Senate To Begin Process Of Issuing Arrest Warrant To Lamorde

lamorde-efcc-senateThe Nigerian Senate is to begin the process of issuing an arrest warrant to  former EFCC Chairman, Mr Ibrahim Lamorde.

At the continuation of legislative proceedings on Thursday, the Senate directed its Committee on Ethics Privileges and Public Petition to begin the process of issuing a warrant of arrest to the former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over allegations of diverting EFCC’s recovered loot.

The Senate Committee on Ethics is recommending that an arrest warrant be issued to the former anti-graft agency boss for failing to appear before the committee, despite several invitations from the committee.

The Ethics Committee has been investigating allegations levelled on Mr Lamorde by a petitioner, Mr George Uboh, who is asking the Senate to investigate the Former EFCC Chairman over allegations of Financial Crime and Corruption while in office.

Lamorde’s Questioning: Keyamo Sues Nigerian Senate

Keyamo Writes Senate, Serves Court ProcessesThe Bailiff of the Federal High Court in Abuja has served the Nigerian Senate with court processes filed by Mr Festus Keyamo.

Mr Keyamo, who is a lawyer to the immediate past Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr Ibrahim Lamorde, is challenging the Senate and its committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions on their competence to question his client’s activities while in office.

A statement signed by a private secretary to Mr Keyamo revealed that a letter had also been sent to the Chairman of the Senate committee.

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

The former EFCC boss had challenged the powers of the Senate and its committee to invite him to appear before them.

In an originating summons filed by Mr Keyamo, Lamorde is asking the court to determine whether the Senate can invite the former EFCC boss to appear before them, as a person whose conduct of affairs is being investigated by them in relation to issues concerning the office he vacated.

EFCC Decries Politicians’ Use Of Anti-Graft Body For Election

EFCCThe Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has asked politicians to stop using the anti-graft body as a tool to achieve their political ambition, especially as some of them are still standing trial for alleged graft.

The Chairman of the Commission, Mr Ibrahim Lamorde told a news conference in Abuja, that the fact that the Commission has not been publicising its achievement does not mean it has been docile.

According to him, over 126 convictions have been recorded by the Commission in 2014, a figure that represents more than any anti-fraud agency in the world, has achieved, he added.

Ending corruption has been one of the campaign promises of most political parties in the country. While some of the parties have accused the EFCC of being docile in performing its statutory responsibilities.

However, the Commission has warned politicians to stop using the anti-graft for playing politics as EFCC remains apolitical .

Mr Ibrahim Lamorde attributed the inability of the Commission to completely prosecute some of its cases in court as a consequence of the accused persons and their lawyers exploiting loop holes in the laws and the courts.

The EFCC  Chairman however, said contrary to the allegation of performance below expectation, the Commission had continued to make progress by increasing the number of convictions of accused persons from 65 in 2009 to 126 in 2014.

Fuel Subsidy Scam: Trial of Bamanga Tukur’s Son, Others To Commence In May

Trial of the fuel subsidy fraud case filed by the Economic & Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) against Mahmud Tukur, son of the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Bamanga Tukur and others, is to begin in May, after a failed attempt to settle out of court.

Mahmud Tukur, Alex Ochongor, their firm, Eterna Oil and Gas, and Abdullahi Alao, son of Ibadan-based businessman, Abdulazeez Arisekola-Alao, are facing nine counts of fuel subsidy fraud amounting to about N1.2 billion before a Lagos High Court sitting in Ikeja.

Counsel for the EFCC, Mr. Tayo Olukotun, told the presiding judge, Justice Adeniyi Onigbanjo, at the resumed hearing of the matter on Wednesday that the settlement talks had “hit brick wall” and the lead prosecution counsel, Mr Rotimi Jacobs had asked him to pick a date for trial.

His position is, however, different from that of the counsel for Mahmud  Tukur, Mr. Tayo Oyetibo (SAN), who told the court that the talks were awaiting the input of Mr. Ibrahim Lamorde, the chairman of the  EFCC.

When the Judge sought clarification on the actual status of the talks, Mr Oyetibo said the lead prosecuting counsel, Mr Jacobs had told him that the chairman of the EFCC was not available last week and so the defence was looking at picking a date in early March to meet him and continue the talks.

Mr Oyetibo, however, expressed dissatisfaction over Mr Jacobs’ failure to communicate the latest development to the prosecuting team.

At the previous proceedings of December 13, 2012, the defendants, Mahmud Tukur and Alex Ochonogor had, through their counsel, sought for time to conclude the settlement talks with the EFCC.

Justice Onigbanjo has, however, fixed the 6th and 7th of May for the commencement of trial following the disagreement of the parties in the settlement talks.

The Judge also granted Abdullai Alao permission to travel to the United States of America for the treatment of his son.

The documents are to be returned to the custody of the EFCC on or before the 24th of February.

The other two defendants, Tukur and Ochonogor have also indicated to the court that they would be filing similar application to embark on a business trip to South Africa.

It will be recalled that Justice Onigbanjo had on December 13, 2012 granted similar application to the duo for business trips to the United Kingdom and France, asking them to return their passports to the EFCC on or before January 25.

EFCC to commence undercover operation in Nigerian ports

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has turned its searchlight on the Nigerian Ports with the commencement of undercover operations at the nation’s ports starting from Monday.

The Executive Chairman of EFCC, Mr Ibrahim Lamorde made this known in Abuja during a meeting with the Special Adviser to the President on Performance Monitoring and Evaluation, Professor Sylvester Monye.

Mr Lamorde noted that the anti-graft agency will work in line with the reformation of Nigerian ports to see that unnecessary bottlenecks are removed.

Professor Monye, who was at the EFCC office to solicit support for ports reformation, blamed some government agencies for deliberately mounting obstacles, creating bottlenecks and exploiting genuine importers.

He assured that the ports reform committee will apply itself to building up the ports into institutions with the right structures for better productivity.