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Just In: EFCC submits additional proof of evidence against Emefiele



The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has submitted additional proof of evidence against the former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele.

During the court hearing on Friday, Emefiele’s counsel, Olalekan Ojo requested an adjournment to review the new evidence before continuing the cross-examination of John Ikechukwu Ayoh, the second prosecution witness.

Ojo accused the EFCC counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, of engaging in “trial by ambush” and not being diligent in their prosecution.

He told the court that he just received the additional proof of evidence from the EFCC.

He said the new proof of evidence was filed on Thursday, saying he needed to study the additional proof of evidence to cross-examine the prosecution witness.

He told the court, “My lord, there is a need to adjourn this case. We were just served these huge documents by the EFCC in court.

“The prosecution keeps dumping documents on us at every sitting. This is trial by ambush.”

Sharing the same sentiment, the counsel to the second defendant, Adeyinka Kotoye, also said he was served the additional proof of evidence five minutes after arriving in court.

In his defence, Oyedepo argued that they provided documents from a former aide to Emefiele in preparation for his testimony, saying it did not affect the ongoing cross-examination.

He added that it was unfair to describe the service of processes by the prosecution as “ambush by trial”.

Oyedepo emphasised that the additional evidence submitted were documents obtained from the phone of a former aide to Emefiele, John Adetona, who is set to testify as a witness.

He also clarified that these documents were provided in advance for Adetona’s future testimony and that he was not scheduled to appear in court on the present or upcoming hearing on May 9.

“The witness (Adetona) whose device the documents were printed from has not given evidence before the court,” Oyedepo said.

“In preparation for his testimony which is not coming up today or May 9, the prosecution rather waiting for the defence to formally demand the hard copies the prosecution team printed the documents out.

“How does that amount to prosecutorial unfairness?”

Oyedepo, however, requested that the court instruct the defence counsels to conclude their cross-examination of the second prosecution witness.

He clarified that the introduction of new documents does not hinder or impact the ongoing cross-examination of this witness.

However, Emefiele’s lawyer disagreed, stating that he needed time to review the new documents as they may contain valuable information for use during cross-examination.

In his ruling, the presiding judge, Rahman Oshodi, agreed with the defendant’s counsel.

Oshodi then adjourned the matter to May 9.

Emefiele and his co-defendant, Henry Omoile, are currently being tried in a Lagos high court on a 26-count charge.

Both the former CBN governor and Omoile pleaded not guilty to all the charges against them.

News and Report

Just In: President Tinubu approves N70,000 minimum wage





President Bola Tinubu has approved N70,000 as the new minimum wage for Nigerian workers with a promise to review the national minimum wage law every three years.


More details later…

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News and Report

Gov. Zulum Clarifies Son’s Purported Killing Of Chinese National At Indian Nightclub




The Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum, has denied reports alleging that one of the sons has been arrested and sentenced to prison for the murder of some Indian citizens.

Reports has it that there were unverified rumours, especially on social media platforms, alleging that the first son of the governor, Umar Zulum Umara, killed the Chinese national during a fight at an Indian nightclub.

However, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on New Media, Abdurrahman Ahmed Bundi, dismissed the reports in a statement on Wednesday.

According to him, no son of the governor was arrested or charged with any crime.

The statement read, “attention of the Borno State Governor’s Media Unit has been drawn to rumours circulating that the son of the Borno State Governor has been arrested for the alleged murder of some Indian citizens.

“This misinformation was published in an online blog, Nairaland, titled “Son of Borno State Governor Murders Someone In India—Politics.” The blog claimed that the Governor also travelled to India, attempting to use diplomatic status to resolve the matter.

“It is on record that Governor Babagana Zulum was on a one-month vacation in Saudi Arabia for the 2024 Hajj and later travelled to Egypt to attend the annual ASUWAN forum conference in Cairo.

“The Media Unit would like to clarify and set the record straight that Nairaland and other online blogs have mischievously spread defamatory content without any speck of truth.

“We hereby warned Nairaland and all those who have spread the false information to pull down this misinformation from its website and platforms within the next 24 hours and offer an unreserved apology to Governor Zulum, his son, and the entire family, or risk legal action. The Governor shall also not hesitate to take legal action against any media outlet that continues to publicise this defamatory information on its platform.

“We would like to inform the public that none of Governor’s Zulum’s son was either arrested or charged with any crime, or involved in any unlawful activities anywhere.

“We urge the public to exercise caution when consuming and sharing information, particularly when it comes from unverified sources and blogs instead of credible media outlets.

“We enjoin all media organisations to engage in responsible journalism of truth and factual verification while recognising the potential harm and psychological trauma the spread of false information might have caused to the Governor’s family.”


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Over 600,000 Nigerians sought asylum abroad under Buhari – Report




Over 600,000 Nigerians filed for asylum in other countries between 2016 and 2023, which were years under the administration of former President Muhammadu Buhari.

Buhari was President from 2015 to 2023 and handed over to President Bola Tinubu who was sworn in on May 29, 2023, after winning in the general elections the same year.

According to a report released on Wednesday, July 17, 2024, by Statisense, a data collection organisation, of a total of 664,384 in eight years, 355,792 persons sought asylum between 2016 and 2019 while 308,592 sought asylum between 2020 and 2023.

On a year-by-year basis, 66,862 sought asylum in 2016, 91,924 in 2017, 84,624 (2018), 112,382 (2019), 73,233 (2020), 83,105 (2021), 83,402 (2022), and 68,852 in 2023.

The figures indicate a surge from the past years, as Statisense noted that within 12 years – 2004 to 2015 – only 204,791 Nigerians filed for asylum in other countries.

In total, 869,175 Nigerians filed for asylum in the last 20 years, notably from 2004 to 2023.

The report was posted on the organisation’s handle @StatiSense, citing the United Nations Refugee Agency.

In another report shared by the organisation on Wednesday, it was stated that the Republic of Niger topped countries with the most Nigerian refugees in 2023 with about 200,497 Nigerians and a total of 1,268,464 Nigerian refugees between 2015 and 2023.

Niger, a border country, shares proximity with Nigeria’s north, where residents battle a spate of insecurity in the region ranging from banditry, terrorism and herdsmen-farmers crisis.

Another report also revealed that Nigerians topped the list of African countries who sought asylum in Canada in 2023 with about 10,111 asylum seekers followed by Kenya with 1,345.  It stated that 1,345 Nigerians however sought asylum in the United Kingdom and 5,136 in the United States of America.

Source: The Punch

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