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Court Didn’t Fault Azibaola’s Detention, EFCC Insists

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has refuted reports that the commission was faulted by a Judge over the detention of a cousin to former President Goodluck Jonathan, Robert Azibaola.

The Commission’s spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren, said in a statement yesterday that rather than condemn the agency, the Judge indeed, acknowledged that the anti-graft agency had the remand warrant to hold the suspect.

“The syndicated story tended to create the wrong notion that Justice Olasumbo Goodluck of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court condemned the Commission for allegedly violating the fundamental rights of Azibaola, a suspect under investigation for receiving $40million in a phantom contract from the Office of the National Security Adviser.

“This is further from what transpired in court on Wednesday, May 25, this year when her lordship delivered ruling in the fundamental rights enforcement application of Azibaola.

“Contrary to the impression created by the report, the court did not fault the detention of Azibaola by the EFCC, as her lordship held that a remand warrant was validly obtained by the respondent in line with provisions of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act and consequently dismissed the application of Azibaola for lack of merit.”

He added: “The court merely frowned at the Commission’s inability to produce the suspect, in line with an earlier order of court on the ex-parte application of Azibaola, for which counsel representing the EFCC apologised to her lordship.

“The Commission had earlier filed a motion asking the court to set aside the ex-parte order on the grounds that it was obtained by false information, which the court rejected.

“It must be stated that the EFCC is a law abiding entity and could not have taken any action that would disregard the sanctity of the court.”
Uwujaren noted that the report must have been promoted by certain individuals for vested interests, describing the reports as a campaign of misinformation against the EFCC.



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