Jonathan Reserves The Right To Suspend Sanusi- Legal Practitioner

The Chairman of National Newspaper Editorial Board, Mr Chris Akiri on Tuesday supported the claim by President Goodluck Jonathan that he reserves the right, constitutionally, to suspend the Governor of the Central Bank.

Mr Kiri, who is also a legal practitioner, is making this claim contrary to the feelings of some members of the House of Representatives.

Speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily on Tuesday, Mr Kiri insisted that “Some members of the House of Representatives are wrong while the president is right,”  explaining that “a cursory look at the provisions of the CBN Act relating to the appointment or removal of the governor of the Central Bank will show that they are wrong.

“Section 8(1) of that Act, empowers the president to appoint the governor or deputy governors of the bank. When you go to Section 11 (1)(F), it says the president can remove the governor of the Central Bank,” he said.

He also noted that people querying the president’s power to suspend or remove the Central Bank’s governor do so on the basis of Section 11 (1)(C), which says “the Governor of the Central Bank, ceases to be governor, if he has perpetrated certain atrocities that can be categorised under serious misconduct”.

Mr Akiri also called for the prosecution of the suspended Central Bank Governor, Mr Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, saying that since “he is alleged to have committed such atrocity, then he has to be probed and investigations have to be conducted into the allegations”

He said the Federal Government was trying to set up a panel that would investigate the allegations levelled against Mr Sanusi, insisting that to that effect, “they had to suspend him” from office.

“You can sue for wrongful termination of appointment, you can sue for wrongful dismissal” but warned that “you cannot sue for wrongful suspension,” he added.

With less than four months to the expiration of Sanusi’s tenure as governor, the legal practitioner hailed the nomination of Sanusi’s successor by the presidency. He described it as timely, adding that the nominee can go through the screening process before the time finally arrives for him to resume office.

He also said that the suspended governor was guilty of violating the provision of Section 50(3)(D) of the CBN Act as stipulated by the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria. According to Mr Akiri, the Act mandates the CBN Governor to “on a monthly basis, render an account of the returns of the bank”.

He goes further to quote Section 50(5), which mandates the CBN Governor to “send such returns to the president on a monthly basis” reiterating the allegations of the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria that “he has never done that since he assumed office in 2009”.

Mr Akiri also noted the illegal donations of money and colossal investments in an Islamic Bank in Malaysia as some of the financial recklessness the Federal Government hinged its decision to suspend Mr Sanusi.

Ondo Set To Establish State Commodities Exchange

Ondo State Government has decided to establish a commodities exchange which will help in strengthening the production, marketing and processing of the value chain of  cocoa in the state.

Briefing journalists at Cocoa Conference Hall of the Governor’s Office on the decisions taken at the last Executive Council meeting, the State Commissioner for Information, Mr Kayode Akinmade revealed that the commodities exchange will further help in transforming cocoa marketing in the State by ensuring that farmers get adequate rewards on the produce of their farms.

He added that the state ministries of Agriculture, Natural Resources, Community Development, Commerce & Industry and Justice in conjunction with Consultants are working on the modalities that will give life to the Akure/Ondo State Commodities exchange.

Also corroborating his assertion, the State Commissioner for Justice and Attorney General, Eyitayo Jegede (SAN) said the commodities exchange will provide a platform where all farmers, traders and end users of cocoa assemble under one roof to determine the price of cocoa.

On his part, the State Commissioner for Agriculture, Alhaji Lasisi Oluboyo informed that a lot of research is being done with officials sent to Malaysia to understudy the system.

He added that it is intended to improve the production of cocoa in the state this year far above the 65 million metric tonnes recorded last year.

Malaysian Court Rules Use Of “Allah” Exclusive To Muslims

A Malaysian court ruled on Monday that a Christian newspaper may not use the word “Allah” to refer to God, a landmark decision on an issue that has fanned religious tension and raised questions over minority rights in the mainly Muslim country.

