FG Hires Top International Criminal Court Prosecutor Against Indicted Supreme Court Chiefs- Report

Some of the indicted officials of the Supreme Court fingered to have collected money through fraudulent means are in serious trouble as the Federal Government hires a top international criminal prosecutor. The Federal Government has hired a former International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor, Charles Adeogun-Philips, to lead its team of lawyers to prosecute the Supreme Court Registrar and others for alleged N2.2b fraud.
 The arraignment of the three senior officials of the apex court was stalled by Justice Abba Mohammed of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court in Jabi, Abuja because one of the Supreme Court officials, Muhammed Sharif, was absent.
The Federal Government on November 3 filed a nine-count charge against Chief Registrar Ahmed Saleh, Sharif and Rilwanu Lawal (who are both officials of the court’s Account Department).
The officials were charged with conspiracy and criminal breach of trust for allegedly diverting N2.2billion belonging to the apex court and receiving gratification as public officers. The three officials are also accused of receiving N74.4m gratification from Willysdave Ltd., Welcon Nig. Ltd., Dean Musa Nig. Ltd., Ababia Ventures Ltd. and MBR Computers Ltd. between 2009 and 2016.
On November 8, Justice Mohammed granted a request by prosecution lawyer Hajara Yusuf for time to produce the three defendants in court for arraignment, following which the court adjourned till November 17 for arraignment.
Saleh and Lawal were in court. Sharif was absent. Garba Tetengi (SAN), who announced appearance for Sharif, said he was ill and was on admission at the hospital. He sought an adjournment, which other defence lawyers – Abdulhakeem Mustapha – SAN – (for Saleh) and I.K Sanusi – SAN (for Lawal) did not object.
The Director of Public Prosecutions of the Federation (DPPF), Mohammed Umar, who led the prosecution team, later yielded proceedings to Adeogun-Philips, who spoke for the prosecution.
Umar said the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), had in exercising his powers under Section 174(1) of the Constitution, elected to engage an international lawyer to conduct prosecution in the case.
Adeogun-Philips said he was unhappy that Tetengi could not provide any document to show that Sharif was on admission in the hospital. Justice Mohammed rescheduled the arraignment for December 15.

Syria, Nuclear Arms & Refugees Top UN Assembly Agenda

World leaders are arriving at the United Nations headquarters for an annual confab with hopes of addressing everything from superbugs to climate change and a global anti-poverty drive that is already faltering in its first year.

Presidents, diplomats and their delegations must also broach impromptu items, such as North Korea’s recent nuclear test. A US air raid that allegedly killed at least 62 Syrian government soldiers on Saturday threatens a fragile truce in that country and sparked fresh rows at the UN.

On top of that, the United States, Russia, China and other UN heavyweights must see beyond their differences and agree on who will run the world body once the incumbent, Ban Ki-moon, steps down at the end of the year.

On Monday, the UN will host a summit for refugees and migrants that may have already failed – countries refused to commit themselves to a UN target of resettling 10 percent of refugees each year.

The outcome is a “watered-down version of what we had hoped for”, Erol Kekic, from the refugee aid group Church World Service, told Al Jazeera, adding that denying hope to the world’s 21 million refugees was “irresponsible and frankly dangerous”.

A separate meeting on refugees, to be hosted by US President Barack Obama on Tuesday, will probably gain more traction, not least because any leader showing up must come bearing gifts. Guests will be giving cash, letting more refugees into their countries or helping them find jobs.

Obama’s presence raises a question all of its own. His internationalism has buoyed UN meetings over the past eight years, but he leaves office in January and US voters have yet to decide who will replace him.

Read More: aljazeera

 

Top Pope Aide Investigated For Australia Child Sex Abuse- Report

Vatican finance chief George Pell is being investigated by Australian police over child sexual abuse allegations, a report by the national broadcaster said Thursday, as the leading Catholic cleric denounced the claims as “totally untrue”.

The new allegations against Pell being probed by police in Victoria State span two decades, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation reported, and came just months after the cardinal admitted he “mucked up” in dealing with paedophile priests in the state. When he was the Catholic Archbishop of Sydney in 2002 Pell was accused of historic sex abuse claims but was later cleared of any wrongdoing.

The ABC said it had obtained eight police statements from complainants, witnesses and family members helping the police investigation. The report included claims Pell touched two boys inappropriately in a pool in the late 1970s. But the 75-year-old strongly denied the allegations in a statement to the ABC, saying “claims that he has sexually abused anyone, in any place, at any time in his life are totally untrue and completely wrong”.

A Victoria Police spokeswoman told AFP they would not be making any comments. The national Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse is ongoing in Australia and was established after a decade of growing pressure to investigate widespread allegations of paedophilia.

The police investigation is part of a wider probe into complaints that emerge out of the royal commission. The commission’s hearings are covering harrowing allegations of child abuse involving places of worship, orphanages, community groups and schools.

Pell previously told the commission he was not aware of offences that had occurred in Victoria, where paedophile priests abused dozens of children in the 1970s and 1980s.

Credit: Vanguard

FG Sacks Top Civil Servants For Employment Racketeering

Credit: NationalMirror

Chad Military Arrests Top Boko Haram Leader

A Chadian Public Prosecutor, Alghassim Khamis, has said that one of the key Boko Haram leaders, Baana Fanay, who has been coordinating trafficking of weapons in Nigeria, Cameroon and Chad was arrested on Sunday in N’Djamena.

“Fanay, alias Mahamat Moustapha, was arrested by security forces after a fierce resistance,” Khamis said.
He said Fanay, who was arrested with two other terrorists, was responsible for the purchase of weapons and recruitment of fighters for Boko Haram.

The prosecutor said that a search in the suspect’s house led to the seizure of different weapons and documents written in Arabic by Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, targeting the sect’s recruits.

He said the arrest also led investigators to discover the location of seven other terrorists hiding in a house in Diguel, a Dinguessou suburb, on the periphery of N’Djamena.

Read More:  leadership