Lawyer calls for policies to protect physically-challenged citizens

A physically-challenged person and trained lawyer, Mrs Catherine Edeh, has called for the introduction of policies that would carter for the welfare of physically-challenged people in the country.

Edeh, who is the founder of a non-governmental organization, ‘Voice of Disability Initiative’ (VDI), made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Abuja.

She urged government at all levels, to adequately address the challenges facing such persons to enable them explore their potentials.

Citing herself as an example, Edeh explained that having hearing impairment, she could only practice as a lawyer with the help of an interpreter.

“I cannot practice law now because our courts do not have interpreters and I cannot engage the services of an interpreter due to the high cost.

“I will have to pay an interpreter as high as N15, 000 for one day’s job and I cannot afford it but if our courts have interpreters, I will be able to practice as a lawyer, ’’ she said.

Edeh further called on President Muhammadu Buhari  to sign into law, the Disability Rights Bill passed by the 7th National Assembly, saying  her colleagues would be accorded their rights better under such a law.

According to her, physically-challenged persons are not being treated with dignity in public places, adding that it also is particularly very difficult for them to secure employment.

Edeh identified lack of easy access to public transport and public buildings like the courts, banks and hospitals among others, as some of their major challenges.

“Passage of the Nigeria Disability Rights Bill is very important because if implemented, almost all the basic needs of physically-challenged persons will be taken care of,” she said.

Another physically-challenged person who spoke to NAN, Mr Ezekiel Bende, complained of residential apartments not having facilities to suit their  needs.

Bende said he always encountered difficulties accessing his apartment, adding that his landlord’s response to his complaint over staircase facility was not pleasing.

He therefore urged the government to establish a commission that would handle the affairs of physically-challenged persons in the country.

He said the commission would also handle cases of offenders or violators of rights of such persons.


Source: PUNCH

We sacked Justice Ngwuta’s lead prosecutor – Office of AGF

The Federal Government says the National Prosecution Coordination Committee (NPCC) sacked Charles Adeogun-Philips, the lead prosecutor in the suit against Supreme Court judge, Justice Sylvester Ngwuta for unprofessional conduct.

Salisu Isah, Special Adviser on Media to the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, revealed this in a statement on Sunday in Abuja.

Mr. Adeogun-Philips had on Thursday, at the resume hearing of the case, announced his withdrawal but did not give any reason for his action.

Mr. Ngwuta is facing trial before Justice James Too on charges of money laundering, age falsification and illegal possession of multiple international passports, among others.

Mr. Isah, who is also Head of Communication and Public Affairs, NPCC, said that Mr. Adeogun-Philips’ sack was conveyed to him in a letter.

He said that the NPCC that engaged the services of Mr. Adeogun-Philips, withdrew the fiat issued to him to prosecute the case over non-disclosure of conflict of interest and for other sundry reasons.

He said the impression given by Mr. Adeogun-Philips suggesting that he withdrew from the case on his own volition was not true.

“The report that he left in protest due to last week Tuesday’s dropping of charges earlier instituted against the Chief Registrar of the Supreme Court, Ahmed Gambo Saleh and two other officials of the apex court which he is also handling cannot be relied upon.

“The insinuation that the attorney-general withdrew the case against the three Supreme Court officials because they are Northerners is also unwarranted.

“The dropping of the suit was done in good faith and in the context of plea bargaining to achieve greater goals in the prosecution of the other bigger cases that are ongoing against Justice Sylvester Ngwuta among others.”

According to Mr. Isah, it is “wicked and childish” for anyone to allude undue colouration to an action taken in national interest and reduce it to a North/South thing.

“This is not the first time such process will be entered into in law, especially so as the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015 allows plea bargaining in line with national interest.

“And as a way of precedence, there was a time in the history of this nation that the allegations against Sgt. Rogers, who was accused of killing Kudirat Abiola, were stepped down for him to be used to testify against Maj Hamza Al-Mustapha.

“This was in the case between him and the Lagos State government over the killing of the wife of the acclaimed winner of the 1992 presidential election, late Chief M.K.O Abiola.

“It has now clearly shown that, either corruption is fighting back or simply that some people want to be mischievous and to hoodwink and divert the estimation of Nigerians from the core issues at stake.”

He expressed concern that no one was talking of the “unprofessional conduct” of Mr. Adeosun-Philips who was handling a brief in an ongoing suit at the Federal High Court in Lagos against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

He said this amounted to conflict of interest which he failed to disclose when being engaged.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the NPCC, chaired by Mr. Malami, was inaugurated by Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo on May 27, 2016.

It is charged with assisting the Attorney- General in the exercise of his prosecutorial powers under Section 150 and 174(1) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria; especially as it involves high profile criminal cases.(NAN)

Ex-Minister, senior Nigerian lawyer docked for alleged N450 million laundering.

A Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Mohammed Belgore, and a former Minister of National Planning, Abubakar Suleiman, were on Wednesday in Lagos granted bail on own recognisance after entering a plea of `not guilty’.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, charged the duo before a Federal High Court, Lagos, for alleged five-count offences bordering on money laundering to the tune of N450 million.

Justice Aikawa, who gave the ruling, said since the prosecution did not oppose the bail application and considering the accused’s standing in the society, “they will not likely jump bail.”

He, however, ordered that their international passports should be deposited with the court’s Deputy Chief Registrar and only to be released on the court’s order.

The EFCC accused them of conspiring to directly take possession of N450 million which they “reasonably ought to have known formed part of the proceeds of an unlawful act.”

The commission said both the minister and the lawyer committed the offences on March 27, 2015.

Apart from taking possession of N450 million, the accused were said to have conspired to make cash payment of the sum to one Sheriff Shagaya without going through a financial institution.

The offences, according to the EFCC, contravened the provisions of Section 15, 15(3), 16, 16(2) 18(a) and 18 (d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act, 2012.

The accused pleaded not guilty to all the counts.

The counsel to the first accused (Mr. Belgore), Ebun Shofunde, urged the court to grant him bail on own-recognisance.

“Given his antecedents, I am asking that the bail should be on self-recognizance because he has always made himself available while on administrative bail.

“He has been a Senior Advocate of Nigeria since 2001; he is not a threat and he is not likely to jump bail given his standing. He has also been a lawyer since 1985.”

Also, counsel to the second accused (Mr. Suleiman), Bolaji Ayorinde, wanted the court to grant the former minister bail on own-recognisance.

He said:“He is a renowned educationist, a professor of political science and international relations at the University of Abuja.

“He has served this country as a minister in 2014. He has been involved in teaching and research for the past 30 years; he has graduated more than 10,000 students for the past 30 years.

“He voluntarily submitted himself to EFCC and never contravened the terms of his administrative bail. I urge your lordship to grant him bail on self-recognition,” he said.

Counsel to the EFCC, Rotimi Oyedepo, however, did not oppose the bail applications.

“We leave bail at your lordship’s discretion and pray that your lordship should impose conditions that will compel their attendance for trial.”

The case has been adjourned to February 23 for trial.


Source: NAN

Judge orders engineer to defend himself if he fails to produce lawyer.

Justice S.S Ogunsanya of the Ikeja Division of the Lagos High Court Tuesday ordered an engineer, Kayode Adebanju, to prepare to defend himself if he fails to get a lawyer at a date adjourned for his trial.

Mr. Adebanju is being accused of issuing dud cheques to the tune of N31 million to Lukman Abuduni.

Counsel to the prosecution, T.A. Arabi, had earlier told the judge that no lawyer had announced appearance for the defendant in four previous court sittings.

“I pray this court that on the next adjourned date, if the defendant doesn’t have a lawyer to represent him, he will have no other option than to represent himself in court,” Mr. Arabi added.

The judge, mildly amused, noted that the prosecution lawyer at some point during previous proceedings had been absent in court.

But he told Mr. Adebanju he would defend himself on the next adjourned date.