The unanimous decision by three Muslim judges in Malaysia’s appeals court overturned a 2009 ruling by a lower court that allowed the Malay-language version of the newspaper, The Herald, to use the word Allah – as many Christians in Malaysia say has been the case for centuries.

“The usage of the word Allah is not an integral part of the faith in Christianity,” chief judge Mohamed Apandi Ali said in the ruling. “The usage of the word will cause confusion in the community.”

The decision coincides with heightened ethnic and religious tension in Malaysia after a polarizing May election, in which the long-ruling coalition was deserted by urban voters that included a large section of minority ethnic Chinese.

In recent months, Prime Minister Najib Razak has sought to consolidate his support among majority ethnic Malays, who are Muslim by law, and secure the backing of traditionalists ahead of a crucial ruling party assembly this month.

His new government – dominated by his Malay-based United Malays National Organization – has toughened security laws and introduced steps to boost a decades-old affirmative action policy for ethnic Malays, reversing liberal reforms aimed at appealing to a broader section of the multi-ethnic country.

In its case, the government argued that the word Allah is specific to Muslims and that the then-home minister’s decision in 2008 to deny the newspaper permission to print it was justified on the basis of public order.

About 200 Muslims outside the court in the administrative capital Putrajaya, greeted the decision with shouts of “Allahu Akbar” (God is Greatest).

“As a Muslim, defending the usage of the term Allah qualifies as jihad. It is my duty to defend it,” said Jefrizal Ahmad Jaafar, 39. Jihad is Islamic holy war or struggle.

RIGHTS OF THE MINORITY

Lawyers for the Catholic paper had argued that the word Allah predated Islam and had been used extensively by Malay-speaking Christians in Malaysia’s part of Borneo island for centuries.

They say they will appeal against Monday’s decision to Malaysia’s highest court.

“The nation must protect and support the rights of the minority,” said Father Lawrence Andrew, the founding editor of the Herald. “God is an integral part of every religion.”

Christians in Indonesia and much of the Arab world continue to use the word without opposition from Islamic authorities. Churches in the Borneo states of Sabah and Sarawak have said they will continue to use the word regardless of the ruling.

The paper won a judicial review of the home minister’s decision in 2009, triggering an appeal from the federal government. The court ruled on Monday that the constitutional rights of the publisher had not been infringed.

Ethnic Malays make up 60 percent of Malaysia’s 28 million people, with Chinese accounting for more than a quarter and ethnic Indians also forming a substantial minority. Christians account for about 9 percent.

Anwar Vows To Reform Malaysia Electoral System

Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim has vowed to lead a “fierce movement” to reform the country’s electoral system and challenge the results of an election he lost, starting with a rally of supporters this week.

Anwar has refused to accept the victory of the long-ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition in Sunday’s (May 5) election, saying that the result was tainted by widespread fraud, including the use of foreign immigrants to vote for the governing alliance.

Anwar said it is therefore the dictate of conscience to reject the election result until it is rectified and a reasonable justification is provided by the EC (Electoral Commission).

The opposition alliance won 89 seats in the country’s parliament compared to the BN’s 133, despite the ruling coalition receiving a minority of votes nationally for the first time in 44 years.

The 65-year-old former finance minister said the opposition had ample evidence to challenge the election result in up to 29 seats — enough to call into question the overall national result.

According to Anwar, his movement was able to monitor the boxes in the custody of the policeand the officers said ‘it is under their purview, and we cannot enter’. So for four days the boxes were there.

“You may trust these people like saints. You have crooks and corrupt people managing and you want us to accept that readily. We cannot compromise, with the need for fair election result,” Anwar said.

Anwar said tomorrow’s rally would mark the start of a “fierce movement” to reform the nation’s election system.

“I shall address fellow Malaysians tomorrow in Kelana Jaya Stadium at 8:30 p.m. fully dressed in black. This shall be a beginning for a fierce movement to clean this country from election malpractice and fraud, for there is no opportunity for renewal without a clean and fair election.”

