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Ibori’s £4.2m Loot Should Be Returned To Delta State, Falana Counters Malami |The Republican News

Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana

by Ayodele Oluwafemi

Femi Falana, a senior advocate of Nigeria (SAN), says the loot recovered from James Ibori, former governor of Delta, should be returned to the source, which is the state.

Falana stated this when he featured on a Channels Television programme on Wednesday.

Commenting on the position of Abubakar Malami, attorney-general of the federation, who had said the recovered loot will be channelled into federal projects, Falana said the money should go to Delta, since it was meant for the development of the state.

On Tuesday, the United Kingdom made a commitment to return £4.2 million loot recovered from Ibori to the federal government.

Catriona Laing, British high commissioner to Nigeria, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to that effect with Malami.

But speaking on Wednesday, Falana argued that since the Ibori loot in question left the coffers of Delta state, the federal government has no locus standi to decide how the recovered money is spent.

“Having acknowledged the role of the federal government, the fund has to return to the source. Factually, between 1999 and 2003, the Delta state government like other state governments in Nigeria received its statutory allocation on a monthly basis and paid same into the account of the government. From that account, some amount was alleged to have been diverted and taken to the United Kingdom,” he said.


“As the honourable attorney-general had said, the money is over £100 million. What has been released now is the first tranche of £4.2 million. Since the money left the coffers of the Delta state government, it has to be returned once this fund is recovered.

“The federal government has no locus standi with respect to how the money is spent. That is left for the people of Delta state to monitor the government of that state to ensure that the fund is not relooted.

“In fact, the memorandum of understanding referred to by the attorney-general signed in London, smacks of colonialism. Britain cannot decide on how recovered loot should be spent.

“What I expect the attorney-general or the federal government — in the circumstance — is to collaborate with the Delta state government to ensure that the banks that housed the looted wealth of Delta state or the banks involved, are made to pay collosal damages and interests for denying the people of Delta state the opportunity to use the money for development.”

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Re-arrest Of Sowore Inside Court: NBA, Femi Falana Are Also Culpable —Charles Ogbu |The Republican News

I find the Department of State Security (DSS) continued display of primitive barbarism with regards to Omoyele Sowore’s case criminally disgusting. What we saw in the trending video is nothing but Executive brigandage on the part of the DSS. I feel nothing but disdainful contempt for the Commander-In-Chief who is perpetrating this banditry on an innocent citizen right inside the court of Law.

But, I feel more disdain for Barrister Femi Falana and the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) for playing a very active role in nurturing and emboldening this monstrous tyranny. Those two (Falana and the NBA) are part of the Arsonists of this inferno which is currently consuming the whole country. And they must never be allowed to deceive anyone that they are the Fire fighters because they are not.

Let’s face it, President Buhari didn’t start destroying our judiciary/democracy two days ago. He started it a long time ago and only a man who lies for a living will pretend not to know this. First, he started disobeying court orders with impunity with the NBA doing nothing. From there, he completed the evil job on October 2016 when he used this same DSS to abduct Supreme Court justices and judges of the lower courts IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT under the guise of fighting corruption. Is the DSS an anti-graft agency? And just before the 2019 election, he buried the judiciary and by extension, the rule of law and democracy when he SINGLE-HANDEDLY removed a sitting Chief Justice Walter Onnoghen using a mere exparte order fraudulently granted by the Code of Conduct Tribunal directly under the presidency and receiving orders straight from same.

Judging from Buhari’s past as a tyrant with a very horrible undemocratic records, Femi Falana and the NBA ought to have seen the sign quite earlier. As a lawyer and a body of lawyers equipped with the mental capacity for critical thinking and discernment, they should have known that a Buhari who publicly and repeatedly absolved Sani Abacha of any corruption charge, withdrew Danjuma Goje’s 25billion naira corruption case with the EFCC, re-appoint his Chief of staff, Abba Kyari despite serious corruption allegation hanging over his neck etc WAS NOT CAPABLE OF RECOGNIZING CORRUPTION NOT TO TALK OF FIGHTING IT. And as such, couldn’t have violated all known rules guiding separation of powers in a democracy the way he did in Onnoghen’s case for any altruistic reason.