“Registrar, tell the defendant that if he does not come to court on the next adjourned date, he will be defending this case by himself,” Judge Ogunsanya added.

In the suit, Mr. Abuduni had, sometime in November 2012, supplied Mr. Adebanju iron rods totalling N89 million out of which the latter allegedly paid N28 million.

“After a long wait in futility for the completion of the money, I made a primary investigation in the site which revealed that the engineer had collected the money,” Mr. Lukman said

“When I asked him for the completion of the money he issued me three cheques totaling N31 million. When I found out that the cheques were dud cheques, I used them as evidence to petition him at the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.”

The judge adjourned the case April 10 for trial.

Lawyers accuse fugitive Buruji Kashamu of threats to life.

A week after a U.S. court insisted on his extradition for drug related offences, Nigerian senator Buruji Kashamu has been accused by some lawyers of alleged threat to their lives.

A group of lawyers in Ogun State petitioned the state Commissioner of Police over alleged threat to their lives and attempted murder by Mr. Kashamu, who has claimed the U.S. drug case was that of mistaken identity.

The lawyers, in a letter by Edwards Group Chambers dated January 30, alleged that Mr. Kashamu had contracted suspected hired killers to eliminate them for being counsel to the defendant in a case instituted by Mr. Kashamu.

The Senator had filed the suit against a member of the House of Representatives, Ladi Adebutu, before an Abeokuta High Court for allegedly calling Mr. Kashamu a fugitive and drug baron.

The lawyers, in the petition copied the Inspector General of Police, Senate President, Chief Judge of Ogun State, Director of State Security Service and Director, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency?, alleged that the grouse of Mr. Kashamu was that they accepted a brief to defend Mr. Adebutu in the case.

Signed by Kayode Akinsola on their behalf, the petitioners ?stated that after the proceedings of January 25 in the court, suspected thugs who they alleged had been brought to the court by Mr. Kashamu, pursued the lawyers and fired gun shots at their vehicles.

They further alleged that the attempt on their lives was in reaction to their cross examination of Mr. Kashamu in the court.

“Unfortunately, the rigorous cross examination of Buruji Kashamu by Chief Edwards Odugbesan on matters that borders on the alleged criminal atrocities of Senator Buruji Kashamu in the United States and United Kingdom purportedly infuriated Senator Buruji Kashamu and his teeming supporters in court, majority of whom we later discovered to be hired thugs of Senator Buruji Kashamu sometime last week”, they wrote in the petition.

“Suffice it to say that the aftermath of the close of proceedings of 25th January, 2017 witnessed an ugly situation where thugs of the popular politician ran after our vehicles and shot to the air somewhere before getting to Kuto, Abeokuta, Ogun State, forcing us to scamper into safety and narrowly escaped being killed”, they stated.

The lawyers added further that “the above egregious state of? affairs was further aggravated by the threat to take human lives, personally made by Kashamu and captured by the Punch Newspaper of Monday, January 30, ‘wherein he vowed to kill up to five persons before he can be forcefully extradited to the United States of America to answer to charges of his alleged involvement in banned substances’.”

Mr. Kashamu’s spokesperson has since told PREMIUM TIMES his principal did not issue the threat to kill anyone.

The lawyers urged the police to offer them protection on the next date of hearing on February

“It will not be out of place to state that the defendant and all the lawyers representing the defendant are endangered species and prime targets of Senator Buruji Kashamu’s thugs and assassins therewith.

“As a corollary to the foregoing, we apply for provision of adequate security cover and orderly for all the lawyers representing the defendant before, during and after court proceedings.

“We equally invite you to investigate the alleged intention of Senator Buruji Kashamu as to the names of those he intend to kill in the aforesaid national publication and occurrence of the 25 January, 2016”?,they stated in their petition.

In his reaction, Mr. Kashamu’s media assistant, Austin Oniyokor, described the allegation as laughable.

“There was nothing  like attack on anybody,” Mr. Oniyokor said on Wednesday. “We came to Abeokuta and after the hearing? we left peacefully. Even, we met the governor’s convoy and he can testify to our peaceful exit.”

The aide said if such attack truly occurred, it would have been reported in the media, and the lawyers would not wait for about a week before reporting it to the police.

Lagos lawyer want Court to stop Magu from parading himself as EFCC chairman

A Lagos based lawyer and activist, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa on Monday filed a suit at the court which seek to stop Ibrahim Magu from parading himself as the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC).

In the suit which was filed at a Federal High Court in Lagos, Adegboruwa is also asking the Senate not to entertain any further request for the confirmation of Magu as Chairman since the Senate has declined to confirm his nomination as Chairman of the Commission.

Aside from Magu, other defendants in the suit are the Senate and the Attorney-General of the Federation(AGF).

The human right lawyer asked the court to restrain the Federal Government of Nigeria, the EFCC and all other authorities, from recognizing, treating or in any other manner dealing with Magu as the Chairman of EFCC, either in acting or substantive capacity.

Adegboruwa also sought for a declaration of the court that given his conduct in office so far, that Magu is not fit and proper person to function in office as chairman of EFCC.

The lawyer asked the court to give an order forthwith directing Magu to vacate and relinquish his office as EFCC Chairman, whether in acting or substantive capacity.

He also contends in the suit that all actions taken by the EFCC under the ‘illegal’ tenure of Magu, especially charges and information filed in court, are illegal, null and void.

In a 39 paragraphs affidavit deposed by Adegboruwa in support of the suit, he traced the appointment of Magu back to November 9, 2015, contending that he has been functioning in acting capacity as EFCC Chairman, beyond the six months allowed by law.

No date has been fixed for hearing of the suit.

Source: Daily Trust

How man, allegedly stabbed to death by lawyer wife, died – Pathologist

A consultant pathologist with the University College Hospital, UCH, Ibadan, Abduldeen Oluwanisola, has told an Oyo State High Court in Ibadan that haemorrhagic shock from stab wound killed Lowo Oyediran.

Mr. Oluwanisola made this assertion while testifying before the court in a murder case against Yewande Oyediran, a lawyer accused of stabbing her husband, Lowo, to death.

Lowo was allegedly stabbed to death by the defendant at their Akobo area residence in Ibadan on February 2, 2016.

The accused was subsequently arrested and charged to court, and six prosecuting witnesses had so far testified since the commencement of the trial.

Testifying as the seventh witness, the pathologist said that a request of coronal autopsy of the deceased from the Nigeria Police made him to receive the body at the Adeoyo Hospital, Ibadan, on February 3.

He said the autopsy was carried out at about 10.30 a.m. on February 4 and affirmed that there was a stab wound on the left shoulder, located about 10cm from the root of the neck.

”There was a second fresh incision injury of wound located on the lower outer edge of the lower jaw.

“Our opinion to the cause of the death is haemorrhagic shock from stab wound sustained from a sharp object,” the pathologist said.

Also, in his evidence, Oladeji Olayemi, Investigating Police Officer, IPO, said the defendant had declared in her statement that she did not kill her husband.

According to the IPO, but she agreed to have stabbed him with a pair of scissors.

“She stated that the deceased fell on a knife he was holding and was wounded in the neck when she was struggling to pull herself from the deceased.

“The defendant said the deceased had earlier hit her with a plank while sleeping, and he later picked a knife, and was chasing her within their apartment.

“She said but, she managed to run outside where the deceased fell on the knife,” the witness said.

However, Justice Munta Abimbola admitted the said plank, two Ipads and a Samsung cell phone recovered by the police from the couple’s apartment as exhibits.

The judge then adjourned the case till Thursday for cross examination of the police inspector.

Activist rejects Church’s award after request for ‘small assistance’.

Inibehe Effiong, a lawyer and human rights activist, has rejected a “Freedom and Justice Award” that was to be given to him by a local branch of the African Church in Akwa Ibom State.