The rally is planned to take place in a stadium with a capacity of about 40,000 people in Selangor state near Kuala Lumpur, which was retained by the opposition in state polls.

He called for the government to recognise the need for a real democracy.

“Please for once, for once, see the change in the mood of the people. Don’t think that you can continue with the semi-authoritarian manner in treating people like fools, like idiots. Don’t think the media should be treated like the manner (state newspaper) the Utusan is treating our people. They think the malay are so gullible and fools to consider all this politics is about the Chinese, and therefore you play that game. I am here and I remain committed, I will defend the rights of the Malaysian, be it Malay, Chinese, Indian,” .

Malaysia’s government has rejected the opposition’s fraud claims, saying the result was in line with opinion polls that had shown the BN with a substantial advantage in recent weeks.

Facebook Posts:Man arrested for insulting sultan in Malaysia

The sister of a Malaysian man who has been charged with insulting a state sultan on Facebook says he is innocent and plans to lodge a complaint over his detention.

Anisa Abdul Jalil, sister of Ahmad Abdul Jalil, says her brother was charged Thursday with making offensive postings on Facebook last month.

She says the charges are ridiculous because there is no evidence linking Ahmad to the posts in question, which were made by someone using the name “Zul Yahaya.”

According to AP, Ahmad was freed on bail Thursday after six days of detention. Anisa says he will file a complaint with police for unlawful detention and intimidation.

Nine Malaysian states have sultans and other royal figures. Though their roles are largely ceremonial, acts provoking hatred against them are considered seditious.

 

Nigerian student charged for bank fraud in Malaysia

A Nigerian student, Francis Luther Osayanem, 33, has been charged with two offences, including trying to defraud a bank officer of $9,000 using a fake passport and for possession of a fake passport.

Francis was denied bail by a magistrate’s court in Malaysia after his proposed sureties failed to even identify him by name. A local media site, thestaronline reported.

Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), S. Malini Anne urged the court to set the bail at RM40, 000 for the first offence and RM5, 000 for the second with two local sureties, considering the monetary amount involved.

She also asked that Francis surrender his passport to the court, should bail be given.

Magistrate Erry Shahriman Nor Aripin requested the bailers to give details about their so called “friend”, but they failed to even name him despite his name being read aloud along with the charge.

The magistrate denied Francis bail, saying the bailers did not qualify as suitable sureties.

Both alleged offences occurred at the RHB Bank in Kuala Lumpur City Centre (KLCC), on Jalan Ampang at 10.05am on July 26.

The first charge is punishable under section 420 of the Penal Code with up to 10 years prison, whipping and a fine.

The second, an offence under Section 12(1) of the Passports Act 1966 is punishable by a maximum five years prison term and a fine, if convicted.

All laws quoted are according to the codes of British colonised Asian country.

The case has been adjourned till September 26.

Navy intensifies search for kidnapped foreigners

Security agents have increased the search for four foreigners that were kidnapped during an attack on a vessel belonging to an oil services company.

The attack occurred at the Gulf of Guinea when the suspected pirates stormed a vessel belonging to the Sea Trucks Group.

The Nigerian Navy spokesman, Commodore Kabir Aliyu said “We have intensified our search for the kidnappers and the abducted four foreigners,”

Another naval officer said, the search for the foreigners has continued in the creeks and the waterways in the region.

He added that, We are leaving no stone unturned in our efforts to get back these four foreigners who were kidnapped aboard the vessel. We are redoubling our efforts.

While the spokesman for Sea Trucks Group Corrie van Kessel, said “We are very focused on getting our crew back safely.”

She added categorically, if contacts have been established with the abductors and efforts being made to secure their freedom, saying that releasing such information “could jeopardize current efforts.”

She also confirmed that four abducted foreigners were from Indonesia, Malaysia, Iran and Thailand.

It was reported that four expatriates were reported to have been kidnapped from the vessel; two sailors were killed.”
The gunmen men killed two men while two others escaped unhurt.

