A Federal high court sitting in Lagos South West Nigeria presided over by Justice Mojisola Olatoregun today dismissed a fundamental right enforcement suit instituted against Economic and Financial Crimes Commission EFCC by former President Goodluck Jonathan cousin Azibola Robert.
Justice Olatoregun in her judgement declared that the suit instituted by Azibola is abuse of court process as the applicant has instituted other multiple suits in other courts, in addition the steps taken so far by the EFCC is in accordance with the appropriate laws.
Azibola joined Attorney General of the Federation and the Federal Republic of Nigeria as respondents.
In an affidavit sworn to by a lecturer of Niger Delta State University, Bayelsa State Dr Faith Robert, it was averred that Azibola, who hails from Bayelsa State, is a cousin of and close confidant to the immediate past president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr Goodluck Ebele Jonathan and this is the singular reason for his current travails in the hands of respondents who wants him to implicate the said former President at all cost.
Due to his vast experience, sometimes in 2012,he was contacted by late General Patrick Azazi to temporarily curb the problems of Petroleum, pipe -line vandalization and oil bunkering. Consequently, in September 2014 the sum of 40million US Dollars was paid into the account of Oneplus Holdings Nigeria limited for the assignment with agreement that he will be paid 10% of the said sum.
However there was change of Government in May 2015,and surprisingly,a committee set up to review some projects of last administration instructed his company to refund the $40million immediately, thereafter he was detained through a warrant for remand obtained at a magistrate court for alleged financial misappropriation on a purely civil transaction
He urged the court to declare that the acts of the respondents in obtaining remand orders against him for the purpose of keeping him in their custody is flagrant violation of his fundamental right as guaranteed by the Nigerian constitution is unlawful.
An order of the court restraining the respondents from further violating his rights through unlawful arrest and detention.
However in a counter affidavit sworn to by a counsel of the EFCC Idris Abdullahi Mohammed, he averred that Sometimes in November, 2015 EFCC received an intelligent report against Azibola Robert,his company and Stella Robert, His Director of Finance and Account Dakuru Atukpa and others on suspicious Contract awarded by the former National security Adviser to the President Colonel Sambo Dasuki (retired) from the committee set up to Audit the procurement of defence equipment by the armed forces from 2007 to date, the committee discovered that between 2012 and March 2015,the National Security adviser, Colonel Sambo Dasuki awarded fictitious contract to several companies to the tune of N2,219,188,609.50,$1,671742,
Colonel Dasuki also directed Central Bank of Nigeria to frivolously transfer the sum of N650million to Tunji Adeniyi & co meant for purchasing a property at Plot 2245Maitama Cadastral to the applicant and 40million US Dollars to Oneplus holdings limited meant for the Supply of Tactical Equipment to special forces. The money was trantsfer without the award of any contract.
That Azibola received the sum of $40million and diverted same to his own personal use and to the use of others. He swap deals with the above sum with several companies through the aid of his wife Stella Robert and his account officer one Mr Amobi Agum.
Idris Mohammed averred further that in an effort to conceal and obscure proceed of these transaction,Oneplus Holdings Nigeria limited through its managing Director /Chief Executive officer, Azibola Robert and the Director of Finance and account Stella Robert ordered transferred the sum of $1,500,000 Dollars to Reya Telecommunications limited who subsequently in a personal transaction transferred the sum of $1,400,000 Dollars to NETSPACE Telecommunications.
Documents recovered during search in Oneplus Holdings Nigeria limited on the 24th of March, 2016.indicates that duo of Stella Robert and one Dike Ndubusi received in cash between 17th of October, 2014 and 27th January, 2015 the total sum of $7,556,000 Dollars which was converted to N1,344,208,000 for their personal use, the above transaction were carried out in 31 transactions.
Total sum of $4,313,856.4 was directly transferred to sister companies of Oneplus Holdings Nigeria limited and other related in house transactions for the procurement of machines and equipments for sisters companies via Reya Telecommunications limited and Jorgenson.
In effort to launder the $40million Dollars the applicant and his wife through the assistance of their account officer Amobi Agum transferred the total sum of $2million Dollars to one Capital field investment. In order to further consolidate the process of his money laundering Agum instructed his colleague and accomplice Mr Nnamdi Amechi to pay the Naira equivalent of $2million to account of one kamaludeen Dahiru .
That in view of this revelation above Azibola and his wife were severally invited by the EFCC but refused to honour such invitation, but later show up, in the fear that EFCC may declare him wanted,and in view of the applicant running from one place to another and frustrating the investigation, EFCC sought and obtained a remand order from a court in Abuja.
In another investigation conducted by the EFCC, it was also discovered that the applicant whilst as the managing Director of Mangrovetech Construction and Engineering Company Nigeria limited now Kakatar Ce limited received the sum of N2,504,917,058.88 from the Nigerian Maritime Administration and safety Agency on the 18th of February and converted same to his own use.
Mr Idri Mohammed, contended that the commission is empowered by law to investigate,arrest and detain a person by court upon reasonable suspicion of committing an offence.
Consequently, the applicant ‘s suit is frivolous, an abuse of court process, and time wasting and should be dismissed with cost.
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