The award ceremony took place on Sunday

, without Mr. Effiong showing up.

Mr. Effiong said he rejected the award from the St. Paul’s Parish of the church, Eket, because of “unnecessary expectation” from the church.

“I cannot accept an award that violates my principles and values,” Mr. Effiong said.

“My work as a human rights lawyer cum activist is totally humanitarian and selfless. I believe that any recognition or appreciation of my modest humanitarian activities by any individual or group should be without a request or expectation of reward.”

The young lawyer explained that he took to Facebook to publish his “Notice of Rejection” because he had previously used the same medium to publicise the church’s decision to bestow the award on him.

Richard Peter, the priest in-charge of St. Paul’s Parish, in his response to Mr. Effiong, explained what the lawyer meant by “unnecessary expectation”.

Mr. Peter said Mr. Effiong and others who were to receive different categories of awards from the church were expected to assist the church complete a “small project”. He did not mention what the project was all about.

“It was never a condition (for the award) or compulsory. But (just) an appeal for support,” Mr. Peter said.

The clergy told PREMIUM TIMES, Tuesday, that he was embarrassed by Mr. Effiong’s action.

He said he had never met with Mr. Effiong before, but that he had followed his activism through the social media, and that his nomination of the lawyer was to encourage him to touch the lives of people.

He said he called Mr. Effiong to brief him in advance that during the award ceremony the awardees would likely raise money publicly to support a church project, and that he did not want the lawyer to be surprised or embarrassed when it happened.

Buying of titles, awards and honours is a common practice among rich and influential Nigerians.

“Though I feel so sad about it, I want us to forget about what happened,” the clergy, Mr. Peter said.

Rogue Lawyer, Emeka Ugwuonye, Dupes Young Client Through Company Registration

Osasu Igiebor, a student and start-up entrepreneur seeking to register her business, has been defrauded by Emeka Ugwuonye, a lawyer with a rich history of misdeeds verging on criminality that has been widely reported by SaharaReporters. He is currently disbarred in some jurisdictions in the United States, where he used to ply his trade.

Ms. Igiebor said she contacted Ugwuonye, now of Eculaw Firm based in Nigeria, last month to help register with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) a magazine she was planning to set up.

Ms. Igiebor told SaharaReporters that the lawyer agreed to do the registration for a fee of $200, which she agreed to pay into the lawyer’s account in the United States of America.

She subsequently asked Mr. Ugwuonye if he would be able to reserve the business name with the CAC, so she could commence registration.

Mr. Ugwuonye, explained Ms. Igiebor, said he was not doing the registration with CAC because the commission only registers company names, adding that since it was a magazine name, the prospective publisher needed to obtain an “SSNR” registration from the National Library because that is what is required to register a magazine name in Nigeria. Mr. Ugwuonye advised that his client call the following week to get an update.

That was the beginning of trouble.

When Ms. Igiebor contacted him as advised, Mr. Ugwuonye said she would need to call again the week after that. The alarm bells in Ms. Igiebor’s head began to ring. She asked Mr. Ugwuonye what SSNR stood for. The lawyer, curiously, said he did not know. The alarm bells chimed more loudly.

“I was surprised that he was doing a registration for SSNR but did not know the full meaning of SSNR,” Ms. Igiebor told SaharaReporters.

The next day, the lawyer tried to make amends via a text message, saying SSNR was the product of a typographical error and that he had meant to type ISSN (International Standard Serial Number).

Ms. Igiebor decided to contact the National Library on Facebook to find out the requirements for ISSN and how long the processing takes. She was provided with a link, which she opened only to discover that it was totally unrelated to what the lawyer had told him.

Now convinced that Mr. Ugwuonye was running a game on her and feeding her wrong information, Ms. Igiebor asked that the process be discontinued and demanded a refund of $150 out of $200 paid into the lawyer’s account.

Mr. Ugwuonye pushed back, claiming he had already started the processing, and promised to give Ms. Igiebor feedback the following week. As agreed, Ms. Igiebor contacted the lawyer for the feedback, but all she has received is a runaround, with the client unable to find the lawyer to obtain anything.

Ms. Igiebor, obviously, was unaware that she was dealing with a man of great crookedness. Six years ago, in the United States, Mr. Ugwuonye was disbarred by the Attorney Grievance Commission in Maryland for duping clients, just as he was in Washington DC and New York. He remains under temporary suspension.

Last month, SaharaReporters revealed that Mr. Ugwuonye had been lined up to face possible disciplinary action before the Nigerian Legal Disciplinary Committee (NLPDC), the body responsible for punishing misconduct among lawyers. His name was among those listed in a newspaper advertorial signed by Ms. H.A Turaki, NLDPC Secretary, and published by The Punch.

Mr. Ugwuonye was similarly lined up to face disciplinary proceedings by the Washington DC Bar over allegations that he pocketed over $1.55 million he had collected from the US government on behalf of the Nigerian Embassy.

The Washington DC Bar, SaharaReporters reported, wrote to notify Mr. Ugwuonye of its decision to schedule an investigation into his handling of the legal aspects of the sale of some real estate once owned by Nigeria.

Mr. Ugwuonye was said to have responded to the Washington DC Bar with a claim that he was “under severe travel restrictions” by the Nigerian government over criminal trials he had been undergoing since 2011.

The website, however, learnt from a government source that he was under no travel restriction. After a US District Judge ordered him to refund the $1.55million he had stolen from the Nigerian Embassy, Mr. Ugwuonye attempted to file for bankruptcy, an application that as dismissed by a US court.

Similarly dismissed was a libel case Mr/ Ugwuonye filed against SaharaReporters for exposing his fraud against the Nigerian Embassy. Instead, a US judge upheld the request of the Nigerian Embassy in a lawsuit it filed seeking an order to compel the dubious lawyer to return the stolen money and pay interest on it as well.

On Facebook, the lawyer claims to provide an “authentic voice for justice, fairness, equity and right to the pursuit of happiness” through Due Process Advocates, a public group he created on the social media platform. He, however, demands money for membership of the group. He was exposed as a con by one Mr. Obinna Aligwekwe, a UK-based Nigerian doctor.

Mr. Aligwekwe had pointed the attention of Mr. Ugwuonye’s Facebook followers to an apparent scam the lawyer was trying to pull with the case of a missing woman he claimed to have been investigating.

The doctor wrote as follows: “Emeka Ugwuonye of DPA, that man who is investigating the case of that missing lady, Charity, is a scam until proven otherwise.

“You start a pro-bono case, then in the middle of the game you start charging membership fees. Meanwhile you and your minions maligned and castigated other well-meaning Nigerians, who equally cared about Charity, but were asking logical questions.

“Running on emotions of Nigerians for ‘worthy causes’ to carry out activities that are not transparent seems to be the in-thing.”

Another scandal involving the dodgy lawyer featured Amanda Chisom, publisher of

The blogger had also labeled the lawyer a fraud on Facebook. Mr. Ugwuonye did not defend himself against the allegation that he is crooked, but curiously claimed, concerning a group supposedly dedicated to justice and other noble causes, that Amanda had attempted to seduce him when he went to her house. He further stated that he did not have sex with her, but that he possessed her nude pictures.

Amanda replied that it was the lawyer who had been pestering her for sex, but that she turned down his advances because she does not like short men, especially one with an oversized head.

N27m cash was ‘found in Justice Ngwuta’s bathroom’ – FG lawyer

Counsel to the Federal Government, Charles Adeogun Philips, on Monday told an Abuja Federal High Court that N27m in cash was found at the residence of a Supreme Court Justice, Sylvester Ngwuta, but it “completely disappeared.”

According to Philip, the large sum was allegedly found in Ngwuta’s bathroom but the judge later ordered that the money be removed.

Philips made the claim while arguing against the bail application by Ngwuta’s lawyer, Kanu Agabi, SAN.

