The Law Will Take Its Course In Kanu, Igboho’s Cases – Nigerian Govt

 

The Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, on Monday said the law will take its course in the cases involving separatist leaders Sunday Adeyemo popularly called Sunday Igboho and Nnamdi Kanu.

While Igboho, a campaigner for Yoruba self-determination was arrested in July last year in the Benin Republic and faces trial, Kanu, who is the leader of the outlawed Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB), is being prosecuted by the Federal Government.

But speaking during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today, Malami said the Federal Government will not interfere in Igboho’s travails in the Benin Republic.

“It is a matter being prosecuted at a foreign country and within the context of that prosecution, one thing that is visible is that he has been taken into custody on account of breaching the laws applicable in a foreign nation. With that in mind, he is being prosecuted,” he said during the show.

“We will allow the law of the nation that was indeed breached to take its natural course and perhaps, maybe thereafter bringing him back home after the conclusion of the trial over there for the purpose of facing the Nigerian law that was accordingly breached.

“The position of things is that we are not interfering in aborting the existing prosecution in the foreign land, taking into consideration that the laws that were alleged to have been breached were indeed the laws of a foreign nation.”

READ ALSO: Trial Of Nnamdi Kanu’s Co-Defendants: Court Fines AGF Malami N200,000

A photo combination of Nnamdi Kanu and Sunday Igboho.

 

When asked if the Muhammadu Buhari administration was considering a political solution to free both separatist leaders, the Minister neither confirmed nor denied it. Rather, he said the Federal Government may consider the possibility of a political solution for Igboho after the conclusion of his prosecution in the Benin Republic.

While explaining that there are a lot of possibilities in terms of prosecution, he, however, kept mute on Kanu’s travails.

“Maybe those considerations may be considered or brought to bear when he is eventually brought back after the conclusion of the trial at the foreign nation.

“In terms of prosecution, you cannot rule out any possibility. In terms of prosecution, the laws of the land naturally take their natural course. In our laws, there are a lot of possibilities. One thing I can tell you as it is now, the law is taking its natural course.”

The minister also spoke about efforts made by the current administration in fighting corruption in the country.

He faulted the report by Transparency International that scored Nigeria 24 out of 100 points in the 2021 index, placing the nation as the second most corrupt country in West Africa, after Guinea.

In the 2021 Corruption Perceptions Index released by Transparency International on January 25, Nigeria dropped five places, despite the Federal Government’s avowed fight against graft.

But Malami, who is the chief legal officer, described the rating as baseless, insisting that Buhari’s government has done well.

DSS Releases Two Igboho Aides After 114 Days In Custody

Two of Sunday Igboho’s aides, Jamiu Noah Oyetunji and Amudat Habibat Babatunde (Lady K) were released from DSS custody on Friday, October 22.

 

The Department of State Services (DSS) has released the last two aides of embattled Yoruba Nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, from its custody.

Those released include Jamiu Noah Oyetunji and Amudat Habibat Babatunde (Lady K) who were held back in detention earlier in September when their colleagues were released.

Speaking on the latest development regarding the case, lead counsel to the Igboho’s aides – Pelumi Olajengbesi stated that the matter is still a subject of litigation.

He added that no further comments regarding the issue will be made for the time being.

Read Also: There Is A Link Between Igboho And Terrorism Financier, Says Nigerian Govt

In July, the DSS carried out a midnight raid of Igboho’s Soka house in Ibadan, Oyo State, and arrested 12 of the activist’s allies, whisking them away to Abuja, where they were kept in detention.

After a brief legal tussle in August, the DSS released 8 of the aides and then another 2 were released in September.

Those earlier released were Abideen Shittu, Abdullateef Onaolapo, Ayobami Donald, Olakunle Oluwapelumi, Dikeola Ademola, Bamidele Sunday, Raji Kazeem, Taiwo Tajudeen, Tajudeen Rinloye and Uthman Adelabu.

The DSS had been ordered by Justice Obiora Egwuatu of the Federal High Court, Abuja on August 4, to release all 12 detained associates of Igboho, however, the secret police kept two in their custody.

Not satisfied with the ruling, the DSS went ahead to slam five-count terrorism charges against the two aides.

In his reaction to the development, Mr Olajengbesi vowed to file a contempt of court against the secret service regarding the unlawful detention of his clients.

“Sequel to the refusal of the DSS to release the other detainees, concerted efforts were immediately made to resolve all technical issues raised by the DSS.

Accordingly, on Friday the 3rd of September, 2021, all issues raised were resolved and we proceeded to the Headquarters of the DSS to demand the immediate release of the four (4) remaining detainees in their custody,” the statement read.

“Regrettably and in the whimsical habit of the DSS, only two of the remaining four received their freedom while the other two namely; Amudat Habibat Babatunde and Jamiu Noah Oyetunji, remain in the unlawful custody of the DSS. No valid reasons on law were availed the Legal Team for this willful disobedience of the rule of law and court,” the lawyer had elucidated back in September.

He stressed that DSS is a law enforcement agency and should not be allowed to carry out its official responsibility with impunity and absolute disrespect to the law of the land, especially where the constitutional rights and liberty of citizens are at stake.

As at the time of filing this report, it was unclear why the secret security agency chose to release the last two aides in their custody, more details regarding the case are expected in the coming days, as the DSS is yet to make its formal statement.

There Is A Link Between Igboho And Terrorism Financier, Says FG

 

The Nigerian Government says it has established a connection between Yoruba nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, and a firm being investigated for terrorism.

Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, stated this at a news briefing in Abuja on Friday.

He disclosed that the government has received the report on financers of Sunday Igboho, saying the findings revealed that Igboho is a director and signatory to a firm – Adesun International Concept Limited – registered on April 23, 2010.

“Investigation reveals that Adesun International Concept Ltd (belonging to Igboho) transferred the sum of N12,750,000 to Abbal Bako & Sons,” the AGF said. “It might be recalled that Abbal Bako & Sons and its promoter, Abdullahi Umar Usman, are suspects in the ongoing joint terrorist financing investigation.

“Abdullahi Umar Usman is by way of financial transaction connected to Surajo Abubakar Muhammad (who was sentenced to life imprisonment in UAE on charges of financing terrorism [Boko Haram]). This report shows the nexus between separatists’ agitation, terrorism financing, and disruptions of peace in the country.”

 

The company, according to Malami, also has Oladele Oyetunji and Aderopo Adeyemo as directors, and is linked to 43 bank accounts in nine banks.

He said the major financier of the Yoruba nation agitator was found to be a lawmaker in the National Assembly, adding that he received a total of N127,145,000 from his financiers between October 22, 2013, and September 28, 2020, through his firm.

The AGF added that transaction outflows to the tune of N273,198,200 were recorded from Igboho’s account between March 15, 2013, and March 11, 2021.

He revealed that the report also found connections of financial transactions between Igboho’s firm and some construction companies and businesses, among others.

“Having received the reports, the Federal Government remains solute in its determination to have a peaceful Nigeria,” said Malami.

“The Federal Government will do the needful, within the context of the legal provisions, in ensuring that the matter is giving the deserved attention and those found guilty will be made to face the wrath of the law.”

Igboho Is Safer In Benin Than Nigeria, Says Lawyer

A file photo of Mr Sunday Adeyemo.

 

Yoruba nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho, is safer in neighbouring Benin Republic than in Nigeria, one of his lawyers said on Saturday.

“He (Igboho) is safer in Benin,” Ibrahim David Salami told international news agency AFP. “He is not at all safe in Nigeria. Sending him to Nigeria means certain death.”

Channels Television had reported that armed security men stormed Igboho’s residence in Ibadan on July 1, an incident that resulted in a firefight that sparked tension in the Soka area of the Oyo State capital.

Hours later, the Department of State Services (DSS) claimed responsibility in a statement, saying the invasion was a raid by a joint team of security operatives.

It claimed that Igboho and others plotted to wage a violent insurrection against the Nigerian State and asked the Yoruba nation agitator to turn himself in at the nearest security agency.

Igboho’s associates arrested by the DSS were later paraded and detained for over two months despite the ruling of a Federal High Court in Abuja ordering their release.

The Yoruba nation agitator, on the other hand, fled the country to Benin but was later arrested by authorities en route to Germany.

While the Federal Government is making effort to extradite him, Salami insisted that Nigerian authorities have yet to officially begin the process.

“What we feared at the start was an extradition request but there is no such demand,” the lawyer said.

“The fact that he is being investigated for a violation that could have been committed on Beninese territory is a hurdle to an extradition request as this case will first have to be sorted out.”

NASS Member Among High-Profile Financiers Of Separatists, Says Buhari

 

A member of the National Assembly is among the high-profile individual sponsoring the leaders of secessionist groups in the country, President Muhammadu Buhari said on Friday.

He, however, did not reveal the identity of the lawmaker, neither did he say if the individual is a member of the House of Representatives or Senate.

“The recent arrests of Nnamdi Kanu and Sunday Adeyemo, and the ongoing investigations being conducted have revealed certain high-profile financiers behind these individuals,” the President said in his broadcast to the nation to commemorate Nigeria’s 61st independence anniversary.

“We are vigorously pursuing these financiers, including one identified as a serving member of the National Assembly.

While Kanu is the leader of the proscribed Indigenous People Of Biafra (IPOB), Adeyemo – who is popularly known as Sunday Igboho, is a Yoruba nation agitator.

Both men had fled the country following raids on their homes by security operatives and prosecution by the government.

Kanu was arrested and brought back to the country in June, four years after he fled the country following what he said was an invasion of his residence in Afara-Ukwu, near Umuahia, the Abia State capital.

Igboho, on the other hand, fled to neighbouring Benin Republic in July after his house in Ibadan, Oyo State was raided.

He was subsequently arrested by Benin authorities en route to Germany, and an extradition battle is ongoing to determine his fate.

Read the full speech of the President below:

INDEPENDENCE DAY ADDRESS BY HIS EXCELLENCY, MUHAMMADU BUHARI, PRESIDENT OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA ON THE OCCASION OF NIGERIA’S SIXTY-FIRST INDEPENDENCE ANNIVERSARY, FRIDAY 1ST OCTOBER, 2021.

Citizens of Nigeria.

It is with full gratitude to God that today, we celebrate Nigeria’s sixty-first Independence Anniversary.

2. For 1st of October 1960 to happen, all hands were on deck. East, West, North all came together to celebrate freedom. Today should not only serve as a reminder of the day the British handed over the reins of power to Nigerians, but also unified Nigerians from all ethnic groups, religions, and regions.

3. Today, despite the challenges we face, most Nigerians still maintain the spirit of 1st October. That positive outlook and determination to make Nigeria a peaceful and prosperous nation. It is due to this collective attitude that Nigeria doggedly continues to remain a united and indivisible nation.

4. Fellow Nigerians, the past eighteen months have been some of the most difficult periods in the history of Nigeria. Since the civil war, I doubt whether we have seen a period of more heightened challenges than what we have witnessed in this period.