The International Maritime Bureau (IMB) said in a report released last month that there had been 32 piracy incidents recorded in the Gulf of Guinea in the first half of 2012, 25 attacks in 2011.

Nigerian faces death penalty in Malaysia for drug trafficking

A Nigerian man and an Australian nurse face the possibility of death sentence after a Malaysian court on Tuesday charged them with trafficking methamphetamines in the country.

Anthony Esikalam Ndidi was charged with Emma Louise L’Aiguille, in a Kuala Lumpur court two weeks after police said they were arrested in possession of one kilogramme of the banned drug.

Drug trafficking carries a mandatory death sentence by hanging in Malaysia, where hundreds of people are on death row, mostly for drug offences.

Anyone found to be in possession of at least 50 grams of methamphetamine is considered a trafficker.

The duo were in a car when police arrested them, attorney Muhammad Shafee Abdullah told reporters after the court appearance.

Muhammad Shafee was representing the Australian nurse while Ndidi was not represented by legal counsel at the hearing.

Police told L’Aiguille, who had been driving, that drugs were later found in the car, the attorney said.

Muhammad Shafee said two other Nigerians — L’Aiguille’s boyfriend and another man — had also been in the car but had left the vehicle just prior to the arrests. Police are currently searching for the boyfriend, he added.

“She is completely depressed. She just does not understand how all this could happen to her. She was just driving the car,” Muhammad Shafee said.

He said L’Aiguille was a nurse who was in Malaysia as a tourist and had visited the country several times over the past two years.

He complained that defence lawyers were only allowed one ten-minute meeting with her before the court appearance.

The next court appearance was set for October 1. Pleas are not normally heard at the time defendants are charged.

Since 1960, more than 440 people have been executed in Malaysia, including two Australians put to death in 1986 for heroin trafficking that made headlines as they were the first Westerners to be executed under tough new anti-drug laws.

Arsenal confirms Nigerian summer tour

English Premier League club, Arsenal have officially made public when their first-team will make the tour of Nigeria.

The Gunners announced on their official website on Friday that their “first-team squad will travel to Nigeria this summer for a pre-season match in Abuja on Sunday, August 5.”

“Arsenal Football Club is delighted to announce that the first-team squad will travel to Nigeria this summer for a pre-season match in Abuja on Sunday, August 5.

“In what will be the Gunners’ first match on Nigerian soil, Arsene Wenger’s side will play at the 60,000 capacity Abuja National Stadium. Arsenal’s opposition will be confirmed soon and is likely to be a leading African national team,” the announcement read on the official website of Arsenal.

“The visit to Nigeria will conclude an exciting pre-season tour schedule for Arsenal, who return to both China and Malaysia in July, following the success of last term’s Asia Tour.

“Further details regarding the match in Nigeria will feature on Arsenal.com as soon as they are confirmed.”

The Gunners will start their overseas tour in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on July 24 before travelling to China and Hong Kong in same month of July.

 

Nigerian sentenced to death for drug trafficking in Malaysia

A Malaysian High Court on Monday sentenced a Nigerian man to death after he was found guilty of drug trafficking.

Judicial Commissioner, Mohd Zaki Abdul Wahab said the prosecution had proved its case beyond reasonable doubt against 34-year-old Oluigbo Eric Chimeze.

Mr Oluigbo allegedly distributed 22.159kg of cannabis at a traffic light in Napoh, heading to Bukit Kayu Hitam at about 6.45am on Sept 1, 2010.
He was charged under Section 39 (B) of the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952 which carries a mandatory death penalty upon conviction.

The accused was represented by Counsel B. Murthy while prosecution was conducted by deputy public prosecutor, Noor Fadzila Ishak.
According to the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952 of Malaysia as amended in 2006:

1. No person shall, on his own behalf or on behalf of any other person, whether or not such other person is in Malaysia —

(a) traffic in a dangerous drug,

(b) offer to traffic in a dangerous drug, or

(c) do or offer to do an act preparatory to or for the purpose of trafficking in a dangerous drug.

