flown to Abuja, the nation’s capital, for interrogation.

Sources said the EFCC has for sometime now been investigating a case of diversion of at least N80 billion in public funds which was allegedly laundered through some bogus contracts.

The companies used in laundering the funds have allegedly been linked to family members and associates of the accountant-general, investigators said.

The sources further said that after progress was made in the investigation, Idris was summoned repeatedly for interrogation but he failed to honour the invitations.

“We kept inviting him but he kept dodging us,” one of our sources said. “We were left with no choice than to keep him under watch and arrest him.”

However, a top EFCC confirmed the development but asked not to be named because he had no permission to discuss the matter with the media.

President Muhammed Buhari appointed Mr Idris accountant-general on June 25, 2015.

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