Alleging that the apex court judge gave the order for the money to be removed on October 9, the Federal Government’s lawyer informed the court that Ngwuta attempted to conceal evidence.

Philips claimed that Ngwuta first instructed a witness to “go and get rid of those cars,” adding that the second instruction was “go to my bathroom you will find two bags.

“The bags contained 27m in cash”, and that “they were moved from the location.

”There are sufficient grounds that the defendant will interfere with potential prosecution witnesses and with evidence.

“We object to bail being granted because we are of the opinion that the defendant may conceal or destroy evidence.”

The Federal Government’s counsel urged the court not to grant the accused judge bail because he possessed multiple identities, and could jump bail because he once left the country with false identification.

Agabi, hwever, prayed the court to grant his client bail in liberal terms and self recognition, stressing that the offence Ngwuta was standing trial for was bailable.

Justice John Tsoho after listening to the argument of both lawyers adjourned the matter for an hour to deliver a ruling.

Earlier, the apex court justice had pleaded not guilty to the 16-count charges preferred against him by the Federal Government.

Recall that the Department of State Services, DSS, had on October 8, arrested Ngwuta alongside some judges over alleged corrupt practices.

Activist sues National Assembly over purchase of multi-billion Naira cars

A Lagos-based lawyer and activist has urged a federal court to declare as unlawful the purchase of exotic cars by lawmakers in the National Assembly.

Malcolm Omirhobo said he is suing the lawmakers for himself and on behalf of the people of Nigeria.

Joined as defendants in the suit before the Lagos Division of the Federal High Court are the Attorney General of the Federation and the National Assembly.

Last week, the House of Representatives began delivery of the first batch of 360 Peugeot cars to lawmakers in Abuja.

The House had allocated N3.6 billion in the 2016 budget for the purchase of the cars.

The delivery of the vehicles to members of the Lower House came months after the Senate began its own allocation of 108 four-wheel drive Toyota Land Cruiser vehicles budgeted at N36.5 million each.

The lawmakers’ actions had drawn intense criticism from Nigerians who questioned the acquisition of such luxury cars amidst a recession.

In his suit, Mr. Omirhobo urged the court to decide:

“Whether the provisions of the Public Procurement Act 2007, applies to all procurement of goods, works and services carried out by the government.

“Whether the Senate and House of Representatives have complied with the provision of the Public Procurement Act, 2007 in the procurement of their official cars?

“Whether in the face of the Public Procurement Act, it is lawful for the defendants to refuse to patronize and purchase affordable locally manufactured cars for official use.

“Whether it is lawful and legal for the senate to acquire cars at prices twice the market price value

“Whether in the face of section 42 of the 1999 constitution, for the defendants to use of tax payers money to purchase exotic and expensive cars considering the country’s economic situation.”

He, therefore, seeks a declaration that by the provisions of the Public Procurement Act , 2007, it is unlawful for the defendants to purchase their official cars without complying with the provisions of the Act.

Mr. Omirhobo sought a declaration that it is wasteful for the defendants not to purchase made in Nigeria car as their official vehicles.

He urged for an order of perpetual injunction, restraining the defendants from purchasing their official cars, without compliance with the public procurement Act.

He also sought an order, compelling the defendants to purchase affordable locally manufactured cars as their official cars instead of imported/foreign, exotic and expensive cars.

No date has been fixed for hearing of the new suit.

Judge’s Absence stalls Trial of Lagos lawyer Adegboruwa

The scheduled continuation of trial of a Lagos-based lawyer, Mr. Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, before a Federal High Court in Lagos was stalled on Thursday as the presiding judge, Justice Oluremi Oguntoyinbo, did not sit.

The case was consequently adjourned till January 30, 2017.

Adegboruwa is being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission for allegedly dealing in a landed property in defiance of a court order.

The EFCC arraigned him on May 13, 2016 on one count alongside one Jonathan Udeagbala, said to be at large.

The anti-graft agency, in the charge, marked FHC/L/181c/2016, claimed that Adegboruwa and Udeagbala dealt in a property “lying, being and situate at House 105, Nicon Estate, Lekki, Lagos,” without the authorisation of the EFCC.

The prosecution said property was a subject of litigation before Justice C. A. Balogun of the Lagos State High Court.

The EFCC claimed that on August 13, 2013, Adegboruwa and Udeagbala leased the property in defiance of an order of interim injunction made by Justice Balogun on June 18, 2012, concerning the property.

The defendants were accused of leasing the property to one Shelf Drilling Nigeria Limited in the sum of N61,631,944.65, which the EFCC claimed was credited to Adegboruwa’s account with Zenith Bank.

The prosecutor claimed that Adegboruwa and Udeagbala committed an offence punishable under Section 32(1) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (Establishment) Act 2004.

But Adegboruwa pleaded not guilty, following which Justice Oguntoyinbo admitted him to a N10m bail with two sureties in like sum.

The sureties, the judge said, must be landed property owners in Lagos, whose bank account details and office and residential addresses must be verified by the court’s registrar.

Meanwhile, a Lagos State High Court in Igbosere, presided over by Justice Aishat Opesanwo, has reportedly recently vacated the interim order of Justice C.A. Balogun, which the EFCC alleged that Adegboruwa defied.

Lagos lawyer sues Ambode over council appointments

Aggrieved over the appointment of sole administrators for the 57 local government areas and local council development areas in Lagos state, a Lagos-based lawyer, Tope Alabi has sued Governor Akinwunmi Ambode at the Federal High Court, Lagos.

He is seeking for a declaration that the appointments violated the 1999 Constitution and are therefore illegal, null and void.

Besides the governor, other respondents in the suit are the Lagos Attorney-General and the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC).

Alabi said the councils were not parastatals or boards to which the governor could make such appointments, but the third tier of government, which must be governed democratically through elected chairmen and councilors.
He is praying the court to declare that the state has no power under the Constitution to appoint a sole administrator to run the affairs of any council.

The applicant wants the court to restrain RMAFC from disbursing funds meant for the councils to the governor or any other state official until there is an election.

Alabi sought an order nullifying the appointment of sole administrators on June 13 for being unconstitutional, as well as an order mandating the respondents to account for all the monies disbursed to the council areas.

The lawyer also sought an order directing the Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC) to conduct council election within 30 days of the suits determination.

Dubai Properties: Buratai Did No Wrong– Lawyer

A legal practitioner and human rights activist, Ugochuk­wu Osuagwu, has said the accusations of impropriety levelled against the Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Tukur Buratai was diver­sionary.

Buratai had come un­der fire for acquiring two properties in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates (UAE). While speaking with news men at the weekend in Abuja, Usuagwu said the common trend among Nigerians had been to fol­low the band wagon effect and give opinions even on issues they had no facts about.

He said Buratai had been declared guilty even before investigation and trial, adding that the army chief had done no wrong by acquiring properties in Dubai. Osuagwu criticised Ni­gerians who had dragged the Federal Government into the issue, saying their actions constituted a dis­traction to the anti-corrup­tion fight.

The lawyer challenged anyone with proof of the allegations to put same forward and allow the court to decide the matter. According to him, the said property in Dubai purchased by Buratai’s wife a couple of years ago was N48 million only which is even less than what is used by private businessmen and other Nigerians to buy a three bedroom flat in high-brow areas in Abuja.

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Lawyer Urges Buhari To Grant Amnesty To Boko Haram Members

A Lagos-based human rights lawyer, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to grant amnesty to Boko Haram members in the wake of the defeat being inflicted on the insurgents by the Nigerian military.

In a statement issued Sunday, Mr. Adegboruwa said one year after Mr. Buhari declared war on the group, it had become clear that they may not be totally defeated immediately.

“It would seem, from all indications, that it will require a long drawn out war, for which we trust that our president and the military are well equipped and prepared,” Mr. Adegboruwa said.

