Wike Orders Prosecution Of Amaechi, Cole Over Alleged Sale Of Assets
Rivers Governor Nyesom Wike on Friday ordered his Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Prof. Zaccheaus Adangor to begin an immediate prosecution of his predecessor and former Transport Minister, Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, over alleged fraudulent sale of state assets and diversion of $50m.
The governor named those to be included in the prosecution as Rivers All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate, Tonye Cole and his company Sahara Energy.
The governor said there was a need for Rivers people and the rest of the world to know what actually happened to the $50 million that disappeared from the state’s account without a proof of business where it was deployed.
Wike said: “Attorney General, you’re at a critical period where people want to know what the State is going to do with the Judiciary Panel of Inquiry after the Supreme Court judgement on it.
READ ALSO: How Amaechi, Secondus Fought Against My Political Ambitions – Wike
“Luckily, you came at the right time when we have preferred criminal charges against the former governor (Amaechi), Sahara Energy, Tonye Cole and the rest of them.
“So, you are coming at the right time to take over the matter and to make sure it is prosecuted diligently. I don’t want to hear excuses. Let the people see what happened to our money.
“The world will see how $50 million from our account was moved to a company without nothing to show whether there was a business.”
Wike further directed Adangor to send a protest letter to the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) following the harassment of Rivers Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate, Siminalaye Fubara.
Wike gave the directives on Friday at the Executive Chamber of Government House, Port Harcourt, during the inauguration of three new commissioners.
Those sworn in by the Governor and their portfolios are Prof. Adangor, Isaac Kamalu, Commissioner of Finance, Budget and Economic Planning and Dr. George-Kelly, Dakorinama Alabo, Commissioner for Works and Special Projects.
The governor recalled that the EFCC and its officers attempted to harass and intimidate Fubara, who before his emergence as the PDP governorship candidate, had served as the Accountant-General of Rivers State.
Wike said EFCC should know that the era of impunity and flagrant disobedience to the rule of law was gone and that his administration would not accept such behaviour.
READ ALSO: Nigeria At 60 Full Of Hatred, Division, Governance Failure – Wike
He threatened that the State Government would charge the EFCC for contempt if it failed to retrace its steps.
Wike explained that hitherto, the Rivers State government had secured a subsisting court judgment against the EFCC stopping the commission from investigating the state finances or its officers.
He said there was also another subsisting judgment against EFCC by the PDP governorship candidate on the enforcement of his fundamental rights.
He said: “Rivers State government had judgment against EFCC since 2007. The court said you (EFCC) have no business in the financial transactions of the (Rivers) State. EFCC has been struggling to set aside that judgement until now. They have not even appealed it.”
Wike noted that nobody would accept the use of EFCC at such political period to intimidate persons in order to achieve their skewed goals.
He said: “We are in a political period. People should not think that they will use EFCC to intimidate or manipulate him (Fubara). Nobody will accept that. So you (Attorney General) have to attach the judgment of the candidate against EFCC and send the right signal to them that we are not people that can be cowed.”
The governor commended the newly sworn in commissioners for showing capacity, loyalty and commitment in previous assignments without excuses.
Wike said that he would be careful in constituting his cabinet to full capacity because at such twilight of his administration, only people with undivided loyalty were needed to ensure good ending.
“I want to commend three you that you have shown commitment, you have shown hard work, you have shown loyalty. And for me, that is the only way to pay back the people who have shown in spite of all odds, they are still there with you”, he said.
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Arrest Interim Govt Plotters Now – Governors
Governors of the 36 states have asked the Department of State Services (DSS) to arrest and prosecute those involved in a plot to put in place an interim government as part of moves to truncate the nation’s democracy.
Condemning the move, the governors under the auspices of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum assured of their commitment to continue in the defence of Nigeria’s democracy as elected leaders.
In a statement on Friday by NGF Chairman and Governor of Sokoto State, Aminu Tambuwal at the end of the 4th meeting of the Governors, he warned the DSS against issuing statements without arrest as that amounts to heating the polity.
Tambuwal said, “The Forum deliberated extensively on the alleged plot by some unscrupulous elements to install an interim government, as contained in the recent statement issued by the Department for State Services (DSS). Governors condemned in the strongest terms, any unconstitutional means of regime change and pledged its commitment to continue to defend Nigeria’s democracy as elected leaders.
“In addition, the Forum believes that issuing statements without arrests is akin to heating up the polity and causing unwarranted tension in the country. It called on the DSS to do its job by immediately arresting and prosecuting all those involved in the plot as a matter of urgency.”