5. Our original priorities for 2020 were to continue stabilising our economy following the deep recession while restoring peace in areas confronted with security challenges. But the COVID-19 pandemic and its devastating impact on all nations meant we needed to shift gears and re-strategise.

6. Nigerians came together as one to fight against COVID-19. It is this attitude and by the special grace of God, we continue to survive the pandemic as a nation and indeed, provide leadership and example at regional and international levels.

7. The doomsday scenario predicted for our country never came. Even as the Delta variant continues to spread, we have built the capacity we need to respond now and into the future.

8. I will therefore appeal to Nigerians not to take COVID lightly, adhere to public health and social measures, put your mask on and get vaccinated. We can control this pandemic, but it requires effort on everybody’s part. The investments we made in response to COVID-19 will also serve our country to tackle any future disease outbreaks or pandemics.

9. Despite the global inequity in access to vaccines, the Government of Nigeria has continued to explore all available options to ensure Nigerians have free access to safe and effective vaccines.

10. Some five million vaccine doses have been administered to Nigerians through efforts led by the National Primary Health Care Development Agency and we will continue to explore options for purchase or acquisition of vaccines such as through COVAX and the African Vaccine Acquisition Trust.

11. I will take this opportunity to remind the global community that the current state of access to COVID-19 vaccines is unacceptable. We cannot afford a situation where a handful of countries keep the global vaccine supply to themselves at the expense of other nations.

12. We must act now to accelerate equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. This is the message I conveyed to the international community in New York last week.

13. As we push to source vaccines for our immediate needs, we shall invest more to support our pharmaceutical and research agencies to come up with ideas for locally developed vaccines. Should another pandemic arise in the future, Our question is simple; will Nigeria be ready?

14. Accordingly, I have directed the Ministries of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Health, Education, and Science and Technology to work with Nigerian and International pharmaceutical companies and research organisations to enhance Nigeria’s domestic pharmaceutical capacity.

15. Already, the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority is raising a $200 million fund for this initiative that will complement the Central Bank of Nigeria’s ongoing N85 billion Healthcare Sector Research and Development Intervention Scheme to support local researchers in the development of vaccines and drugs to combat communicable and non-communicable diseases, including COVID-19.

Fellow Nigerians, this is just the beginning.

16. Similarly, on our approach to food security, I am proud to announce Nigeria has commenced its journey to pharmaceutical independence.

17. This journey, which will take years to achieve but will ultimately result in Nigerian-based companies developing the Active Pharmaceutical substances and competence needed for us to make our own drugs and vaccines.

Fellow Nigerians,

18. As our economy continues to open after the COVID-19 related lockdowns, we have also seen the resurgence of insecurity in certain parts of the country.

19. In the last four months, the gallant men and women of the Military and Security Agencies have made tremendous progress in addressing these new security challenges. We are taking the fight to our enemies from all angles and we are winning.

20. Earlier this year, I launched the Integrated National Security and Waterways Protection Infrastructure, the Deep Blue Project, which is designed to secure Nigerian waters up to the Gulf of Guinea. I am happy to inform Nigerians that we have taken delivery of key assets for this project and very soon, its impact will be felt.

21. In the North East region alone, over eight thousand Boko Haram terrorists have surrendered.

22. To support our surge approach to fighting banditry, the Nigerian Armed Forces have recruited over 17,000 personnel across all ranks. Furthermore, I have also approved for the Nigerian Police Force to recruit 10,000 police officers annually over the next six years.

23. I am also pleased to note that most of the Air Force platforms we acquired over the past three years have started to arrive in Nigeria. These will positively impact our security operations in all parts of the country.

24. In line with section 14(2)(b) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), the security and welfare of Nigerians continue to be the prime focus on which programmes and projects of our government revolves.

25. Therefore, as a Government, we are ready to arrest and prosecute all persons inciting violence through words or action. Our resolve for a peaceful, united and one Nigeria remains resolute and unwavering.

26. That said, our hope is not to fight for peace. We can always settle our grievances peacefully without spilling any blood.

27. I will therefore take this opportunity, on this special day that symbolises the unity and oneness of our great nation, to ask all Nigerians to embrace peace and dialogue, whatever your grievances.

28. The seeds of violence are planted in people’s heads through words. Reckless utterances of a few have led to losses of many innocent lives and destruction of properties.

29. Such unfiltered and unsubstantiated lies and hate speeches by a few evil persons must be stopped. Our media houses and commentators must move away from just reporting irresponsible remarks to investigating the truth behind all statements and presenting the facts to readers.

30. We must all come out and speak against the lies being peddled. At this point, I would want to sincerely appreciate the large number of our Traditional, Religious and Community leaders as well as other well-meaning Nigerians who, in their various fora are openly spreading the message of peaceful co-existence and conflict settlement through dialogue in their respective communities.

31. Nigeria is for all of us. Its unity is not negotiable. And its ultimate success can only be achieved if we all come together with a common goal of having peace and prosperity for our nation.

32. We shall continue to work on dialogue based solutions to address legitimate grievances. But we remain ready to take decisive actions against secessionist agitators and their sponsors who threaten our national security.

33. The recent arrests of Nnamdi Kanu and Sunday Adeyemo, and the ongoing investigations being conducted have revealed certain high-profile financiers behind these individuals. We are vigorously pursuing these financiers including one identified as a serving member of the national assembly.

