Editorial Team

Emmanuel Udom-Managing Editor, Stephen Dijo Philemon-Deputy Editor, Janet Udom-Senior Correspondent, Precious Udom-Senior Correspondent, Williams Ita-Bureau Chief(Akwa Ibom/Cross River), Fabian Idoko-Senior Correspondent
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    Thursday, 26 May 2016

    N700million Arms Deal: EFCC Vs Iyiola Omisore


     By Emmanuel Udom
     After months of dilly-dally, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC), on Tuesday, May 24,  finally declared Senator Iyiola Omisore, former Deputy Governor of Osun State wanted in connection with a N700 million arms procurement deal.

    The anti-graft agency, posted on its facebook page said that Omisore, a notable politician allegedly received a whopping sum of N700million.

    The money he received from Col Sambo Dasuki, former National Security Adviser, who is presently in EFCC net, was meant for the procurement of arms  for the Boko Haram war, presently ravaging parts of  north-eastern states of Nigeria.

    According to the agency, “The former senator is wanted in connection with a case of receiving and misappropriating the sum of N700, 000,000.00 from the Office of the National Security Adviser, between June and November, 2014.

    Our correspondent  recalled that Omisore has been playing a hide-and-seek game with the anti-graft agency since formal invitation was sent to him in April 7, 2016.

     The Osun born politician was expected to visit the office of the agency to make clarifications on the investigation it was conducting in connection with the money.

     But, instead of visiting EFCC, Omisore decided to approach a Federal High Court in Abuja to plead for the enforcement of his fundamental human rights.

     Justice Husseini Baba Yusuf consequently ordered that Omisore should only be arrested through a due and legal process.

     However, the EFCC says it has obtained a warrant of arrest and is now going after the former Osun Deputy Governor.

     Meanwhile Omisore has asked EFCC to pay him N500 million as damages for declaring him “wanted” and alleging that he failed to honour its invitation.
    Omisore threatened to sue the commission, and its head of media and publicity, if the payment is not made.

     The Osun born politician is wanted by the EFCC in connection with an allegation that he received and misappropriated over N700 million from the office of the National Security Adviser.

    In a letter dated 25th May 2016, addressed to Ibrahim Magu, chairman of the EFCC, Omisore, through his lawyer, Chris Uche, said the publication declaring him wanted as published in some national dailies, was both malicious and false.
    Uche said the publication was not just malicious, but a total falsehood in all its material aspect.

    “Our client has not refused to make himself available to the commission, but rather has proceeded to the court to seek the protection of the court when he perceived that the invitation was a deliberate plot to unlawfully arrest and detain him,” he said.

    “The high court of the federal capital territory in suit number FCT/HC/CV1456/2016 had granted an interim order in the following terms, in favour of our client to wit:

    “An order of interim injunction is hereby made restraining the first and second and second respondent by themselves, their agents, officers, servants, privies or anybody, howsoever described from unlawfully arresting, detaining or in any manner interfering with the fundamental rights of the applicant without following the due process of law.”

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    According to him, the commission was not only aware that the order protected his client from the invitation, but the commission filed a counter affidavit and a preliminary objection to challenge the order of being an impediment to the discharge of its statutory duty.

    “Your commission was represented before the honourable court on the 24th of April 2016 when the matter came up, yet you are callously alleging that our client refused to honour an invitation by your commission,” Uche argued.

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