Lawyers fault CCB on Buratai’s property in Dubai
Clearance by bureau ended controversy, says counsel
Lagos-based lawyer and rights activist, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, has faulted the clearance issued to the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt. General Tukur Buratai, by the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB).Adegboruwa said there is no power in law that empowered the CCB to verify or issue clearance to anybody in any matter of this nature.
He insisted further that it is not possible for the matter to be put to rest or exonerate the army chief. “It is one of these gimmicks to shield Buhari’s men.”
Adegboruwa challenged Buratai “to walk to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for investigation if he wants to be exonerated because the matter must be properly investigated.”
Another lawyer, Charles Lambo also said it is not possible for an individual in a normal situation to acquire such amount of property running into billions of dollars.
“All his life emolument is not even enough to acquire the property. Therefore, for an individual to now come up to say the matter will be rested as a result of CCB clearance is a misnomer.
“The matter, like Femi Falana has earlier said, must be properly investigated because it is on record that before he became the COAS, he was a Procurement Officer in the same Army.
“And this has been the very reason why concerned Nigerians are calling for the general overhaul of the military. So he has a question to answer on where and how he got the money,” Lambo added.
But, an Abuja-based lawyer, Ugochukwu Osuagwu stated yesterday that the clearance to the COAS has put to rest the issue. Osuagwu statved that the issuance of the verification certificate was a clear evidence that Buratai has complied with all known laws in the country as regards assets declaration by public officers, and as such, he was exempted from any liability of criminal prosecution.Osuagwu believed that Buratai had set a good example by being the first COAS to direct all officers of the Nigerian Army to declare their assets.
According to him, Buratai declared his assets in May 2015, while serving as the Commander, Multinational Joint Task force, after which he also declared in July 25 the same year on his appointment as the COAS.