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    HomeNewsCourt sends EFCC boss, Bawa to prison · We have appealed 

    Court sends EFCC boss, Bawa to prison · We have appealed 

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    By Gabriel Jonah
     
     
    A High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) in Maitama has convicted the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Abdulrasheed Bawa for contempt of court in relation to his agency’s failure to comply with an earlier order of the court.

    Justice Chizoba Oji, in a ruling, held that “the Chairman Economic and Financial Crimes Commission is in contempt of the orders of this honourable court made on November 21st 2018 directing the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Abuja to return to the applicant his Range Rover (Supercharge) and the sum of N40, 000,000.00 (Forty Million Naira).

    “Having continued wilfully in disobedience to the order of this court, he should be committed to prison at Kuje Correctional Centre for his disobedience, and continued disobedience of the said order of court made on November 21st, 2018, until he purges himself of the contempt.

    “The Inspector General of Police shall ensure that the order of this honourable court is executed forthwith,” the judge said.
    Justice Orji rejected the arguments put forward by the lawyer to the EFCC, Francis Jirbo, to justify his client’s action.

    The ruling delivered on October 28, a certified true copy (CTC) of which The Nation sighted in Abuja on Tuesday, was on a motion on notice marked: FCT/HC/M/52/2021 filed by Air Vice Marshal (AVM) Rufus Adeniyi Ojuawo, a one-time Director of Operations at the Nigerian Air Force (NAF).
    Ojuawo had, in the motion filed by his lawyer, R.N. Ojabo, in a suit marked: FCT/HC/CR/184/2016 complained that the EFCC declined to comply with the order, for the release of his seized property, made by the court in a judgment delivered on November 21, 2018.

    The EFCC had arraigned Ojuawo on a two-count charge before Justice Muawiyah Baba Idris of the High Court of the FCT in Nyanya in 2016.

    He was accused of corruptly receiving gratification to the tune of N40million and a Range Rover Sport (Supercharged) valued at N29250million from one Hima Aboubakar of Societe D’Equipment Internationaux Nigeria Limited.
    But, in a judgment on November 21, 2018, Justice Idris discharged and acquitted Ojuawo on the grounds that the prosecution failed to prove its case.
    Idris held that for the charge to succeed, the prosecution must prove that the defendant corruptly accepted the gift; that he accepted or obtained the gift for himself or for any other person.
     
    The judge added that the prosecution also ought to prove that the defendant accepted the gift in the course of, or for discharging his official duty and that the gift was an inducement or reward.

    He held that the burden was on the prosecution to prove all ingredients of the charge preferred against the defendant beyond reasonable doubt as required under Section 131(1) of the Evidence Act, 2011.

    “In conclusion, I hold that the prosecution has failed to prove the two counts charge of corrupt gratification under S17 (1)(a) and (c) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.
    “The defendant is discharged and acquitted on counts one and two of the charge.

    “Consequently, the complainant (EFCC) is ordered to refund the defendant his N40,000,000 wrongly paid into ONSA recovery account and to return to the defendant his Range Rover Sport (Supercharged) forthwith,” Justice Idris said.

    Meanwhile, the Chairman Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFFC, Abdurasheed Bawa, Monday said he has appealed the contempt of court ruling by an FCT court on him.
    Reacting to a question by journalists during the 2023 budget defence with the House of Representatives Committee on Anti-Corruption, Bawa said he has filed an appeal, saying the law should be allowed to take its natural cause.
    “Well, we have appealed against it, so we allow the natural course of law to take its effect”, he said.
    On its budget, Bawa appealed to the committee to increase funding for EFCC to enable it to fight corruption effectively.
    He emphasized the need to complete its academy to properly train and retrain staff.
     
     
     
    Bandits demand N40m for abducted Niger children

    By Adams Jonah

    The bandits, who abducted 20 children from Kusherki in Rafi Local Government Area of Niger state, are demanding a ransom of N40million for their release.