But, shockingly, Falana not only supported Buhari on Onnoghen but was all over the T.V defending the head of the executive arm of government unilaterally and vindictively removing the head of another separate arm of government. In fact, during the last NBA conference, the same Falana was busy countering Mike Ozeikhome’s attempt to rally the NBA in defense of the sanctity of the judiciary. He was there shouting that Onnoghen was corrupt and as such, the NBA couldn’t possibly rally round a man facing corruption charges. But he forgot that it wasn’t really about Onnoghen as a person but about making a bold statement that the judiciary is a separate arm of government whose head should not be unilaterally removed by an over-bearing head of the Executive.

The rest, they say, is history.

Here we are!

So why is both Falana and the NBA now expressing orgasmic outrage over the DSS invasion of justice Ijeoma Ojukwu’s court in a violent bid to re-arrest citizen Sowore as though the Buhari govt became lawless just two days ago???

I think there is an important lesson to learn from this current reign of terror:

Tyrants always start by testing their limit. Once they take one tyrannical step, they listen and watch for people’s reactions. And once notable people like Falana and bodies like the NBA support their tyranny, they enter the next level. From there, they continue nonstop until they find their way home because make no mistake, tyranny always find its way home.

Democracy is nothing without due processes and procedures. And it can’t exist without an Independent judiciary and a free Press (none of which we have at the moment). If some Tyrant masquerading as a democrat violates a laid down process under the guise of fighting corruption, supporting that Tyrant while chanting “corruption” like some robot simply because you don’t like the face of his current victim is foolishness. You should look beyond what the Tyrant is saying and try to see what he’s leaving unsaid but which his body language and past record is pointing at. Most importantly, and this is for those against Sowore for his role in bringing Buhari, please guys, we have a common enemy and existential threat here, and it is certainly not Sowore. If we don’t put 2015 behind us, we might not make it through the remaining part of this very loooooooong night filled with terror.

#ShameOnTheDssAndAllTheirSupporters

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Fayose Asks FG To Investigate Falana Over Abuja N1bn Property |RN

fayose-falana-trade-words-over-abuja-n1bn-property

Gov. Ayodele Fayose, Mr Femi Falana (SAN)

Kamarudeen Ogundele and Oladimeji Ramon

The Governor of Ekiti State, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, has criticised human rights lawyer, Mr. Femi Falana (SAN), over the allegation by the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN), linking the lawyer to a N1bn property on Gana Street, Maitama, Abuja.

Fayose said it was embarrassing, shameful, disgraceful that a man of Falana’s standing, reputed to be a human rights activist, friend of the masses, crusader of justice and defender of democracy, could be linked to such a scandal.

The embattled former chairman of the defunct Pension Reform Task Team, Abdulrasheed Maina, had accused Falana of buying the building which was one of the properties he helped to seize from suspected pension thieves and handed over to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.

Malami had while testifying before the National Assembly last week, echoed the allegation, saying the property was sold to a ‘Lagos lawyer.’

Reacting in a statement on Monday, Fayose said it was sad and shameful that Falana could be “cited in such an odious, obscene, and offensive conduct.”

He said it was not surprising that Falana had taken it upon himself to always defend the EFCC, even when the anti-graft agency acted lawlessly, since the lawyer was allegedly benefitting from the EFCC.

Fayose said, “Linking Falana to illegally-acquired properties seized by the EFCC is bad enough but the facts provided by Malami make the case against Falana even worse. This must be the real reason why Falana always fall head over heels in defence of the EFCC and Magu, not minding the vicious violations of the constitutionally-guaranteed rights, freedoms, and liberties of citizens.

“What we have always suspected has now been confirmed publicly and by no less a person as the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice.

“Falana’s alleged unprincipled and disgusting defence of the EFCC and Magu’s penchant for disrespect of the rule of law and due process is for selfish reasons and personal gain.”

Fayose said the Federal Government must investigate Falana and not allow the matter be swept under the carpet.

But reacting to the call for his probe by Fayose, Falana, in a telephone interview with one of our correspondents, lambasted the governor for failing to pay attention to his earlier explanation on his connection with the property.

He challenged Fayose and the AGF to approach the court to seek a forfeiture order on the N1bn property if they were sure it was proceeds of crime.

Falana said, “I stand by my earlier defence that I never bought the house from the EFCC and I challenge him (Fayose) and the Attorney General to show the evidence. I challenge the garrulous Governor of Ekiti State to prove the monstrous allegation that I bought a house from the EFCC.