2. Any person who contravenes any of the provisions of subsection (1) shall be guilty of an offence against this Act and shall be punished on conviction with death.

The number of people executed in Malaysia remains unknown, even as reported death sentences for drugs appear to be increasing in recent years. While Malaysia is generally not considered to be a high-volume executing state it has sentenced people to death in high numbers, mostly for drug related offences.

Provisions of the Dangerous Drugs Act also give Malaysian authorities the power to detain drug trafficking suspects without warrant and without a court appearance for up to sixty days. After such period, the Home Ministry can issue a detention order, which entitles the detainee to an appearance before a court to argue for his or her release. Without the court’s release of the suspect, the person can be held for successive two-year intervals. An advisory board reviews the suspect’s detention, but such a process falls far short of the procedural rights of a court proceeding. It has been alleged that police detain people under this Act after they have been acquitted by the courts.

Only High Courts have the jurisdiction to sentence someone to death. Juvenile cases involving the death penalty are heard in High Courts instead of the juvenile court where other juvenile cases are heard. Appeals to the Court of Appeal and the Federal Court are automatic. The last resort for the convicted is to plead pardon for clemency. Pardons or clemency are granted by the Ruler or Yang di-Pertua Negeri (Governor) of the state where the crime is committed or the Yang di-Pertuan Agong if the crime is committed in the Federal Territories or when involving members of the armed forces. Death sentences are carried out by hanging as provided in Section 281 of the Criminal Procedure Code. Pregnant women and children may not be sentenced to death.

Malaysia sentenced 50 people to death for drug offences in 2009 – more than double the figure from 2008.

Malaysia:Opposition Leader Acquitted of Sodomy

The case brought against Malaysian Opposition leader; Anwar Ibrahim for a trial that has been running two years ended as the Opposition leader was discharged and acquitted of sodomy.

Anwar Ibrahim

The Malaysian Court Judge Mohamad Diah knocked the case off as the DNA evidence submitted by the prosecution was counted as not reliable.

The judgement given has been seen as showing the non-influence of government in the day to day running of the judiciary in the country.

Anwar Inbrahim has continually denied the charge brought against him as it was also seen as a move by the government to dent his political career.

He was accused of having canal knowledge of a former male aide and if Anwar Ibrahim was found guilty in the jugdement he would have been jailed for 20 years as the muslim-majority country sees sodomy as an illegality.

After the judgement, Anwar Ibrahim thanked God for the judgement and that justice has prevailed and he has been vindicated.

His wife and daughters joined him in cheers also.

Anwar Ibarahim led the Opposition to unprecedented gains at the 2008 elections and two months after the allegation was brought against him.

This judgement has been seen as a resounding one as the country is preparing for the 2013 elections in anticipation that Anwar Ibrahim who is now a force to reckon with in the political arena will likely produce the change the country will be needing to ouster the corrupt government of Malaysia.

Anwar Ibrahim Awaiting Verdict in Sodomy Case

Opposition Leader, Anwar Ibrahim

The Opposition leader in Malaysia, Anwar Ibrahim, whose trial recently ended in a sodomy case against him and a 26 year old former male aide in Kuala Lampur high court is facing 20 years in prison if found guilty of the charge.

Although trial finally went to a close after nearly over 2 years, the climax of it which is the verdict has been set for January the 9th 2012.

DNA samples and the credibility of the accuser; Saiful Bukhari Azlan were put to question by Anwar Ibrahim’s lawyer which were used to link the Opposition Leader to the charges.

There has been speculations that the charges were merely a setup from the political arena to tarnish the image and reputation of the Opposition leader so as not to clinch power in the polls.

This will be a repeat of 1998 while Anwar was the Deputy Prime Minister and was sent to jail for sodomy.

Malaysia’s next elections are not due until 2013, but the prime minister is expected to call for an early general election next year before economic growth in the country slows further.