Fellow Nigerians,

34. This is a clear example of how people abandon their national leadership positions for their selfish gains. Instead of preaching unity, they are funding and misleading our youth to conduct criminal acts that sometimes lead to unfortunate and unnecessary loss of lives and property.

35. As the so-called leaders run abroad to hide, our innocent youths are misled and left in the streets to fight for their senseless and destructive causes.

36. Government will continue, with greater level of peoples’ participation and in collaboration with our international partners, to improve the security architecture, reduce enabling environment for criminality to thrive and eliminate opportunities for terrorism financing.

37. Fellow Nigerians, our unrelenting effort at resolving an almost two-decade stalling on the management of our Petroleum resources and ensuring equitable consideration to our host communities has resulted in the enactment of the Petroleum Industry Act, 2021.

38. This Act not only overhauls the Institutional, regulatory and fiscal framework of the Petroleum Industry but also reduces the previous opacity associated with this sector.

39. This is the first step to the reforms as the process is a continuous one. Already, to further improve the governance framework, I have sought for an amendment of sections 11(2)(b) and 34(2)(b). We will also continue to review and amend as appropriate.

40. At this juncture, it is very appropriate that I salute the leadership and members of the Ninth Assembly for their patriotism, dedication to duty, candour and most importantly the dispatch with which they have enacted legacy legislations for this nation. I do not take such level of cooperation for granted and hope it continues for the overall efficiency of the Federal machinery.

41. Nigeria’s Roadmap on Local Refining is on track with the Commissioning of a Modular refinery in Imo State.

42. A second is scheduled for commissioning by the end of this year in Edo State and the third one in Bayelsa State by 2022.

43. In addition to the modular projects, we also have the two mega refinery projects coming up in Lagos and Akwa Ibom States.

44. As these refineries are commissioned, more employment opportunities are created and there would be increased petroleum products available for local consumption which will significantly reduce our reliance on importation.

45. In further demonstrating our plan to reduce our dependence on oil and tapping from our enormous gas resources, this administration remains committed to the “Decade of Gas” Initiative, which is aimed at bringing to focus the utilization of our huge gas resources.

46. Already, we are supporting and promoting various gas-based projects including NLNG Train 7 and the mega urea and ammonia projects in the South-South region.

47. As we continue to optimise and enhance our oil and gas sector, I am also proud and delighted to state that our economic diversification strategy remains on course with the persistent increase in Non-Oil Sector contribution to GDP.

48. We recovered from economic recession in quarter four of 2020 with a GDP growth rate of 0.11%, and grew by 0.51% and 5.01% in real terms in the first and second quarters of 2021.

49. The Agricultural sector remains key to our economic diversification efforts as the sector has been a consistent driver of the non-oil sector contributing 22.35% and 23.78% to the overall GDP in the first and second quarter of 2021.

50. We have seen significant private sector investments in almost all areas of the agricultural value chain. And these have continued even during the COVID-19 pandemic.

51. Unfortunately, as our food production capacity has increased, food prices have been going up due to artificial shortages created by middlemen who have been buying and hoarding these essential commodities for profiteering.

52. To address this, I am hereby directing the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to rehabilitate the National Food Reserve Agency and also work with security agencies, the Nigerian Commodity Exchange, and the National Assembly to find a lasting solution to these disruptive and unpatriotic hoarding activities.

53. To further enhance food production, we have completed several new dams and are in the process of rehabilitating several River Basin Development Authorities to enhance groundwater supply for rainfed agriculture as well as surface water for irrigation agriculture.

54. The water projects we completed between 2015 to 2020 have improved Nigerian’s access to potable water to 71%, between 2015 and 2020. This means 12.5 million additional Nigerians now have direct access to potable water.

Fellow Nigerians,

55. This Government remains concerned by the significant transportation infrastructure deficit we have. Addressing the challenges our commuters and lorry drivers face on the motorways is still a high priority to us.

56. To complement our budgetary allocations, the Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund and the Road Infrastructure Development and Refurbishment Investment Tax Credit Scheme, we recently established a N15 trillion Infrastructural Corporation of Nigeria Limited (INFRACO), which is expected to begin operation by the fourth quarter of this year.

57. INFRACO will also focus on leveraging resources on a public-private sector basis for infrastructural development in Nigeria.

58. We hope through these innovative programs, the additional cost burden on individuals and businesses because of inefficient logistics operations will be reduced and ultimately, eliminated.

59. We currently have over 13,000 kilometres of roads and bridges under construction all over the country of which a fair percentage have been completed.

60. As we fix our roads, we also continue to extend and upgrade Nigeria’s railway network with the notable opening of the Warri- Itakpe standard gauge rail line.

61. To increase capacity, we have introduced more locomotives, coaches, and wagons including the establishment of a Wagon Assembly in Kajola, Ogun State.

62. The seaports however still remain problematic. The effect of our various interventions to reduce the gridlocks and inefficiencies has been slower than expected.

63. However, the implementation of the Electronic Call-Up System, as well as the conversion of the Lilypond Container Terminal to a Vehicle Transit Area, will further enhance the ease of cargo evacuation.

64. Our prioritisation of developing Nigeria’s Digital Economy has positively impacted the contribution of the ICT sector to our GDP.

65. We hope our present efforts to ensure all Nigerians use a National Identification Number, as well as our planned roll-out of the fifth generation (5G) network technology, will ensure we stay in line with the global innovation curve as a Nation.

66. As we embrace the digital economy in Nigeria, we are fully aware of the prospects and the perils. Our policies have been developed to enable Nigerians to take advantage of the prospects and avoid the perils of digital technologies.

