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Thursday, 22 June 2017

Why Federal Government appealed Saraki’s acquittal

Why Federal Government appealed Saraki’s acquittal


Reaffirming his commitment to the anti-corruption war yesterday, Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice Abubakar Malami said that authorising the appeal filed against the acquittal of Senate President Bukola Saraki by the Code of Conduct Tribunal, is another evidence of his commitment.

The Federal Government on Tuesday filed 11 grounds of appeal the Court of Appeal and described the CCT’s no case judgment as unreasonable.

In a statement signed by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Salihu Isah and the Special Assistant to the President on Prosecution (AGF Office), Mr. Okoi Obono-Obla. Malami debunked a statement credited to a member of the Prof. Itse Sagay-led Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, (PACAC) Prof. Femi Odekunle, which questioned his commitment to the anti-corruption fight.

Malami said in spite of recent judicial setbacks suffered by the anti-corruption war, he remained “resolutely, painstakingly, doggedly, purposefully and determinedly with all the constitutional and legal arsenals at the disposal of the Federal Government of Nigeria”.

The statement said: “The Honourable Attorney of the Federation wishes to assure Nigerians that despite some recent setbacks recorded in some of the cases involving politically-exposed people; that the war against corruption is fully on course.

“It shall be fought resolutely, painstakingly, doggedly, purposefully and determinedly with all the constitutional and legal arsenals at the disposal of the Federal Government of Nigeria.

“The Federal Government is more than ever before committed towards the complete eradication of the scourge of corruption and graft in the country.

“Those in a hurry to condemn due to the temporary setbacks recorded lately should tarry awhile because a legal process is deemed not concluded until it terminates at the Supreme Court which is the highest court of arbitration in Nigeria”.

The statement added: “To say that the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, SAN frowns at the statement is an understatement. In fact, he is highly disappointed that such accusation and statement could be made by those who ought to know better.

“The Honourable Attorney General of the Federation is saddened and flummoxed at the attempt to cast aspersion on his integrity, dedication and commitment to the war against corruption which undoubtedly is one of the major cornerstones of the present administration.

“There is no gainsaying that the incumbent Attorney General of the Federation has shown and demonstrated so much passion, drive, will and enthusiasm in prosecution of transgressors of the law ever seen in the annals of this country.

“The truth of the matter is that the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation is totally, fully and completely committed, dedicated and supports the war against corruption in all its form and ramification.”

“Towards this end, the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation since his assumption of office has initiated numerous reforms and programs to drive the war against corruption including the recently launched National Anti-Corruption Strategy, 2017.

“The National Anti-Corruption Strategy plan is a five-year strategic plan to combat corruption and corrupt tendencies in the country to the barest minimum. It is the first of its plan in the history of the country.”

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