“It is in the light of this that I am urging the president to seize the momentum of the victory being recorded against the insurgents, to extend an olive branch, to their accredited and authentic representatives, for some reprieve, by way of amnesty.

“After all, Boko Haram once named the president himself as their chief negotiator, in the last dispensation. So, in the same way that the president is engaging the Niger Delta militants, he should extend same to the insurgents, to achieve sustained peace, which will in turn put an end to the deplorable crises being experienced in the various IDP camps and indeed usher in development in the North East region.”

Mr. Adegboruwa’s suggestion came following a reported ambush by the Boko Haram group of over a dozen officers and soldiers of the Nigerian military, last week.

According to the Nigerian army, 19 personnel comprising 16 soldiers and three officers were declared missing after an ambush on troops at Guro Gongon village in Borno State.

“Our hearts and prayers go to the president, the military and indeed the families of these very gallant soldiers, believing firmly that in due course, they will all be rescued alive, by the power and grace of God,” said Mr. Adegboruwa.

 “I join other Nigerians to commend the president, for the victories so far recorded against the terrorists, even though this would have been better celebrated with the rescue of the Chibok girls.

“This has indeed reinforced the view in many quarters, that the president would have been better placed as a minister of defence, in a true democratic environment.”

Credit: PremiumTimes

Lawyer Withdraws Suit Seeking Buhari’s Disqualification For Lack Of Certificate, His Life Allegedly Threatened

Legal practitioner, Mr. Nnamdi Nwokocha-Ahaaiwe, has filed a notice at the Federal High Court in Abuja to discontinue the suit he instituted seeking the disqualification of President Muhammadu Buhari for lack of certificate.

Nwokocha-Ahaaiwe had alleged that Buhari was not qualified to aspire for the office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria because he did not sit for the Cambridge West African School Certificate (WASC) in 1961 as he claimed.

The notice of discontinuance dated June 27 and obtained reads: “Take note that the plaintiff in this originating summons, Nnamdi Nwokocha-Ahaaiwe, hereby discontinues this action.”

Checks revealed that following the withdrawal of the suit from court, the trial judge, Justice Ademola Adeniyi will today sit and accordingly strike out the case.
Though Nwokocha-Ahaaiwe did not give any reason for withdrawing the case from court, It was gathered that it might not be unconnected with alleged threats to his life and members of his family.

In an interview last month, Nwokocha-Ahaaiwe had alleged that there were some subtle threats on him to withdraw the case from court.
He had said: Of course, I am concerned and my family and friends are too; I am not naïve and some subtle threats have already been made. For now it is small comfort that if anything happens to me, even if disguised as an accident or anything, Nigerians will know exactly who is responsible.

“In any case, it was Professor Wole Soyinka, I think, who once said in one of his books that ‘The Man Dies in Him Who Keeps Quiet in The Face of Tyranny’ or something of the sort. Speaking of which, I am amazed at the conspiracy of silence by Nigerians. It is astounding is it not, that in the light of this very apparent rape of our constitution, laws, indeed the very essence of our democracy, all of our civil society advocates and activists have gone deaf and dumb in the face of tyranny.

“All those voluble persons (and I don’t want to name them; they know themselves and Nigerians know them too), who pretend they are activists or keepers of the moral conscience of the nation astonishingly can’t see or appreciate what is happening. This country really misses Chief Gani Fawehinmi; he was the only fearless, credible, true and genuine conscience of the nation, not the pretenders we have today; all the others only make noise when it suits them and their interests but look the other way once they are compromised. None of us today, can tie Gani’s shoe-laces.”

Credit: Thisday

Metuh Admitted In Hospital, Lawyer Tells Court

The National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, Mr. Olisa Metuh, was absent from his ongoing trial before a Federal High Court in Abuja on Tuesday.

Upon an inquiry by the trial judge, Justice Okon Abang, about Metuh’s whereabouts, his lawyer, Dr. Onyechi Ikpeazu (SAN), said the defendant was on a bed rest at the National Hospital, Abuja.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission is prosecuting Metuh and his company, Destra Investments Limited, on charges including fraudulent collection  of N400m from the Office of the National Security Adviser in November 2014 and using same for PDP’s presidential campaign.

Metuh and Destra Investments Limited are also being tried on charges of money laundering involving alleged cash transaction of $2m.

Justice Abang had on Monday adjourned till Tuesday for the continuation of the testimony of the fifth defence witness, Mr. Richard Ihediwa.

After intimating the judge on why Metuh was absent from court, Ikpeazu passed to the court registrar a medical report  signed by a neurosurgeon consultant in the hospital, Dr. O.O Olaleye, confirming that Metuh was in the hospital for a bed rest.

The lawyer, who sought an adjournment of the case, said the situation in section 352(4) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015, in which the judge is allowed to proceed with a criminal trial without the defendant present in court, had not arisen.

The provision of the law provides that the court may proceed with a criminal trial if a defendant already granted bail is absent from court in violation of a court order or in the absence any good reason for the absence of the defendant.

?Destra’s lawyer, Tochukwu Nwugbufor (SAN), had supported the request for adjournment insisting that by virtue of the provisions of section 352(4) of the ACJ Act, the court could never proceed with the trial in Metuh’s absence.

Prosecuting counsel, Mr. Sylvanus Tahir, also did not oppose the application for adjournment but also referred the court to section 266(a) and (b) of the ACJ Act which makes it mandatory for a defendant to be present in court whenever his trial comes up.

The judge, in a ruling, which he delivered after entertaining the submission of parties to the case, noted that though Metuh had good reason to be absent from court, the medical report was unhelpful, as it failed to indicate the period which the bed rest would last.

The judge said the omission of the period for the bed rest in the medical report had left doubt to whether the report was issued in bad faith.

The judge conceded to the request for adjournment and fixed May 30 for continuation of trial.

Justice Abang also fixed Wednesday (tomorrow) for ruling on an application by Metuh seeking the release of his passport to enable him travel to the United Kingdom for medical treatment.

Lawyer Withdraws Suit Seeking Metuh’s Release From EFCC’s Custody

Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, a Lagos-based lawyer, has announced the withdrawal of a suit he instituted against the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) seeking the release of the national publicity secretary of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Olisa Metuh, from the custody of the Commission.

Adegboruwa, on Monday, filed the suit before the Federal High Court, Lagos, alleging that Metuh’s fundamental rights have been violated.

Metuh was arrested by the operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on January 5, 2016, in his house in Abuja and he has been kept in custody ever since, without access to his family, lawyers or doctors.

In the suit filed against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Attorney-General of the Federation, Adegboruwa contended that under Section 35 of the 1999 Constitution, the EFCC had exceeded the maximum time allowed by law for detention of a citizen, without trial in any court.

Credit: Guardian

Apology To Buhari: Kanu’s Family, Lawyer, IPOB, Dismiss Report As Big Lie

The father of the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, and the traditional ruler of Afaraukwu autonomous community, His Royal Majesty Eze Israel Kanu has dismissed the report that his son has apologised to President Muhammadu Buhari for calling him a terrorist and a pedophile. Also, Mr. Vincent Obetta, the lawyer to the detained IPOB leader, on Wednesday, said it was impossible that the Radio Biafra director tendered an apology to President Buhari.

The IPOB on the other hand on Wednesday also refuted media reports that its detained leader, and director of its radio had apologised to President Buhari. Kanu’s father described the alleged apology as the handiwork of the enemies of the struggles for Biafran emancipation, saying that his son has never regretted his actions for the liberation of his marginalized people. Eze Kanu said this in Umuahia, the Abia State capital, on Wednesday, adding that his son has no reason to apoligise to anybody as he was fighting a just cause and has not has violated any law.

The monarch added that he was not surprised at such fabrications and reiterated his son’s resolve to not give up the fight for a sovereign state of Biafra particularly as it was the wish of the people. He restated his unwavering support for his son and advised those in authority to stop trying to project him in bad light through the internet even as he warned media houses against collaborating with the Federal Government to portray his son in a bad light and ultimately frustrate the agitation for independent Biafra.

