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Northern Elders Dissociate Themselves From Gumi On Banditry

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Be Tolerant Of Others - Northern Governors Tell Northerners

 

Northern elders have dissociated themselves from Islamic cleric Sheikh Abubakar Gumi.
The elders under the aegis of the North East Elders for Peace and Development have warned Gumi against justifying armed banditry and other associated criminalities in the north.
They expressed fear that recent comments and attitude of the cleric could embolden the bandits.

The elders accused the fiery Islamic cleric of making wild and unsubstantiated claims.
The Kaduna-based Islamic cleric, who has been meeting with bandits in forests across Kaduna, Zamfara, Katsina and Niger states, alleged in one of such outings that non-Muslim soldiers had carried out orchestrated killings in some communities, precipitating anger.

The cleric had made a similar claim on a national television programme on Tuesday morning, maintaining the military had allegedly carried out the said campaign between 2010 and 2015.

But reacting to the allegation, the northern elders insisted that Gumi’s allegations were not a representation of the position of the region, saying the public must see them as his personal sentiments.

Urging the general public to discountenance the allegations, the group vouched for the professionalism and non-partisan nature of the Armed Forces of Nigeria.

In a statement by the National Coordinator of the group, Zana Goni, the elders vowed to resist attempts by any individual or group to profile the military, which they maintained, remained the most visible symbol of national unity and cohesion.

According to them, the need for prominent groups and organisations in the north to condemn Gumi’s dangerous claims has become imperative, “in order not to give the impression that he was speaking for the region”.

READ ALSO: Buhari, Nigeria Falling Apart On Your Watch – Catholic Bishops

They argued further by his statement, Gumi may be justifying armed banditry and all that are associated with the crime, a development, they feared, could embolden the perpetrators.

The elders wondered why an Islamic cleric and scholar, who had taken the initiative to discuss with bandits, wolud end up taking sides, as his statements suggested.

They said: “Ordinarily, we would have commended the Sheikh for daring to do what authorities failed but for the profiling comments attributed to him, which we consider abhorrent and unhelpful to national development and peace.

“We insist that our military is one of the finest in the world, with zero-tolerance for partisanship, ethnic consideration and other unprofessional dispositions.

“We warn that comments such as this have the potential of pitting the exposed soldiers against general areas in the north, where they have continued to put down their lives to protect the territorial integrity of the nation from those that seek to violate it.

“Our concern is further hinged on the possibility of the world concluding that the north may be offering tacit endorsement to banditry and associated crimes against society”.

They added: “In whatever position we find ourselves, we must, at all material times, endeavour to put the collective interest of Nigeria over and above all other considerations, bearing in mind the fact that when the country collapses, it will do so on all of us, regardless of religion, ethnicity, or belief.

“Lastly, we urge Gumi to stop approbating and reprobating at the same time, and to immediately call off his mission, if he has developed lethargy in the course of undertaking visits to deep forests”.

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Court Jails APC Senator Seven Years For Fraud

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Court Jails APC Senator Seven Years For Fraud

The Senator representing Delta North Senatorial District at the National Assembly, Peter Nwaoboshi of the All Progressives Congress (APC) , has been sentenced to seven years’ imprisonment.

The Court of Appeal in Lagos on Friday also ordered that the senator’s two companies, Golden Touch Construction Project Ltd and Suiming Electrical Ltd, be wound up in line with the provisions of Section 22 of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2021.

The court’s ruling was delivered in an appeal challenging the judgment of Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke of the Federal High Court which on June 18, 2021, discharged and acquitted the defendants on two counts of fraud and money laundering. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) which arraigned him however challenged the lower court’s decision.

EFCC had arraigned the three defendants over the acquisition of a property named Guinea House, Marine Road, in Apapa, Lagos, for N805 million.

 READ ALSO: Why Move To Impeach Senate President Will Fail – Nwaboshi

Part of the money paid to the vendor – N322 million transferred by Suiming Electrical Ltd on behalf of Nwaoboshi and Golden Touch Construction Project Ltd – was alleged to be part of proceeds of fraud.

Earlier in his judgment, Justice Aneke said the evidence of the prosecutor “proved that the third defendant obtained a loan of N1.2 billion from Zenith Bank to purchase additional equipment and as provision of working capital”.

“It also proved that the loan of N1.2 billion together with interest of N24 million was properly granted to the third defendant .Nothing else was proved by the complainant or prosecutor in this case,” the EFCC quoted the judge as saying in a statement.

The high court judge was also quoted as claiming that a fatal blow was dealt to the case of the prosecution by its failure to call officials of Sterling Bank “to testify and probably tender exhibits F and F10. Consequently, he discharged and acquitted the defendants”.

However, ruling on the EFCC’s appeal on Friday, the Court of Appeal held that the trial judge erred in dismissing the charges against the respondents.

“The court said the prosecution had proved the ingredients of the offence and consequently found the defendants guilty as charged,” EFCC said.

 

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Drama In Court As Lawyer Appears In Priestly Attire

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VIDEO: Drama As Lawyer In Priestly Attire Appears In Court

By John Michael Ojo
There was a mild drama today at the Okpoko Magistrate Court in the Ogbaru Local Government Area of Anambra State, as a lawyer simply identified as Ogbachalu Goshen appeared before the court in a pastoral robe.

But Ogbachalu who was standing before the magistrate, CB Mbaegbu, was denied  hearing on the ground that he was not properly attired, leading to a minor incident in the court.

READ ALSO: Female Students Can Wear Hijab To Lagos Schools – Supreme Court

However,  citing a recent Supreme Court’s judgment which supported the wearing of hijab by female students in public schools as a reference point, Ogbachalu reminded the court that it was his right to dress in his priestly attire as he was an ordained pastor and that the objection by the court to hear him, was an infringement on his fundamental human right as enshrined in section 38 of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria

The magistrate however disagreed his submission which only forced the court to dismiss.

 

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Court Orders Immigration, Banks To Release David Ukpo’s Details To Ekweremadu

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Court Orders Immigration, Banks To Release David Ukpo's Details To Ekweremadu

To enable detained former Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu to effectively defend himself in London, a Federal High Court in Abuja on Friday ordered the Nigerian Immigration Service and three banks to immediately release details of David Ukpo to him.

Justice Inyang Ekwo issued the order while delivering judgment in a suit instituted by Ekweremadu and his wife, Beatrice.

The judgment against the defendants followed their non-appearance in court to defend the suit.

By the court order, all official information including the account opening package in relation to Ukpo are to be released to Senator Ekweremadu to ascertain the real age of the said Ukpo.

READ ALSO: Real Age Of Ekweremadu’s Kidney Donor – Immigration

Ukpo had claimed at a London court that he was a minor of 15 years old which led to the arrest and detention of the Nigerian Senator.

Other defendants are the Comptroller General (C-G), Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS); Stanbic-IBTC Bank, United Bank of Africa (UBA), and Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System Plc as 2nd to 5th respondents, respectively.

 

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