Connect with us

Uncategorized

BREAKING: Kidnappers of Mike Ozekhome, others jailed 20 years

Published

on

The Federal High Court in Abuja has convicted and sentenced two individuals – Kelvin Oniarah and Frank Azuekor – to 20 years in prison for their involvement in terrorism and kidnapping activities dating back to 2013.

Their crimes included the abduction of renowned senior lawyer, Chief Mike Ozekhome, at the time.

Four suspects, Kelvin Oniarah Eziegbe, Frank Azuekor, Michael Omonigho (a traditional priest) and Momoh Haruna(first to fourth defendant) were in 2014, charged on 13 counts by the prosecution.

They were said to have also kidnapped Delta State Commissioner for Higher Education, Prof Hope Eghagha, Attanasius Ugbme and his friend, Emmanuel Maka Omorogbe, and attacked five policemen and two prison warders, leading to their death.

The case dragged on from 2014 to 2023 due to several adjournments as a result of the reassignment of the matter to three judges – Justice Adeniyi Ademola, Justice Babatunde Quadri and finally Justice Binta Nyako.

Ozekhome, during his testimony in court, identified the first and second defendant and told the court he played chess with them in their den and was eventually compelled to pay N40 million (in US dollars) before he was released.

Ozekhome told Justice Nyako that he saw as an eyewitness when the suspects exchanged gunshots with security agents when the first defendant attempted to attack the prison to free the second defendant.

However, the first and second defendants testified that they were forced to make confessional statements by the Department of State Services.

Advertisement

In her judgement on Friday, Justice Nyako found Kelvin and Frank guilty of terrorism and kidnapping, relying on the eyewitness testimony of Ozekhome.

SEE ALSO:  I’m in so much pain, I don't want to die young, says Portable as he calls for prayers

For the third defendant who was a priest in a shrine, the judge discharged him saying the priest has not done any wrong in giving help to visitors and the prosecution failed to connect his role as a priest to the allegations.

About Momoh Haruna who is still at large after escaping from prison custody, Nyako ordered that when he is arrested, he must be brought to court to face trial.

Subsequently, Nyako convicted the other suspects for terrorism and escaping from prison custody.

After their conviction, the two convicts pleaded for leniency citing health grounds and family.

“I have considered the plea made by the convicts, I have noted their remorsefulness. The convicts has been in custody for about ten years(in DSS), ” Binta said adding, the offense for which they were found guilty carried life imprisonment but she would use her discretion.

“I am going to sentence you to twenty years imprisonment each and it will run from the day you were arrested. This will serve as a deterrent. This is my decision,” Binta held, directing the DSS to transfer them to the Nigeria Prison Service. (Whistler)

Advertisement
Advertisements
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Uncategorized

FG has a duty to control prices of commodities — Falana

Published

on

FG has a duty to control prices of commodities — Falana
Femi Falana, SAN
The Nigerian government has a duty to intervene decisively on behalf of the majority of the people by enforcing price control mechanisms that protect citizens from exploitation as envisaged under the Price Control Act.

This is the view of Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana, who believes that this is necessary to guarantee that the economy of the country is not concentrated in the hands of a few.

Falana spoke with Channels Television’s correspondent, Shola Soyele against the background of his recent lawsuit against the federal government over failure to control rising prices of essential commodities.

“The Bola Tinubu administration has said that there is food in abundance in Nigeria. I think the Minister of Information made that statement a couple of days ago, but we have a situation where majority of the people cannot afford the prices that have gone to the roof.

“And so that is why the government has a duty under the Price Control Act to control the price of essential commodities so that Nigerians will not be subjected to hunger unnecessarily. It is so bad now that if you pick a food item, if you go back to the market tomorrow, the price has gone up,” Falana said.

He argued that while affluent citizens can cope with spiralling inflation, most ordinary Nigerians have been priced out of accessing basic commodities under the current laissez-faire regime. Hence, the urgent need for government’s intervention based on extant laws.

The Senior Advocate also questioned why electricity tariffs, telecom rates and petrol pump price could be moderated via subsidies whilst other essentials like food, medicines and diesel were allowed to rise astronomically thereby eroding people’s purchasing power.

SEE ALSO:  Anambra billionaire dies of heart attack watching AFCON match

The Federal High Court sitting in Lagos, on Wednesday, ordered the Federal Government to fix the price of goods and petroleum products within seven days from today.

Justice Ambrose Lewis-Allagoa granted the order sequel to an originating motion filed and argued by the applicant, Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana.

Advertisement

Falana had dragged the Price Control Board and the Attorney General of the Federation, both of whom are listed as defendants before the court to determine “whether by virtue of Section 4 (1) of the Price Control Act, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004, the first defendant is carrying out its duty to impose a price on any goods that are of the kind specified in the First Schedule to the Price Control Act.”