He maintained that such efforts will fail. The traditional ruler used the opportunity to renew his appeal to President Buhari to free his son, insisting that his son has done nothing to warrant his unlawful detention even against the judgments of courts of competent jurisdiction. Meanwhile, Mr. Vincent Obetta, lawyer to the IPOB leader, while denying that Kanu apologised to President Buhari, said reports of the IPOB leader’s apology were proof that government was trying to use all instruments at its disposal to “puncture” the campaign for the actualization of Biafra. “The alleged apology is not true. The government is using every instrument to puncture what we are doing,” he said.

Similarly, the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra [IPOB] has refuted media reports that its detained leader, and director of its radio had apologised to President Buhari for allegedly referring to him as a terrorist. IPOB in a press statement issued in Umuahia, dismissed the media report as a blatant lie and cheap propaganda by its sponsors to create the wrong impression that Kanu is backing out of the Biafran project. The statement which was signed by its spokesman, Emma Powerful, accused the Federal Government of planting the said report to dampen the morals of Kanu’s followers and other Biafran agitators.

The IPOB spokesman said: “It is an insult to the entire Biafran Republic for anyone to expect any apology from Kanu over his activities towards facilitating Biafra’s autonomy”. The group also accused the media outfit which carried the said report of serving as a propaganda machinery of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC)-led Federal Government to cause disaffection among Biafrans.

Credit: DailyTimes

Estate Manager Converts Dead Man’s N33.7m & Various Properties To His In Lagos

A trustee to the estate of the late Mr. Abiodun Toma Ikomi, Adebayo Shogeyinbo has been arraigned before a Lagos Magistrates’ court for allegedly converting the monies and properties of the deceased, comprising about N33.7m, five cars, 97 shops, buildings and parcels of land to his personal use.

The accused was arrested by the operatives of the Police Special Fraud Unit, (PSFU), Milverton Road, Ikoyi, Lagos, western Nigeria. And after investigation by SP Kalayalo and his team, the accused, a resident of Igbosere Road, Lagos Island, was arraigned before an Igbosere magistrates’ court on a three-count charge of felony to wit, fraudulent conversion of monies and properties of the
late Mr. Abiodun Toma Ikomi to his personal use.

Police prosecutor, Inspector Amedu Adoga informed the court in charge No. N/35/2015 that the accused, was arrested following a complaint by the family of the late Ikomi that the accused, who is their late father’s estate trustee converted their father’s monies and properties to his personal use and sold others out without the consent of the family.

Amedu told the court that the accused between November 2000 and October, 2013 converted the sum of N10m at Eko International Bank Plc, N3.7m at Union Bank of Nigeria Plc, Garki, Abuja Branch, N20m gratuity and benefits domiciled at First Bank of Nigeria Plc, Sapele, Delta State Branch, all properties of the deceased to his personal use and neglected the family of the deceased.

He said the accused also converted five cars and sold 97 shops at Iweju International Market, Iyana-Iba, Ojo, Lagos, Duplex building at Ugbiyi GRA, Sapele, Delta State, vacant parcel of land at Ugbiyi GRA, Sapele, Delta State, two buildings at Plot 19, Block X11 Gwagwalada, FCT, Abuja, plot No. M4-24L at Delta Steel, 1000 priority housing scheme, Ovian, Aladja, Delta State and a building at B Plot 72, Ikomi Street, Lekki Phase 1, Lagos, properties of the deceased to his personal use.

Amedu said the accused also concealed the age of Tosan Toma Ikomi with the intention to sell the property at Ugbiyi GRA, Sapele, Delta State willed to Tosan Toma Ikomi by his late father.

Amedu noted that the offences the accused committed are punishable under sections 285(9) (b), 332 (1) and 324 (2) (3) of the criminal law of Lagos State, 2011.

The accused denied the police allegations in the open court, and magistrate Mrs. O.G. Oghre admitted the accused to bail in the sum of N500,000 with two sureties in like sum.

Oghre adjourned the case till 4 December, 2015 for mention, while the defendant was taken to Ikoyi Prison, Lagos pending when he will fulfill his bail conditions.

Source: PM News


Dokpesi’s Lawyer Speaks On EFCC Probe, N2.1bn Arms Money Scandal

Mike Ozekhome, the lawyer to Raymond Dokpesi, founder of Daar Communications, Raymond Dokpesi, has said he was not aware his client received money from the office of the former National Security Adviser, NSA, Sambo Dasuki.

Mr. Ozekhome also said reports that Mr. Dokpesi was arrested by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission ,EFCC, over the alleged payment, were not correct because Mr. Dokpesi went on his own to the anti-graft agency after receiving a call from its chairman.

“I am not aware the chief collected any money,” he said, referring to Mr. Dokpesi.

“The chief called me earlier in the afternoon to say he received a call from the chairman of the EFCC wanting to see him and I sent one of my lawyers to accompany him. He was not arrested by any group of operatives,” he said.

Mr. Ozekhome said prior to Tuesday’s invitation of Mr. Dokpesi, there was no formal communication from the EFCC to him.

“What I know is that the EFCC wrote to Daar Holdings asking for a list of directors and whether it has done any business or contract with the office of the NSA in the past and how much was involved.

“We wrote them a reply to say Daar did not do any contract with the office of the NSA and we are ready to give them all the information they need,” he said.

The EFCC has arrested a number of individuals indicted by a presidential investigations committee into arms procurement by the Goodluck Jonathan administration.

Credit: PremiumTimes

Diezani’s Lawyer Implies Dele Momodu’s Interview Was For Private Consumption, Says Family Is Upset

Oscar Onwudiwe, Mrs. Alison-Madueke’s Nigerian lawyer, in an interview with SaharaReporters, asserted that the ex-minister never intended or authorized anything from her meeting with Dele Momodu to be broadcast to the public.

According to Mr. Onwudiwe’s account, Mr. Momodu, publisher of The Boss magazine, “met (with Diezani) on a personal visit with the family.” He added that Mr. Momodu and the family had enjoyed a good relationship in the past.

Even so, Mr. Onwudiwe insisted that no permission was ever granted to have Mrs. Alison-Madueke’s photo taken. He stated that the ex-minister’s family became “very upset” about what has transpired after the meeting between Mr. Momodu and the former minister. The lawyer disclosed that Mrs. Alison-Madueke and her family were not ready for her to make public statements yet.

When asked why Mrs. Alison-Madueke was looking into the camera, if she did not did not give permission to have her photo taken, Mr. Onwudiwe was unable to provide an answer.

Credit: SaharaReporters

Lagos Lawyer In Street Fight Over Late Father’s Property, Blinds Sister In The Process

A woman, Mrs. Ifeoluwa Oluwaloseyitan (nee Alalade), has lost her right eye after she was allegedly attacked with a plank by her step-brother Mr. Olusegun Alalade, over their late father’s estate on Ladipo Oluwole Avenue, off Adeniyi Jones, Ikeja, Lagos.

Olusegun, who is a lawyer and his brother, Babasanjo Alalade, were said to have led some hoodlums to their father’s estate on Sunday, November 1, wielding cutlasses, among other weapons.

Punch Metro learnt that Ifeoluwa, her husband, Pastor Abraham Oluwaloseyitan; and her two elder brothers – Tunde and Kolawole – had been to the estate to inspect the painters working on one of the apartments therein.

Punch Metro gathered that Kolawole, who works in Abuja, had embarked on the renovation of the flat for him to be staying there whenever he came to Lagos.

Our correspondent learnt that they were about to leave the premises when the lawyer and his accomplices unleashed terror on them. Apart from the woman, the pastor was slashed in the head with a machete while Kolawole and others were also injured. But Tunde escaped unhurt.

