Boko Haram: Kabiru Sokoto Accuses Federal Agents Of Frustrating Appeal

Kabiru SokotoA convicted member of the Boko Haram sect, Kabiru Umar (also known as Kabiru Sokoto) has accused agents of the federal government of frustrating his efforts to appeal his conviction and sentence.

Mr Kabiru Sokoto was sentenced on December 20, 2013 to life imprisonment by Justice Adeniyi Ademola of the Federal High Court, Abuja in connection with the 2011 Christmas Day bomb blast that killed about 44 persons and wounded 75 others at St. Theresa’s Catholic Church in Madalla, Niger State.

In his judgment, Justice Ademola held that he was satisfied that the federal government successfully established the culpability of the convict beyond every reasonable doubt, noting that Umar had in two earlier separate confessional statements, admitted that he had prior knowledge of the attack.

The judge noted that Kabiru Sokoto never showed any remorse for his actions throughout the trial, as he described him (Sokoto) as “a pathological liar with no regards for the truth”.

Dissatisfied with the judgment, Sokoto filed a notice of appeal before the Court of Appeal, Abuja.

In a fresh motion on notice filed before the Federal High Court, Abuja by his lawyer, Sheriff Okoh, Kabiru Sokoto alleges that the Comptroller of Prisons and his men have made it impossible for him to access his lawyer, to enable him perfect his appeal process.

No date has been fixed for the hearing of the motion.

Boko Haram Is A Failure of Leadership – Ashiru

Dele Ashiru UNILAGA Political Scientist at the University of Lagos, UNILAG, Dele Ashiru, has attributed the state of insecurity in Nigeria to a failure of leadership, occasioned by the nature of Nigerian politics.

He also extended the purported leadership deficiency to the military forces which he accused of fighting terrorism without a strategy. Ashiru was Channels Television’s guest on Sunrise Daily.

He made reference to the Chief of Defence Staff, Alex Badeh, whom he accused of putting blames on the media rather than confronting the situation as the Chief of Defence Staff. He also berated the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta Affairs, Kingsley Kuku, for putting the responsibility of fighting Boko Haram on the people.

He asked, “Which people? The disillusioned people? The people who are on a daily basis being challenged by the failure of Government at all levels?”

“Boko Haram didn’t start as a terrorist organization; it became a terrorist group after the killing of Mohammed Yusuf. Until as we speak, the military captured Mohammed Yusuf alive, handed him over to the Police – if I’m correct, and between that space of two minutes, the guy was gone” he said, while explaining his earlier statement, “we must address the issue of justice.”

He noted that there cannot be peace without justice, irrespective of what the challenges facing the country were. He explained, “Whether you talk about militancy, agitation, or terrorism; at the root of all of these is the question of justice. There is injustice everywhere.”

He insisted that “Those who were extra judicially killed for whatever idea they profess deserve some form of justice and you need to also increase intelligence gathering.”

He continued, “Some people have been named; senators, governors – Kabiru Umar, was arrested in a government lodge in Abuja; Zakari Biu (Commissioner of Police who was dismissed for  engineering the jailbreak of Kabiru Sokoto). There is some kind of unholy alliance between some characters within the Nigerian state.”

On the role of the people in the fight against terrorism, he enthused, “the people can help only if they are sure that they have a leadership that can protect them in all ramifications.”

Amateur player gets call up for Super Eagles friendly with Niger

Super Eagles’ Head Coach, Stephen Keshi, on Wednesday invited 25 players from the Nigeria Premier League and one from the amateur rank for camping ahead of the international friendly against the Mena of Niger, billed for August 15 at the Seyni Koutche Stadium, Niamey.

Top of the list of invited players is Warri Wolves shot stopper and skipper Chigozie Agim, with Heartland FC’s Daniel Akpeyi and Moses Ocheje of CAF Champions League campaigners’ Sunshine Stars.

The surprise invitee is FAME Academy striker, Chibuzor Onyekwelu. A number of new faces in the defence include Enugu Rangers’ ace Osuchukwu Ogonna, Kwambe Solomon of Sunshine Stars, Heartland FC’s Francis Benjamin, Ezekiel Henry of Rising Stars and Umar Zango of high-riding Kano Pillars.

They join Azubuike Egwuekwe, Papa Idris, Juwon Oshaniwa and Godfrey Oboabona.

Midfielders and strikers include Kano Pillars’ boy-with-rising-profile Reuben Gabriel, Izu Azuka, Sunday Mba, Ejike Uzoenyi, Uche Kalu, Henry Uche and Obinna Nwachukwu. New faces are Christian Ofili, Solomon Jabason, Kabiru Umar, Chibuzor Onyekwelu, Sanusi Sani, Sibi Gwar and Philip Asuquo.

The players are expected to resume at the Bolton White Apartments, Abuja on Sunday, 5th August.

The invited players

Goalkeepers: Chigozie Agbim (Warri Wolves), Daniel Akpeyi (HeartlandFC), Moses Ocheje (Sunshine Stars)

Defenders: Azubuike Egwuekwe (Warri Wolves), Papa Idris (Kano Pillars), Juwon Oshaniwa (Sharks FC), Godfrey Oboabona (Sunshine Stars), Ezekiel Henry (Rising Stars), Francis Benjamin (Heartland FC), Umar Zango (Kano Pillars), Osuchukwu Ogonna (Enugu Rangers), Kwambe Solomon (Sunshine Stars)

Midfielders/Forwards: Ejike Uzoenyi (Enugu Rangers), Sunday Mba (Warri Wolves), Reuben Gabriel (Kano Pillars), Izu Azuka (Sunshine Stars), Uche Kalu (Enyimba FC), Henry Uche (Enyimba FC), Obinna Nwachukwu (Heartland FC), Christian Ofili (ABS FC), Solomon Jabason (Akwa United), Kabiru Umar (HeartlandFC), Chibuzor Onyekwelu (FAME FC),Sani (Gombe United), Sibi Gwar (Niger Tornadoes), Philip Asuquo (3SC).