67. Social media is a very useful platform that has enabled millions of Nigerians to connect with loved ones, promote their businesses, socialise, and access news and other information.

68. However, recent events have shown that the platform is not just an innocuous platform for information dissemination.

69. Rather some users have misused the platform to organise, coordinate, and execute criminal activities, propagate fake news, and promote ethnic and religious sentiments.

70. To address these negative trends, the Federal Government of Nigeria suspended the operations of Twitter in Nigeria on June 5, 2021 to allow the Government put measures in place to address these challenges.

71. Following the suspension of Twitter operations, Twitter Inc. reached out to the Federal Government of Nigeria to resolve the impasse. Subsequently, I constituted a Presidential Committee to engage Twitter to explore the possibility of resolving the issue.

72. The Committee, along with its Technical Team, has engaged with Twitter and have addressed a number of key issues. These are:

a. National Security and Cohesion;

b. Registration, Physical presence and Representation;

c. Fair Taxation;

d. Dispute Resolution; and

e. Local Content.

73. Following the extensive engagements, the issues are being addressed and I have directed that the suspension be lifted but only if the conditions are met to allow our citizens continue the use of the platform for business and positive engagements.

74. As a country, we are committed to ensuring that digital companies use their platform to enhance the lives of our citizens, respect Nigeria’s sovereignty, cultural values and promote online safety.

75. Nigeria’s progressive diplomacy continues to manifest through growing numbers of highly placed Nigerians in positions of regional and global influences. Very recently, Nigeria won election for the position of Commissioner for the expanded Political, Peace and Security Affairs of the African Union.

76. Our persistent calls for a reorganized and reformed ECOWAS, to make the organization citizens-sensitive, paid off with the acceptance by the Authority of Heads of State and Governments of ECOWAS to commence the agreed reforms in the organization ahead of the next elections of the organization’s principal officers in December this year.

77. At the African Development Bank, World Trade Organization and indeed, the United Nations, footprints of Nigeria’s Diplomacy are clearly evident.

78. We remain confident that our goal of lifting 100million Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years is achievable.

79. Considering the positive impact of our Social Investment Programs, I recently approved an increase in the number of N-Power program beneficiaries from 500,000 to 1,000,000.

80. Out of this, 510,000 have started the programme while the competitive selection process for onboarding the outstanding 490,000 beneficiaries is in progress.

81. The National Home-Grown School Feeding Programme is currently being implemented in 35 States of the Federation and the FCT. Over 103,000 women have been engaged and empowered as cooks under the programme, while about 10 million pupils are being fed across public primary schools in the country.

82. To grant increased access to credit to the poorest and vulnerable, I have directed an increase in the disbursement of Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme loans to an additional one million beneficiaries laying more emphasis on the smallholding farmers through the farmers Moni program.

Fellow Nigerians,

83. For far too long we have neglected the centrality of the civil service as the engine of governance and this has manifested in ineffective service delivery.

84. There is widespread discontent and disillusion about the efficiency and probity of our civil service.

85. It is for this reason that we are refocusing the Nigerian Civil Service to provide World-class service to run our country.

86. The youths of this great country remain propellants for our today and provide guarantees that we would have a secure tomorrow.

87. It is for this reason that I remain focused on expanding opportunities for their participation in politics and governance.

88. Recent appointments of young people into positions of authority and their track record so far, give me confidence that we need to bring more of them into governance and this I promise to do.

89. More specifically, to encourage Girl-Child Education, female scholarship schemes, life skills, and digital literacy skills to boost girl’s enrolment, retention, and completion of schooling, are all initiatives put in place to ensure gender balance in appropriately positioning our youths for positions of leadership.

90. The commitment of this Administration to the well-being of people living with disabilities remains unwavering.

91. Government recognises their contributions to development and I have, in this regard, directed that all relevant Government Agencies pay special attention to the peculiarities of different abilities in the implementation of policies and programmes.

92. Rape and Gender-Based Violence remains a sore point in our Nation as in many countries worldwide and this was worsened during and after the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

93. We are currently engaging Heads of Courts to establish Specialised Courts for the speedy and seamless trial of Rape/Gender-Based offences especially to ensure that justice is done for child victims of sexual violence.

94. On the other hand, work has advanced in the reformation, reintegration, and reunification of minors involved in one crime or the other.

95. The reformation in our Correctional Services has manifested in an increase in modernised custodial centres and a transformation from strictly punitive to attitudinal changes so that criminals do not relapse into their previous lifestyle.

96. As we begin to celebrate our sixty-one years as a Nation, we need to be conscious that Nigeria does not start and end with the Federal Government. This country is a great collective where Government at all arms and levels as well as the private sector, and more importantly individuals, have a role to play.

97. In particular, security is a bottom-to-top undertaking. Joining hands and hearts together would enable us to secure ourselves and our country.

98. I fully understand the anxiety of many Nigerians on the inability of this country to go beyond a never-ending potential for becoming a great nation to an actually great one.

99. A lot has been achieved in the last six years on many fronts: in infrastructure, social care, governance, Nigeria’s image, and influence in Africa and the international community.

100. But critics misdiagnose incremental progress as stagnation. Since coming to power, this Administration has tackled our problems head-on in spite of the meagre resources. No government since 1999 has done what we have done in six years to put Nigeria back on track.

101. We shall continue to serve the country: listen to all and protect our democracy and country.

Thank you all and God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Sunday Igboho: We Are Doing The Needful To Ensure Justice – FG

 

The Federal Government says it is making efforts to get justice in the case involving Yoruba nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho.

Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, stated this on Wednesday in reaction to the judgement of an Oyo State High Court that awarded damages in Igboho’s favour.

“We are doing the needful in terms of looking at the law as it exists, and then working within the context of the law in ensuring that justice is done as far as the contending issues between the parties are concerned,” he told reporters on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, United States.

READ ALSO: We Have Identified Terrorism Financiers In Nigeria – Malami

A file photo of Mr Sunday Adeyemo.

 

Last Friday, Channels Television reported that the court presided by Justice Ladiran Akintola ordered the Federal Government to pay the sum of N20 billion in damages to Igboho.

This followed the suit file by Igboho’s lawyer, Yomi Alliyu, to challenge the legality of the invasion of his client’s house in Ibadan, and the damage done to his property.

He argued that the action of the security outfit was a violation of Igboho’s fundamental right to peacefully own property and wealth.

 

A Fresh Charge

The AGF and DSS were respondents to the suit in which Alliyu, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, sought N500 billion in favour of his client.

A photo of security patrol vehicles at the entrance of the Oyo State High Court in Ibadan.

 

In his reaction, the minister questioned the jurisdiction of the court and hinted that the government would not rule out filing fresh charges against Igboho.

“As far as the Federal Government is concerned, it is about law. It is about jurisdiction; as far as this matter is concerned, which court is it that has the jurisdiction to determine it?” he queried.

“But then, you have to understand within the context of such obedience that there are associated rights and interests that are vested in the Federal Government – inclusive of rights of appealing against a judgement, inclusive of the right to file an application for setting aside the purported judgement and order.

“And indeed, inclusive of the possibility of filing a fresh action, if indeed the jurisdiction of the court that was alleged to have indeed handed that judgement is an issue.”

Igboho’s Aides Sue DSS, Seek N100m As Compensation

A file photo of DSS officials.
A file photo of DSS officials.

 

The 12 associates of Yoruba nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho, have instituted a rights enforcement suit against the Department of State Services (DSS) for parading them before the media as criminals.

They filed the suit on Wednesday before Justice Obiora Egwuatu of the Federal High Court who presided as a vacation judge while the court is on recess.

In the suit, Igboho’s associates sought a declaration of the court that their detention beyond 48 hours and their media parade without a court conviction, constituted a breach of their fundamental rights.

They also sought an order of perpetual injunction restraining the DSS from interfering with their personal liberty and freedom of expression.

Similarly, the applicants prayed for an order granting the sum of N100 million for aggravated and exemplary damages against the security outfit, for what they termed a serial breach of their constitutional rights.

But the DSS lawyer, Idowu Awo, told Justice Egwuatu during the proceedings that his case file was stolen from a member of the legal team who was meant to bring it to the court.

A photo taken on August 30, 2021, shows the eight aides of Sunday Igboho released by the DSS.

 

According to him, his colleague in question boarded a vehicle on Tuesday belonging to criminal elements, known as ‘one chance’, to whom she lost her personal belongings and the case file.

With the annual recess of the court ending soon, Justice Egwuatu ruled that the file of the fundamental rights suit be returned to the registry for reassignment to the regular court.

On July 1, Channels Television had reported that there was tension in the Soka area of Ibadan as a result of the early-morning firefight at Igboho’s house.

Hours after the incident, the DSS issued a statement in which it said it was a raid by a joint team of security operatives.

It alleged that Igboho and others had plotted to wage a violent insurrection against the Nigerian State, calling on the Yoruba Nation agitator to turn himself in, at the nearest security agency.

Igboho’s associates were later paraded and detained until eight of them were released by the DSS on August 30, after about two months in detention.

The security agency had, however, kept four others in custody, although the court granted bail to all 12 persons.

Last Friday, the DSS released two more aides of Igboho, bringing the total number of those that have left its custody to 10.

DSS Files Terrorism Charges Against Two Of Igboho’s Aides

A file photo of DSS officials.
A file photo of DSS officials.

 

The Department of State Services (DSS) has filed five counts of terrorism against two of the aides of Yoruba Nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho.

Those facing the charges filed at the Federal High Court in Abuja are two of the four aides of Igboho held back in the custody of the security agency.

In the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CR/305/2021, which was dated August 31, 2021, the DSS through its lawyer, S.M. Bello, filed five terrorism charges against Noah Oyetunji and Amudat Babatunde (female).

The charges come after over two months of being detained by the DSS, despite the order of a court directing their release on bail.

According to documents obtained by Channels Television on Wednesday, Oyetunji is alleged to have been in possession of firearms which the DSS claims was used for terrorism.

Babatunde, on the other hand, was charged for promoting acts of terror via social media.

As of the time of filing this report, the court had yet to fix a date for the hearing.

The DSS filed the suit days before Igboho’s aides also filed a rights enforcement suit against the security outfit.

 

Demand For N100m

Igboho’s aides filed the suit on Wednesday before Justice Obiora Egwuatu of the Federal High Court who presided as a vacation judge while the court is on recess.

They sought a declaration of the court that their detention beyond 48 hours and their media parade without a court conviction constituted a breach of their fundamental rights.

They also sought an order of perpetual injunction restraining the DSS from interfering with their personal liberty and freedom of expression.

Similarly, the applicants prayed for an order granting the sum of N100 million for aggravated and exemplary damages against the security outfit, for what they termed a serial breach of their constitutional rights.

DSS Releases Two More Igboho’s Aides – Lawyer

Sunday Igboho’s Aides

 

The Department of State Services (DSS) has released two more aides of Yoruba Nation agitator Sunday Adeyemo.