It was learnt that a surgical operation was done on Ifeoluwa on Thursday to prevent the ‘ruptured’ eye from being infected.

One of the doctors treating her at the Lagos State University Hospital where she was admitted to confirmed to our correspondent shortly before the operation that the eye had become blind.

He said, “The trauma has ruptured the eye. The surgery we want to do is just to prevent infections. But medically, she can’t see with the eye.”

Narrating the incident to our correspondent, Ifeoluwa said Olusegun beat her severely and left her for dead.

She said, “It all started on Saturday when his younger brother, Babasanjo, used a machete to inflict wounds on a step-brother, Shola, in the palm inside our father’s estate. Babasanjo was arrested by the police from Man Centre Police Station but was released that same day. The lawyer was boasting before the policemen that he would deal with all of us.

“On Sunday, we went to the property to see the painters working on it. I was reading a magazine beside the gate when I saw the painters rushing out. I was approaching them to know what was wrong when Olusegun smashed a big plank on my forehead. He was hitting me, shouting ‘I will kill all of you’. He stopped when I pretended I was dead.”

Her husband, Pastor Abraham, said he wanted to rescue his wife when Babasanjo attacked him with a cutlass.

He said, “I moved her away from them (Olusegun and Babasanjo). Suddenly, they started clubbing me in the head. It was when two policemen came that they stopped beating me. Between Sunday evening and today (Thursday), I have spent over N200, 000 on her treatment alone. She is blind in one eye and her nose is affected too.”

Kolawole, one of Ifeoluwa’s step-brothers, accused the police of not handling the matter properly.

He said, “I am going to petition the Inspector-General of Police on this matter. Why would they release persons who attempted to kill? We are not happy with the way the matter is being handled by the police. It was because Babasanjo was released on Saturday that he was able to attack us on Sunday.”

Another brother, Tunde, said Olusegun had been ‘fraudulently’ administering their father’s property within and outside the state since he died in 2008, without giving them any share of the income.

But the lawyer denied attacking the victims. He said the apartment was under lock and key when Kolawole gained entry into it without his consent.

He said, “Tunde’s claims are not true. They were the ones that attacked me and I was injured in the head. I don’t know about the hoodlums and how Ifeoluwa got injured.

“They have been warned by the police to keep away from the estate. I just ejected a tenant from that place last month and locked the room. What was their mission on that premises on a Sunday? After all, they have sued me and my sibling.”

When contacted on the phone, Babasanjo simply told our correspondent that the squabble over the property “is already in court.”

One of the painters, Ayoola Henry, described the attack as ‘bloody’ saying he witnessed the incident from where he hid.

He said, “We were done with our work when Mr. Babasanjo, the lawyer and some people came with weapons and started attacking everybody. I ran to a corner but my partner was slightly injured in the leg. The lawyer was saying ‘I will kill everybody’. I am not sure whether it was the lawyer or Babasanjo that injured the woman (Ifeoluwa) because I was in shock.”

The Lagos State Police spokesperson, DSP Joe Offor, said he had yet to be briefed on the matter.

He said, “The officer in charge of the case is receiving treatment in a hospital. I will get back to you.”

Offor, however, had yet to do so as of press time.

Probe Saraki’s Lawyer For Walking Out On CCT, SERAP tells NBA

Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has asked the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to “urgently investigate the conduct of lawyers to the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, for walking out on the Code of Conduct Tribunal on Thursday.

The tribunal had refused their application for stay of proceedings in the asset falsification trial against the Senate President.

SERAP said that “It is the role of Sakari’s lawyers to serve their client’s best interests but in doing so they should not act in a manner that would put the administration of justice and the society’s confidence in the judicial system and the fight against corruption at risk.”
In a statement Thursday by SERAP executive director, Adetokunbo Mumuni, the organisation said that, “walking out on the Code of Conduct Tribunal for simply and correctly applying section 305(e) of the newly enacted Administration of Criminal Justice Act is disrespectful.

“SERAP believes that a lawyer’s duty to the court is a fundamental obligation that defines a lawyer’s role within the adversarial system. Lawyers should at all times act to promote the rule of law and the public’s confidence in the administration of justice and not to be seen to undermine it or facilitate an infringement of the law.

“As we have seen many times, without the rule of law, the rule of the jungle takes hold and the economically and socially vulnerable fall victim to the strong and nobody is safe. The rule of law also creates a disincentive for would-be corrupt officials.

“Senior lawyers especially have a responsibility to act as the guardians of the rule of law by contributing to a strong judicial and legal system which is crucial to a well-functioning democracy and which in turn is necessary to satisfactorily prevent and combat years of official corruption in the country.
“If at all Saraki’s lawyers are dissatisfied with the ruling of the Tribunal, there are laid down processes that they should have followed to demonstrate their role as officers in the temple of justice rather than granting media interviews and literally abusing the Tribunal.

“We urge the NBA to urgently investigate what exactly happened and to punish any professional misconduct that may have occurred.”



Credit : Daily Post

Police Arraign Female Lawyer For Diverting Company’s N50m

The police in Lagos have arraigned a former director of IT Bureau De Change Limited, Mrs. Ifeyinwa Morah, before an Apapa Magsitrates’ Court for allegedly diverting N50m owned by the firm into a private account.

PUNCH Metro learnt that Morah, who is also a lawyer, headed the company’s Business Development till June 2015 when she was relieved of the position.
She was said to have withdrawn the money from the Fidelity Bank account used by the company on June 18 and deposited same to a Zenith Bank account given as 1000845723. It was learnt that the money had yet to be recovered from the suspect.
The police said the 40-year-old lawyer upon her resignation, left with the company’s Certificate of
Incorporation, Memorandum and Articles of Association, forms on particulars of directors, statement of share capital, operational licence, among others.

She was subsequently arrested and charged on two counts bordering on fraud to which she pleaded not guilty.
The charges read, “That you, Ifeyinwa Morah, on June 18, 2015 at Apapa in the Apapa Magisterial District, having resigned your appointment with IT Bureau De Change (Intl) Limited on June 15 as a director, stole the sum of N50m from the company by transferring same from the company’s account number: 4010765293 with Fidelity Bank Plc to Zenith Bank Plc account 1000845723 maintained by one Francis Ogboro.

“That you, on the same date, time and place in the aforementioned magisterial district did unlawfully remove the company’s Certificate of Incorporation, original Memorandum and Articles of Association, Form CAC (particulars of directors), operational licence in a manner likely to interfere with the usage and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 338 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2011.”

The accused was first arraigned on September 9, 2015 and was granted bail in the sum of N10m with two sureties in like sum by the presiding magistrate Mr. T. Abolarinwa.

Abolarinwa added that “Evidence of gainful employment must be provided by the sureties and one of them must be a blood relation. The surety must own a property worth N50m and it must be within a prime area within Lagos State. The sureties’ statements of account and their addresses must be verified by the prosecutor.”
The defence counsel last Thursday, when the hearing of the case was to commence, asked the court for adjournment on the grounds that she had just been told to take over the matter, adding that she needed time to prepare her defence.

The magistrate granted her request and adjourned the matter till January 20 and 27, 2016 for hearing on the matter.

Source: Punch

British Lawyer & Wife Found Hacked To Death At Home

A British Lawyer and his wife suffered horrific injuries to their heads, arms and throat at their home in Tobago where they had lived for 16 years before they eventually waved the earth bye.

Mr Wheeler, 73 and Mrs wheeler, 67 were both killed in a suspected robbery at home, the police have said.

Their gardener found Mrs Wheeler unresponsive on the lawn with her throat cut, while Mr Wheeler was later discovered by police face down in a pool of blood with wounds to both arms and the back of the head. A reward of £10,218 is being offered for anyone with credible information.

Stevie Wonder Files Lawsuit Claiming Late Lawyer Took Advantage Of His Blindness

Stevie Wonder filed a lawsuit on Thursday claiming his lawyer who died in 2011 duped him into signing a ‘forever’ royalties contract.