    The children, who are said to have been in captivity for over 20 days, are between ages 4 and 10 years.
    A resident of the community, Auwal Usman, in a telephone interview on Tuesday said the young children are faced with untold hardship in the hands of their abductors.

    He said, “These 20 children are really young and can’t even take care of themselves. They are between 4 to 10 years old.”

    Usman further stated that among the abducted children are four males and 16 females.
     
    The Commissioner of Internal Security and Humanitarian Affairs, Mr Emmanuel Umar, said that the state government is doing everything possible to ensure that the children are released unhurt.
     
    “The state government is doing everything within its powers to ensure that these children are united with their families safely”
     
    “The security agencies are also doing their best and we are sure that we will be victorious in the end,” he added.
     
     
     

    Gov. Udom won’t resign as PDP Campaign Council Chairman – Ologbondiyan
     
     
    By Francis Ekeh, Abuja
     
     
    The Atiku/Okowa Presidential Campaign Organization has stated that the rumour suggesting that the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Udom Emmanuel is contemplating resigning his appointment as the Chairman of the Atiku/Okowa Presidential Campaign Council is fake.

    Kola Ologbondiyan, Spokesperson of Atiku/Okowa Campaign Organization in a statement on Tuesday reassured Nigerians as well as all pro-democracy and development partners that such an idea is not in the contemplation of the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Emmanuel.

    According to the Atiku- Okowa Campaign Council, “Governor Udom Emmanuel, this afternoon at the Flag-off of the PDP Governorship Campaign which held at the Nest of Champions Stadium in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State Capital, declared that the rumour is a lie “from the pit of hell” and that he remains the Chairman of the PDP Presidential Campaign Council”.

    He said that the appointment of Governor Udom Emmanuel as Chairman of the PDP Presidential Campaign Council was predicated on his belief and commitment to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), his commitment to the ideals of founding fathers as well as his unwavering confidence in the party’s Presidential Candidate, Atiku Abubakar, as a leader that has the required capacity to rescue and rebuild the nation.

    “Governor Emmanuel is effectively and committedly leading a successful campaign that will take our Party to victory and will not be distracted by the wishful thinking of the enemies of Nigeria” Ologbondiyan claimed.
     
    The Atiku/Okowa Campaign urged Nigerians to ignore such shenanigans as fake news coming from the enemies of the nation who are desirous of causing confusion in the polity with a view to derailing the electoral process.
     
    He cautioned those behind the wicked rumour to desist from such and know that they are fighting a lost battle, claiming that Nigerians across the board are already rallying with the PDP and cannot be swayed by fake news.
     
     
     
     
     
    Atiku’ll never shy away from engaging Nigerians, says spokesperson
     
     
    By Admin
     
     
    Following the agitation that greeted the absence of PDP Presidential Candidate, Atiku Abubakar from the Town Hall meeting organised by Arise TV on Sunday, the Spokesman of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Campaign Organisation, Mr Charles Aniagwu has said that his principal, Atiku Abubakar would never avoid any opportunity to explain his rescue plans for the country.
     
    Speaking on Arise Television’s “News Day” on Tuesday, Aniagwu said while other candidates may be shying away from engaging Nigerians on the issues that bother the nation, Atiku and PDP hierarchy were mindful of the need to tell Nigerians what it tends to do to take Nigeria out of the abyss orchestrated by the ruling All Progressives Congress APC.
     
    He claimed that Atiku’s absence at the townhall series organized by Arise News in collaboration with Centre for Democracy and Development CDD on Sunday was a result of the fact that Atiku was already outside the country on a scheduled visit and had to seek permission for the organisers to allow his running mate, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa represent him.
     
    He said that the town hall meeting was different from a presidential debate and urged Nigerians to understand that when it comes to a presidential debate, the PDP Presidential Candidate will definitely be available for that purpose.
     
    “Our party was also communicated to like other parties and you do know that our candidate has never shied away from interfacing with Nigerians which is why we are the only party at the moment that has been very busy with campaigns across the length and breadth of this country.”
     
     

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