Their lawyer, Pelumi Olajengbesi confirmed their release on Friday via a statement obtained by Channels Television.

This comes after the DSS had released eight of Igboho’s aides on Monday.

He however noted that two other aides – Amudat Habibat Babatunde and Jamiu Noah Oyetunji – remain in the unlawful custody of the DSS.

Olajengbesi vowed to file a contempt of court against the secret service.

“Sequel to the refusal of the DSS to release the other detainees, concerted efforts were immediately made to resolve all technical issues raised by the DSS. Accordingly, on Friday the 3rd of September, 2021, all issues raised were resolved and we proceeded to the Headquarters of the DSS to demand the immediate release of the four (4) remaining detainees in their custody,” the statement read.

“Regrettably and in the whimsical habit of the DSS, only two of the remaining four received their freedom while the other two namely; Amudat Habibat Babatunde and Jamiu Noah Oyetunji, remain in the unlawful custody of the DSS. No valid reasons on law were availed the Legal Team for this willful disobedience of the rule of law and court.”

READ ALSO: Teenager Arrested For Tampering UTME Result

On August 4, Justice Obiora Egwuatu of the Federal High Court sitting granted bail to the 12 detainees but the DSS only released eight on August 31.

The detainees had met their bail conditions including the provision of 24 sureties, though the DSS lawyer, Idowu Awo, had kicked against the bail granted by Justice Egwuatu to four of them, claiming that they were heavily involved in the alleged offence of arms stockpiling and other criminal activities of their boss, Igboho.

But Olajengbesi warned that should the DSS refuse to release the remaining two aides, he would file contempt of court charges against its Director-General, Yusuf Magaji Bichi.

He noted that DSS is a law enforcement agency and should not be allowed to carry out its official responsibility with impunity and absolute disrespect to the law of the land, especially where the constitutional rights and liberty of citizens are at stake.

 

See the full statement here:

‘DSS’ RELEASES TWO MORE IGBOHO’S Aides – Tajudeen Irinloye and Uthman Opeymi Adelabu

“DSS’ SELECTIVE OBEDIENCE TO COURT ORDER; AN AFFRONT TO AND DISREGARD OF THE AUTHORITY OF THE COURT”

By. Pelumi Olajengbesi Esq.

The keenly observing world will recall that during our last press briefing on the on-going case of Chief Sunday Igboho’s aides, it was reported that the DSS is yet to release four (4) of detainees on their custody on grounds of bail perfection technicality, in which we were allowed to secure the release of others.

Sequel to the refusal of the DSS to release the other detainees, concerted efforts were immediately made to resolve all technical issues raised by the DSS. Accordingly, on Friday the 3rd of September, 2021, all issues raised were resolved and we proceeded to the Headquarters of the DSS to demand the immediate release of the four (4) remaining detainees in their custody.

Regrettably and in the whimsical habit of the DSS, only two of the remaining four received their freedom while the other two namely; Amudat Habibat Babatunde and Jamiu Noah Oyetunji, remain in the unlawful custody of the DSS. No valid reasons on law were availed the Legal Team for this willful disobedience of the rule of law and court.

The DSS’ cherry-picking of an order of the court is an open dare and affront on the authority of the issuing court and it lacks legal backing under the extant laws of Nigeria. It is a condemnable action in any sane democratic society and speaks ill of the professionalism of the intelligence agency. The DSS simply have no right nor power to select or unilaterally handpick which order of the court is convenient for it to obey or honor. Any iota of non-compliance to an order of the court is tantamount to disregard of such an order in its entirety and the same is contemptuous.

Consequently, we want to restate that if by Monday the 6th of September, 2021, the DSS continue with their unlawful detention of the remaining two (2) detainees, we shall not hesitate to proceed with our earlier plans to institute a contempt proceeding against the Director-General of the SSS, Yusuf Magaji Bichi.

The DSS as a law enforcement agency should not be allowed to carry out its official responsibility with impunity and absolute disrespect to the law of the land, especially where the constitutional rights and liberty of citizens are at stake. It is reprehensible conduct unbecoming of an agency that is itself a creation of the law and it will not go unchallenged.

Thank you.

Pelumi Olajengbesi Esq.

Principal Partner

Law Corridor

 

DSS Releases Eight Igboho’s Aides, Four Still In Custody

A photo taken on August 30, 2021, shows the eight aides of Sunday Igboho released by the DSS.

 

The Department of State Services (DSS) has released eight of the 12 aides of Yoruba Nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho, in its custody.

Lawyer to the detainees, Pelumi Olajengbesi, confirmed their release on Monday at a press conference in Abuja.

The detained persons have been in the custody of the security agency 61 days after they were arrested by security operatives in early July.

Those released on August 30 are Abdullateef Onaolapo, Tajudeen Irinloye, Diekola Ademola, Ayobami Donald, Uthman Adelabu, Olakunle Oluwapelumi, Raji Kazeem, and Taiwo Tajudeen.

READ ALSO: DSS Confirms Raid On Igboho’s House, Parades 13 Suspected Armed Yoruba Nation Agitators

The DSS, however, refused to release the remaining four persons, contrary to an order of the court that granted bail to the entire 12 aides of the Yoruba Nation agitator in the custody of the agency.

Those held back by the security agency include Amudat Babatunde, Abideen Shittu, Jamiu Oyetunji, and Bamidele Sunday.