In an affidavit in support of the summons taken out by the Senior Advocate and deposed to by a legal practitioner from his firm, Taiwo Olawanle, the deponent noted that the following commodities: bicycles and its spare parts; flour; matches; milk; motorcycles and its spare parts; motor vehicles and spare parts; salt; sugar and petroleum products including diesel, petrol motor spirit and kerosene are listed in the Price Control Act.

He also noted that the Act gives the Price Control Board powers to fix the prices of this wide array of commodities. (Channels TV)

Advertisements
Continue Reading

Uncategorized

Access Bank founder, Herbert Wigwe feared dead in chopper crash in California

Published

on

Akpabio mourns Access Bank CEO, Says death painful loss to Nigeria
CEO, Access Bank Plc, Herbert Wigwe

Herbert Wigwe, the co-founder of Access Bank and the founder, Wigwe University, has reportedly died in a helicopter crash in California, United States.

Wigwe was also the Chief Executive Officer, CEO, of Access Holdings, the parent company of Access Bank.

He was reportedly on board the chopper with his wife, son and three other passengers.

It was gathered that the chopper was headed to Las Vegas when it crashed near a border city between Nevada and California on Friday night.

The US government confirmed all on board dead as no survivors have been located as of Saturday morning.

The helicopter was carrying six people when it crashed on Friday night near the California-Nevada border.

The United States Federal Aviation Administration said that the Eurocopter EC130 helicopter crashed around 10:00 pm local time, near Nipton, California, an unincorporated community about 60 miles south of Las Vegas in eastern San Bernardino County.

According to Mara Rodriguez, a public information officer with the department, officials at the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department were made aware of the downed aircraft at 10:12 pm, local time.

Advertisement

She added that the scene of the crash was determined to be east of Interstate 15, near Halloran Springs Road.

The New York Times has confirmed the incident but did not name the passengers.

No official statement has been issued on the incident.

Advertisements
SEE ALSO:  Gunmen kidnap Abia varsity deputy vice-chancellor
Continue Reading

Uncategorized

Alleged N10bn fraud: EFCC witness can’t recall if Yahaya Bello’s cousin made withdrawals

Published

on

Alleged N10bn fraud: EFCC witness can’t recall if Yahaya Bello’s cousin made withdrawals
Ali Bello

A prosecution witness in the trial of Ali Bello (said to be cousin of Kogi State’s ex-governor, Yahaya Bello) and one other, Edward Bananda, has said he could not recall if the defendants made withdrawals from the state’s account.

Bell and Dauda are being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, before a Federal High Court in Abuja on a 10-count charge in which they are accused of engaging in misappropriation and money laundering.

At the resumption of proceedings on Monday, Bananda, the second prosecution witness, was cross-examined by lawyers to the defendants – A. M Aliyu (SAN) and Nureini Jimoh (SAN).

While being questioned by Jimoh (who represented Suleiman), he was handed three statements of accounts belonging to the state government and asked to recall if the defendants made withdrawals.

Bananda, who had said most of the withdrawals were made by Hudu Abdusalam (a cashier at the Kogi State House), told the court that he could not recall if the defendants made withdrawals from the accounts.

When asked if he could identify Hudu Abdusalam among the two defendants, the witness said he could not.

The witness, who was taken through some pages of the account statements by Jimoh, noted that most of the inflows were security funds belonging to Kogi State Government.

He said none of the withdrawals in the account statements exceeded the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, stipulated cash withdrawal limit of N10 million.

Advertisement

Reading from one of the account statements, the witness noted that on May 24, 2019, there was an inflow of N50 million; N100 million on May 27, 2019; N50 million on May 31, 2019; and N50 million on July 3.

SEE ALSO:  Alleged N10bn fraud: EFCC witness can’t recall if Yahaya Bello’s cousin made withdrawals

The witness who said all the inflows were security funds, noted that they were also withdrawn in tranches of N10 million each.

When Jimoh suggested to the witness that the funds were meant for security purposes of Kogi State, Bananda said he did not know.

Under cross-examination by Aliyu (who represented Bello) the witness said one of the accounts belong to Kogi State Government House Administration.

Bananda said funds in the account belong to the Kogi State Government and that there are names and signatories to the account.

At the conclusion of the cross examination, the prosecuting lawyer, Rotimi Oyedepo (SAN), indicated his intention to call another witness.

The trial judge, Justice James Omotosho, adjourned till February 6 for continuation of trial.

Daily Post

Advertisement
Advertisements
Continue Reading

Trending