Across Nigeria Press Releases


The media recently reported the decision of the Federal Government in line with its anti-corruption drive to reopen corruption cases against former Delta state governor, James Ibori and 30 other former governors. The Federal government is said to have taken the step through the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, last week in a letter written to the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission, ICPC, instructing the Commission to forward the case files of all former governors that are standing trial for corruption.
Mr. Debo Adeniran speaking on behalf of CACOL, said “we welcome this decision even if it‘s coming late, because justice delayed is justice denied. Our Coalition remains one of the main civil society groups that have been at the fore-front of the call for the prosecution of Mr. James Ibori in particular and the other former Governors for corruption charges against them.”
“Since 2009, we have through petitions, protests and other legitimate means of agitating for the trail of these suspected corruption criminals but have been faced with frustrations of different kinds because of the antics and profile of the persons involved. It is therefore a welcome development as it is better late than never. The Federal government must however match words with actions in terms of expediting the implementation of this logical decision.”
Media reports indicate that some of the ex-governors include some, who had been convicted for charges preferred against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC. Five of the former governors are now serving senators according to the reports.
The Chairman of CACOL recalled when he and some other members went on behalf of the Coalition to submit a petition to the trial Judge on James Ibori’s crimes and got attacked by thugs. He said “we get exposed to hazards in the task we have set for ourselves, for example, our members were attacked within the court premises when Ibori’s case came up in Kaduna in 2007. I barely survived being kidnapped when I went to submit CACOL’s petition to the trial Judge, Mr. Justice Marcel Awokulehin in Asaba, Delta state, Ibori’s thugs who wore suits and pretended to be security agents stabbed our members on the head early 2010 when we went to protest against his giving Business Hallmark lecture on corruption in Lagos.”
“It is only the bringing of elements like Ibori and others to book for their crimes that will logically mean the achievement of the goal of anti-corruption in those high profile cases. That is why, even with Ibori serving a jail term in the UK, we demand that the Federal government should seek his extradition back to the country to face trial for his corruption crimes as soon he completes his jail term.”
Continuing Mr. Adeniran said ‘the others including those currently serving have no immunity against prosecution, thus, the government should waste no more time in acting considering the grave risks the country is taking with suspected corruption criminals with probably 8 years experience in looting in the Hallowed Chambers and directing the affairs of the country.”
“We call for the posthumous stripping of the Presidential Pardon granted to the late fugitive, Mr. Alaimaeyeseigha Diepreye, and his posthumous trail. Those former governors who have been enjoying ‘perpetual injunctions’ for close to a decade now, like Mr. Peter Odili and Joshua Dariye’s cases must be exhumed. All past and present plunderers of our Commonwealth must be made to pay for their crimes.”
In concluding Adeniran called on the ICPC to immediately act on the reported letter from the Federal government to the Agency saying that the ball was now in their court. He called on the EFCC to also revisit all the related cases that Agency had handled in the past in spite of previous frustrations of efforts of the Agency and civil society groups like the Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders, CACOL.

Wale Salami
Media Coordinator, CACOL
July 27, 2016

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