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Over 150 SANs To Defend CJN Walter Onnoghen

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Trail

At least 150 Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SANs) are said to have volunteered to represent the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Samuel Onnoghen in a trail slatted for the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) on Monday, January 14th.

On Friday, January 11, the federal government filed a six count charge against the CJN over his alleged failure to declare his assets as required by law and for operating Bank Domiciliary Foreign Currency Accounts.

Constitutional lawyer, Sebastine Hon, SAN was quoted to have said the number of eminent lawyers that have volunteered to defend the CJN might even be more than 150.

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Meanwhile, Onnoghen, has given an explanation to why he didn’t declare his assets.

According to him, he forgot to declare his asset when he assumed offie as Chief Justice. Onnoghen said this in a statement he sent to the Code of Conduct Tribunal CCB on Friday January 11.

“My asset declaration form numbers SCN 00014 and SCN 00005 were declared on the same day, 14/12/2016 because I forgot to make a declaration of my assets after the expiration of my 2005 declaration in 2009. Following my appointment as acting CJN in November, 2016, the need to declare my assets anew made me to realize the mistake.

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“I then did the declaration to cover the period in default. I did not include my standard charted bank account in SCN 000014 because I believed they were not opened. I did not make a fresh declaration of asset after my substantive appointment as CJN because I was under the impression that my SCN 000015 was to cover that period of four years which includes my term as CJN,” Mr Onnoghen said in his statement dated January 11.

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IMN React To Claim By FG That El-Zakzaky Sought Asylum In India

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El-Zakzaky

Proscribed group, Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), has refuted claims that its leader Sheikh El-Zakzaky sought asylum in India before his repatriation.

According to the group, the position adopted by the Nigerian government is a campaign of calumny.

Accorsing to IMN, the position is a lie fabricated to cover government’s “own gross misconduct in a foreign land”.

Ibrahim Musa, president Media Forum of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria stated this at a press briefing on Sunday, where he accused the Federal Government of planning to kill El-Zakzaky for insisting on which doctors the Sheikh and his wife must see, while refusing to allow them access to their own doctors.

“Before efforts at resolving this impasse could be concluded, the Sheikh was brought back to Nigeria, since their evil schemes could not be executed”, Musa said.

Read IMN’s full statement below:

Sequel to the Nigerian government’s sinister operation that frustrated the treatment of the revered Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky (H) and his wife Malam Zeenat Ibrahim in India that led to the repatriation of the couple, the Nigerian government, in its effort to deceive the general public, has concocted contradictory statements and lies to colour its acts of violating the order given by the Kaduna High court allowing the Sheikh to seek treatment in India, with the government only supervising.

The facts are that the government mischievously went beyond its role of supervision to the level of maliciously interfering in the medical process, instructing on which doctors the Sheikh and his wife must see, while refusing to allow them access to their own doctors. Apparently, the government had a hidden mission, the details of which they had detailed specific doctors to execute.

The Sheikh was forced to either accept their choice or return home within two hours.  Being mindful of the government’s various previous plots to eliminate him since 2015, first through the barrels of the gun and much later through poisoning in detention while refusing him access to adequate medical care until the court’s intervention, the Sheikh sensed the government’s intention of inducing killer doctors to finish what they had earlier started, now through the back door.

He therefore insisted on having the presence of the doctors that initially assessed him in Nigeria, who also worked in that hospital, failing which, he preferred to return to Nigeria.  He refused to be subjected to any breach in the basic ethical principles guiding the medical treatment of people of respect for persons: protecting the autonomy of all people and treating them with courtesy and respect and allowing for informed consent, which the Nigerian government had contracted medical personnel in the Indian hospital to throw to the wind.

Before efforts at resolving this impasse could be concluded, the Sheikh was brought back to Nigeria, since their evil schemes could not be executed. The government is now churning out contradictory explanations to blame the Sheikh for not allowing himself to be killed in the name of medical treatment. The Nigerian government is also blackmailing the Sheikh that he sought for asylum in India just to cover their own gross misconduct in a foreign land.

The campaign of calumny has been championed by the Federal Ministry of Information, which sarcastically even said they were apologising to India for the Sheikh’s “unruly behaviour” rather than for their own obvious attempted assassination of somebody in another country!  Isn’t it rather contradictory that someone allegedly seeking asylum would be unwilling to stay back irrespective of the circumstances but preferring instead to return to his home country.

It is on record that it was the Sheikh who requested to be brought back home having been denied access to his doctors and rejecting the killer squad engaged to “treat” him instead.  The government’s claim that Sheikh’s wife antagonized the Nigerian officials by accusing them of killing her three children is yet another spurious search for justification for its maltreatment of the couple. Isn’t it true that it is the government that killed her three sons when its army invaded their residence at night in December 2015?