He added, “Since Mr. Ayo Fayose has not paid attention to the fact and circumstances of the case, I advise him to study my explanation that the house in question is a subject matter of a pending suit before the Federal High Court and that the house has been forfeited to AMCON in the interim.

“The EFCC is not a party to the case. So, if Mr. Ayo Fayose wants to join the suit, he’s free, he is at liberty to approach the Federal High Court holding at Abuja to prove his allegation. But his is a case of Ajegbodo to nweni kun ’ra. (The one recklessly eating fresh yam will always want to co-opt others into the deal.) .

“As of today, he has already forfeited six houses to the government of Nigeria. So, if he is sure that that this is proceeds of crime, he should apply to have it forfeited. He should contact the Attorney General, Mr. Malami, to apply to have the house forfeited, if they are sure that the house is proceeds of crime.”

Falana said the governor had been looking for a way to attack him “since I pressured the state to charge Mr. Fayose and his armed goons with the cold-blooded murder of Dr. Ayo Daramola and Tunde Omojola.”    (Punch)

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Reform Economy, Distribute Wealth Equally Among Ethnic Groups, Falana Tells FG

Femi-Falana

Femi Falana (SAN)

From: WOLE BALOGUN, Ado-Ekiti

Human Rights lawyer, Mr. Femi Falana (SAN), has urged the Federal Government to urgently reform the Nigerian economy and ensure equity in the distribution of the nation’s wealth to the various ethnic nationalities.
He believed that that was key to finding a lasting solution to the myriads of problems facing the country.

Falana, who said the ongoing debate about restructuring in the country centred on devolution of powers without responsibilities and dire need to satisfy ethnic groups, maintained that the bottomline of restructuring, which the agitators had failed to address, was the economy.

The renowned rights activist spoke on the theme: “The Nation Nigeria: Restructuring, Secession or Status Quo – the Way Forward” at the Obafemi Adewale Colloquium and Law Dinner organised by the Young Lawyers Forum of Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) Ado-Ekiti Branch to mark Adewale’s 60th birthday.
He said the type of restructuring that Nigeria needed was economic restructuring.

He also charged lawyers to fight for redeeming the soul of the country, saying: “For us as lawyers, we must save our society. If we are going to join the struggle for restructuring, we should not join as politicians seeking transfer of power to the regions. Let it be for reduction of power at the centre, transfer of power to the states. Let us seek reduction of cost of governance. Let us seek right to education. Let us seek right to equitable distribution of wealth. Let us seek the need to fight the lopsided appointments in the country. Let us talk about economic restructuring.

“The bottom line of restructuring is economy. Majority of our people are poor and they are battling with survival. If you want more powers from Abuja, it is not relevant to them. Restructuring that has to do with job-creation for the youths. The resources of this country are enormous to accommodate the demands of the youths, women have to be factored into restructuring, the unemployed people, the masses, the peasant farmers, the workers. Nobody is talking about them.

“The economy of this country must be restructured. Restructuring is not about satisfying ethnic groups, it is about addressing the national question. When we address the national question, we are trying to find out who gets what and how. We have almost the worst income disparity in the world where a few people are dangerously rich while a vast majority are wallowing in poverty. It cannot continue,” Falana said.

He advised that the country’s marginal oil fields should be shared with a view to redistribute wealth instead of being sold, querying: “Why are we selling the oil fields to individuals when the states are suffering? Why don’t we sell or lease them to the states so that they can make money to run the business of governance?”

Falana, who said the fight against corruption was only at the surface level, charged the Federal Government to take a serious look at cases of corruption through putting in place necessary framework and addressing basis necessities cum social security that will discourage graft.

According to him, countries that have significantly reduced corruption have in place systems including effective healthcare delivery system, health insurance, mortgage and effective public transportation, saying: “When you address basic necessities of life, you don’t have to preach against corruption. Those who engage in corruption will be seen as mad when basic needs are met”.

Adewale who appreciated the young lawyers for the honour done him, advised them to be of good conduct, focussed and follow in the footsteps of great lawyers who had made landmarks in the profession and as well continued to strive for the betterment of society and restoration of dignity to humanity.  (The Sun)

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