The 65-year-old music legend claimed that his longtime lawyer Johanan Vigoda took advantage of a blind man, according to an article on Thursday by TMZ.

Wonder in his lawsuit claimed that he was unaware of a clause in the contract that he signed at age 21 granting six percent of royalties ‘forever’ to Vigoda and his heirs.

Royalty lawsuit: Stevie Wonder, shown on Wednesday in San Francisco, has filed a lawsuit against his late lawyer over never-ending royalty payments

Royalty lawsuit: Stevie Wonder, shown on Wednesday in San Francisco, has filed a lawsuit against his late lawyer over never-ending royalty payments

Vigoda died aged 82 in November 2011 in Reno, Nevada after a short battle with pancreatic cancer.

After his death Wonder’s record company continued to make the royalty payments to Vigoda’s widow Susan Strack and Wonder claimed in his lawsuit that he didn’t realize the payments were being made until 2013.

Lawyer Arrested For Defrauding FG Of N928 Million

The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has said it arrested a lawyer, Mr Adeola Adeyanju, for allegedly defrauding the Federal Government of N928 million.

The commission made the disclosure on Tuesday in Lagos in its recent in-house news bulletin.

The bulletin said that the suspect allegedly forged the payment mandate of the Ministry of Environment.

The commission, according to the bulletin, alleged that the suspect moved the said amount from First City Monument Bank where the money had been domiciled with his Zenith Bank’s personal account.

“On the same day the money hit his account, he again moved it to a Bureau de Change’s account where the money was converted and paid to him in dollars,’’ it said.

Read Morethenationonlineng

Lawyer Sues Buhari Over Appointments

An Abuja-based lawyer, Dim-Udebuani Marcel, has sued President Muhammadu Buhari over recent appointments made by the president.

In a suit filed on August 31, with number FHC/ABJ/CS/732/2015, Mr. Marcel accused the president of marginalizing the South East geopolitical zone, which has not received any appointment from the Buhari government yet.

The president and the Federal Character Commission are joined as defendants.

Mr. Marcel’s counsel, Jude Ifesemen, said the plaintiff wants the court to determine whether the 25 important appointments made by President Buhari were done against the spirit of constitutionally guaranteed federal character.

The court will decide “whether the exclusion of South East geo-political zone in the 25 appointments made so far by the 1st defendant is unconstitutional and divisive?” Mr. Marcel said.

Read More: premiumtimesng

Lawyer Threatens To Sue Buhari Over Appointment Of Ministers

A Kaduna-based lawyer, Sunny Akanni, has threatened to challenge President Muhammadu Buhari in court if he failed to appoint ministers from each of the 36 states of the federation as stated in the Constitution.

He said it would amount to gross violation of the Nigerian constitution if the President failed to appoint ministers to represent each state of the federation.

According to him, the constitution is so clear on ministerial appointments by the President, wondering why the President would be contemplating reducing the number of ministers in order to cut cost.

Read More: punchng

Kashamu Hid In Toilet For 6 Days During NDLEA Raid- Lawyer

A Senator-elect, Buruji Kashamu, wanted by the United States government for alleged drug offences, hid in his apartment’s toilet in Lagos for six days as Nigerian anti-narcotic agents raided his home and placed him under house arrest two weeks ago, his lawyer said Thursday.

The lawyer, Ajibola Oluyede, told a federal court in Lagos that Mr. Kashamu remained in hiding while 20 masked operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency took over his bedroom.

Mr. Oluyede said despite an earlier ruling of the court that the NDLEA lift its siege on Mr. Kashamu’s home, the agency only withdrew its personnel after he was compelled to sign an undertaking.

‘’The only reason they left was because I signed an undertaking,” Mr. Oluyede said. “My client was in a toilet for six days with 20 masked armed men in his bedroom. So, I signed the undertaking before they left. They should not claim to have obeyed the order of the court.”

Mr. Kashamu’s lawyer urged the court to nullify any warrant of arrest that might have been obtained by the NDLEA from any source in an attempt to extradite his client.

The judge, Ibrahim Bubba, ?ordered the Attorney General of Nigeria, the NDLEA not to take any further action to extradite Mr. Kashamu to the United States, until the proceedings before him are determined.

Repeating his earlier orders, Justice Buba said ‘’at the expense of being repetitive, the defendants who are alleged contemnor are once again ordered not to do anything that will undermine the suit before the court. It is the duty of all parties to obey the order of court’’.

‘’Therefore, counsel should note that the motion to set aside the orders of court and the main application has not been argued. So the court has to adjourn this matter in order for parties to be served appropriately so that justice can be done,” he stated.

He said the judgment of a court of competent jurisdiction subsists until they are set aside.

He said whether the orders were made rightly or wrongly, parties are bound by that order of the court no matter how perverse the order may seem to be.
Justice Buba therefore adjourned the suit to June 19 for hearing of contempt proceedings against the former Attorney General of the Federation, Mohammed Adoke, and the NDLEA Chairman, Ahmadu Giade.


Nyanya Bombing Alleged Mastermind’s N100m Demand a Big Joke Says FG

The Federal Government, yesterday, described the N100million demand by Aminu Sadiq Ogwuche, the alleged mastermind of the April 14 bomb blast that killed over 75 persons and wounded 100 others at a crowded motor park in Nyanya Abuja, as a big joke.

Consequently, the government sought an outright dismissal of the fundamental right enforcement proceeding that was initiated before the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court by Ogwuche.

Ogwuche had in the application he filed through his lawyer Mr. Ahmed Raji, SAN , urged the court to compel the Federal Government to pay him N100m as compensation for his continued detention in the custody of the Department of State Security, DSS, over his alleged complicity in the bombing incident.

He told the court that he has been in detention since July 15, 2014, when he was arrested in Khartoum, Sudan and extradited to Nigeria through the help of the Interpol, saying the government has neither arraigned nor filed a valid charge against him.

Ogwuche accused the Nigerian government of violating his fundamental human rights as enshrined in section 34, 35, 36, 41 and 43 of the 1999 Constitution, as amended, as well as Articles 2, 6, 7(1) of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Right (Ratification& Enforcement Act).

Aside asking for damages against the government, Ogwuche further urged the court to invoke it’s powers and order his release from detention pending whenever the government is ready to conduct his trial. His application was further anchored on Order 2, Rule (1),(2),(3) of the Fundamental Enforcement Procedure Rule.

Meantime, the government yesterday described Ogwuche’s contention as arrant balderdash, saying he is under lawful custody following his role in the Nyanya mayhem. DSS lawyer Mr Clifford Osagie also drew the attention of the court to the fact that Ogwuche has been allowed to have access to his lawyers, family members and adequate medical attention.

Osagie argued that the right to liberty accorded to the accused person under section 35(1) was not absolute, even as he adduced two exhibits (SS-2 and SS-3) to show why Ogwuche should not be allowed to regain his freedom yet.

Credit: Vanguard Nigeria

Oscar Pistorius ‘has no Money’ says Lawyer

Pistorius sobbed as defence lawyer Barry Roux said that the athlete no longer had any money after the long trial, which has lasted over seven months. “He is not only broke but he is broken,” he said. “He’s a first offender. What has happened to this man? He was on the rise,” Mr Roux added.

The lawyer asked Judge Masipa to consider the South African principle of “ubuntu”, roughly translated as kindness towards others, in her sentencing. The prosecution is expected to present its closing argument later on Friday.

Pistorius was convicted of culpable homicide last month after shooting dead his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp last year, but was cleared of murder. Judge Thokozile Masipa is expected to deliver her sentence on Tuesday.

He faces up to 15 years in jail, but the judge may choose a suspended sentence or impose a fine instead. The sentencing hearing, which began on Monday, has seen the prosecution push for the maximum custodial sentence.