Wasn’t her husband dragged over the corpses of their murdered children having been shot himself and left swimming in his own pool of blood? Wasn’t she also shot and left lying lifeless in the process? Were they expecting a cheer from her for all these severe gross violation of their fundamental rights, even as judged by a competent federal court?  It is rather very shameful and a slap in the face of Nigeria that the government which hitherto claimed it had no hand in the case, now has to resort to lies, calumny and blackmail against a couple whose alleged crimes has never ever been proved in any court of the land.

All the allegations against this couple have always been merely spurious and unproven, and knowing that they could never prove in any court use the might of state power to intimidate and misinform the public.  It is noteworthy to state that the government is yet to respond to the confessions by the Saudi Arabian Crown Prince that they sponsored the Zaria genocide and the subsequent continued detention of the Sheikh in Nigeria.

This same fact was earlier alluded to by President Muhammadu Buhari during a state visit to Qatar. The world is watching all the persecution of the Islamic leader with keen interest. The government can never change the narrative.

We wish to thank the general public for their continued understanding and show of support in all these. No amount of feeding the public with concocted half-truths, lies and campaigns of calumny would swerve the course of justice for all the victims of Zaria genocide and its aftermath”

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Senate President Condemn Shameful Assult On Ekweremadu

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The Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, has described as shameful the assault on former Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu.

Recall that the ex-Senate President was recently assulted by members of Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), in Nuremberg, Germany where he was to give a keynote address at the Second Igbo Annual Cultural Festival and Convention organised by Ndi-Igbo Germany.

Condemning the assult on Ekweremadu, Lawan said:

“It is incredibly absurd for anybody to blame the distinguished Senator for the violent criminal activities in his home base, the purported reason cited by the mob for the bewildering attack.

“Senator Ekweremadu, like all his distinguished colleagues in the Ninth Assembly of the Senate, is concerned about the insecurity and other challenges in that area and other parts of Nigeria. Senator Ekweremadu has also been at the forefront of the patriotic efforts to find lasting solutions to the challenges.

“The barbaric attack on Senator Ekweremadu at a forum to which he was invited to contribute to charting a course for the progress and happiness of Ndigbo debase our values as civilised people. It is most reprehensible and should be condemned by all right-thinking Nigerians,” Lawan said.

He urged the German authorities to identify those involved in the despicable act so that the law can take its course against them. Lawan also urged Nigerians to always reflect deeply and broadly before embarking on a course of action and advised the youth to ventilate whatever grievances they have along lines prescribed by the law and recommended by reason and democratic ethos.

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The Senate President then urged Senator Ekweremadu not to be deterred by the incident from his path of service to his people and Nigerians in general, but to take it as part of the sacrifice of leadership.

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Boy Found Two Years After Going Missing In Ogun State

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RCCG

The police has found a seven year-old boy who went missing in Ogun State two years ago.

Joshua Joseph, was declared missing by his parents in Ijebu-Ode area of Ogun State in 2017.

Two years later, he has now been found with one Blessing Ozor who reportedly paid N1.05m for his ‘adoption’.

The boy renamed Chisom was adopted by a level-13 civil servant in the Anambra State Ministry of Women Affairs identified as Ifeoma Joy.

Speaking at the state police headquarters where the boy was handed over to his parents, Ogun State Commissioner of Police Bashir Makama said the boy was found after officers from the command carried out a painstaking investigation.

The staff of Anambra State Ministry of Women Affairs accused of collecting over N1m from the boy’s adopted mother and forging adoption documents from the Anambra State Ministry of Women Affairs, was linked to a three-member syndicate which specialised in stealing and selling children. Other members of the gang include Rita and Angela and it was learnt they are serving time in prisons at Edo and Ondo states.

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“Joy is working at the Ministry of Women Affairs in Anambra State. She used the opportunity to arrange buyers for stolen children.

“In the cause of looking for her, she got transferred to four local government councils within one month in order to evade arrest.

“Our findings showed that eight children had been stolen by this syndicate from Ogun State and four had been recovered.

“One of the stolen children was found when the people, who adopted him, saw the boy’s picture on the pages of newspapers and returned him” Ogun state police PRO Abimbola Oyeyemi said.

 

However Joy on her own part insisted that she did nothing wrong but only helped out a sister in fellowship.

 

She said, “I never did such a thing. I know the woman, who brought this boy, as a worker at the Peace Sisters’ Home.

“So, when my sister in fellowship (Ozor) came up with the idea of adopting a child, I called the other woman to help us get a boy and I gave Rita my sister’s particulars. When she finished with the particulars, she now came with this boy. I never knew the boy was stolen.”

 

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Recounting how she made the payment to alleged member of child-trafficking gang, Ozor said she paid N150,000 for processing of the adoption papers and additional N900,000 when the process was completed.

 

“I am just a victim of circumstances by my foolishness. I went to a sister in our fellowship, who had adopted a child before, because I have two daughters already but I had a feeling for a son; my last daughter is 24 years old.

“I went through Rita because she and her husband had adopted a child before and they led me to this woman, Joy. I believed that everything was okay because she made me believe that she runs the Peace Sisters Home” she said.

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