Recall that the DSS had on Wednesday confirmed rumours that a section of the political class was planning for an interim government in order to truncate the result of the recently-concluded general elections.
The Spokesman for the DSS, Dr. Peter Afunanya in a statement said that the agency had identified some key players in the plot for an Interim Government in Nigeria but did not give the names of the masterminds.
The agency had said that the planners of the interim government had already held several meetings, during which they weighed many options to actualize their plot including sponsoring endless mass protests across Nigerian cities, securing a warrant to declare a state of emergency or a court injunction to stop the inauguration of the executive and the legislature at the federal and state levels.
BREAKING:Lagos Govt Arraigns Chrisland School, Principal, Others Over Death Of Pupil Whitney Adeniran
The Lagos State government has arraigned Chrisland School, Opebi, its principal, vice principal and two other employees over the death of one of the school’s pupils, 12-year-old Whitney Adeniran.
On Wednesday, the government of Lagos State had filed charges against Chrisland School and four others over the death of the 12-year-old pupil, Whitney Adeniran.
The school and its workers were accused of involuntary manslaughter and reckless and negligent acts.
The workers who were arraigned before Justice Oyindamola Ogala of the Lagos State High Court in Ikeja include Ademoye Adewale, Kuku Fatai, Mrs Belinda Amao, Nwatu Ugochi Victoria and Chrisland School Limited.
The school principal, Mrs Belinda Amao, broke down in tears while in the dock as the court and counsel tried to agree on a date for the commencement of the trial.
Whitney died during the school’s inter-house sports competition at Agege Stadium in Lagos on February 9.
Blessing Adeniran, her mother, had accused Chrisland of negligence over her daughter’s death.
The school’s management, however, dismissed insinuations that there was foul play in the death, saying she slumped in public.
Chrisland also argued that Whitney complained about “not-too-buoyant health” a few days before she died.
However, an autopsy conducted at the Lagos State University Hospital (LASUTH) confirmed that the deceased died from “asphyxia and electrocution”.
In the charges filed on behalf of the state government by the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Babajide Martins, who disclosed that their negligence killed Whitney because they failed to ensure her safety.
The charge also disclosed that they all acted in a reckless and negligent manner that endangered human life.
The offences are contrary to Sections 224 & 251 of the Criminal Law, C17, Vol.3, Laws of Lagos State, 2015
If found guilty, the offences carry a penalty of life imprisonment and two-year jail terms respectively.
On Tuesday, the state government granted access to Chrisland High School, Opebi branch, to open for physical learning ahead of the school’s forthcoming examination after parents’ appeal.
The state governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu had ordered that the school be shut down on March 3, 2023, following the investigation into Whitney’s death.
Sanwo-Olu through the state Ministry of Education said the closure of the school would pave the way for unhindered investigation and afford all stakeholders, including parents, students, staff and friends of the deceased, time to grieve.
The reopening followed an appeal by the Parents of all Chrisland School Units who visited the Ministry of Education on Monday to seek the government’s understanding for “the sake of 500 plus students some of whom also have terminal examinations.”
The management of the school had tendered an apology over Whitney’s death.
BREAKING: Abacha’s Ex-chief Of Staff Oladipo Diya Dies
Retired Lt.General Donaldson Oladipo Oyeyinka Diya, the former Chief of Staff in General Sani Abacha’s military government, is dead.
His death was confirmed by Prince Oyesinmilola Diya. He said the former military administrator of Ogun State passed on to glory in the early hours of 26th March 2023.
Born on the 3rd of April, 1944, Diya was military Governor of Ogun State after the Buhari-Idiagbon coup of December 31st, 1983.
Diya joined the Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna and fought during the Nigerian Civil War.
He later attended the US Army School of Infantry, the Command and Staff College, Jaji (1980–1981) and the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru.
While serving in the military, Diya studied law at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, where he obtained an LLB degree, and then at the Nigerian Law School, where he was called to bar as Solicitor and Advocate of the Supreme Court of Nigeria.
He held other top military posts like GOC, 82 Division and finally the Chief of General Staff (military Vice President) to Gen Sani Abacha
The statement read: “On behalf of the entire Diya family home and abroad; we announce the passing on to Glory of our dear Husband,Father, Grandfather,brother, Lt- General Donaldson Oladipo Oyeyinka Diya (Rtd) GCON, LLB, BL, PSC, FSS, mni.
“Our dear Daddy passed onto glory in the early hours of 26th March 2023. Please keep us in your prayers as we mourn his demise in this period. Further announcements will be made public in due course.
“Barrister Prince Oyesinmilola Diya, on behalf of the family.”
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