While briefing reporters on the development, Olajengbesi insisted that all his clients must be released in accordance with the order of the court, having fulfilled all the requirements for their bail.

He also asked the DSS to give account for the two associates of Sunday Igboho who were killed on July 1 during the raid of the Yoruba Nation agitator’s house in Ibadan, Oyo State.

An Early-Morning Raid

A file photo of DSS officials at the Federal High Court in Abuja.

 

Channels Television had reported that there was tension in the Soka area of Ibadan on July 1 as a result of the early-morning firefight at Igboho’s house.

Hours after the incident, the DSS issued a statement in which it said it was a raid by a joint team of security operatives.

It alleged that Igboho and others had plotted to wage a violent insurrection against the Nigerian State, calling on the Yoruba Nation agitator to turn himself in to the nearest security agency.

The DSS had also confirmed the arrest of 13 persons, but 12 of them were paraded at its office in Abuja.

Thereafter, the paraded suspects filed an application through their lawyer, Olajengbesi, in which they asked the Federal High Court in Abuja to inquire into the circumstances that led to their arrest and detention.

Olajengbesi had also prayed the court to admit his clients to bail, a request that was granted by Justice Obiora Egwuatu on August 4.

Last Tuesday, the court struck out a suit filed by the DSS seeking to further detain four of the 12 aides of Igboho, following the dramatic withdrawal by counsel to the security agency, Mr Idowu Awo.

Despite the withdrawal, the DSS has only released eight of the 12 detained persons.

Court Strikes Out DSS Suit Seeking Further Detention Of Four Igboho’s Aides

A file photo of some of Sunday Igboho’s aides arrested by the DSS.

 

A Federal High Court in Abuja has struck out a suit filed by the Department of State Services (DSS) seeking to further detain four of the 12 aides of Yoruba nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, who is also known as Sunday Igboho.

The motion was thrown out by Justice Obiora Egwuatu on Tuesday following the dramatic withdrawal by counsel to the security agency, Mr Idowu Awo.

At the resumption of the case, the DSS lawyer stunned the court just as the motion was about to be heard, announcing his decision not to go ahead with the matter.

Rather, he informed the court that he had filed a notice of appeal against the bail granted to four out of the 12 detainees.

Awo stated that he would prefer to pursue the appeal at the Court of Appeal.

Thereafter, Justice Egwuatu struck out the motion following the no objection by the detainees’ lawyer, Mr Sunday Adebayo.

In early August, an Oyo State High Court granted an ex-parte motion prohibiting the DSS and Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, from arresting Sunday Igboho.

The court also went further to restrain the DSS and Malami from freezing Igboho’s financial assets, as well as restrict any form of intimidation and harassment by the duo.

The DSS paraded Sunday Ighoho’s aides on July 1 after a raid on his home in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.

During the operation, the security operatives arrested 12 of them and moved them to Abuja where they were detained.

The detainees were accused of stockpiling arms to cause chaos in the country.

Thereafter, the suspects filed an application through their lawyer, Mr Pelumi Olajengbesi, in which they prayed the court to inquire into the circumstances that led to their arrest and detention since July 2.

Olajengbesi had also prayed the court to admit his clients to bail, a request that was granted by Justice Egwuatu on August 4.

Court Grants Igboho’s Aides Bail

Sunday Igboho’s aides

 

A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has granted bail to the 12 aides of Sunday Adeyemo popularly known as Sunday Igboho.

Delivering the ruling on the application filed by the 12 applicants before the court, the presiding Judge, Justice Obiora Egwuatu, said it is clear that no charge has been brought against Sunday Igboho’s aides since their arrest.

As such, the court held that detaining them without charging them contravenes the provisions of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act and their fundamental rights.

Eight of the applicants, the 1st, 3rd, 4th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, and 11th applicants, were granted bail in the sum of N5million each with surety in like sum resident in Abuja.

The remaining four applicants, the 2nd, 5th, 6th, and 12th applicants, were granted bail in the sum of N10 million each with two sureties in like sum also resident in Abuja.

Some of Sunday Ighoho’s aides in the courtroom during hearing of their bail application on Wednesday, August 4, 2021.

Among the conditions for admitting the four applicants to bail is that one of the two sureties must be a Federal Government employee not below grade level 12.

The two sureties must also present evidence of three years’ tax payment and the document of their property must be verified by the DSS and the court.

The 12 applicants are however to remain the custody of the DSS until they are able to perfect all conditions for their bail.

Although counsel to the applicants, Pelumi Olajengbesi had prayed the court to grant an order for them to be moved to a Police facility, experiencing fear of a possible manhandling by the DSS, Justice Egwuatu refused to grant the prayer as he said he had not seen any reason to grant it.

 

The Arrest

The aides were arrested when DSS officials raided Igboho’s home on July 1, but a lawyer to the apprehended aides, Pelumi Olajengbesi, has sued on grounds that their fundamental human rights were being infringed on.

The DSS earlier on Monday, August 2 presented eight instead of the 12 arrested aides.

The court then ordered the security agency to produce all the 12 aides.

In obedience to the court order, the DSS on Wednesday produced all 12 detained aides before the Federal High Court in Abuja.

 

The Igboho raid

The DSS had paraded the aides on July 1 and accused them, along with Igboho, of stockpiling arms to cause chaos in the country.

Mr Igboho rose to fame after issuing a quit notice to herders in the south-west over increasing violence.

He has also advocated for the creation of a Yoruba Nation out of Nigeria.

After the DSS raid on his home, Mr Igboho fled to Benin Republic and is presently in court fighting extradition back to Nigeria.