Jonathan get it us lamented

Anti-corruption War:
You’ve Lost It, US
Tells Jonathan
Sat, 16/03/2013 – 1:01am | PAUL DADA ,
The United States has condemned the
pardon granted some ex-convicts by
President Goodluck Jonathan and the
National Council of State, insisting that
there is no justification to grant pardon
to corrupt individuals as the action
represents a setback in the war
against graft.
In a tweet by the US Mission in
Nigeria, the US faulted the propriety of
Jonathan’s action on the matter,
saying, “We see this as a setback in the
fight against corruption.”
The US further stated that “the United
States Government is deeply
disappointed over the recent pardons
of corrupt officials by GON
(Government of Nigeria)”.
President Jonathan and the Council of
State had, on Tuesday, granted former
Bayelsa State governor Diepreye
Alamieyeseigha and former managing
director of the defunct Bank of the
North, Shettima Bulama, pardon. The
move has been condemned by civil
society and other interest groups.
Both Alamieyeseigha and Bulama had
been prosecuted by the Economic and
Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)
under the leadership of the former
EFCC boss, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, while
justices Dan Abutu and Mohammed
Shuaibu of the Federal High Court in
Lagos convicted them accordingly.
Meanwhile, prominent lawyers have
criticised the double posthumous state
pardon granted the late Major-General
Shehu Musa Yar’Adua by President
Goodluck Jonathan, saying that the
development shows that the president
is not getting quality advice from the
attorney-general of the federation and
minister of justice, Mr. Mohammed
Lawyers including Prof Itse Sagay
(SAN), Yusuf Ali (SAN), Mr Yahaya
Mahmood (SAN), Ms Carol Ajie and Mr
Festus Keyamo argued that it is wrong
for the president to grant another
pardon to the former chief of staff,
supreme headquarters, when the
former head of state, Gen.
Abdulsalami Abubakar, had already
granted pardon to the deceased on
September 30, 1998.
The lawyers spoke in separate
interviews with LEADERSHIP
WEEKEND yesterday.
Many Nigerians believed that the
president used the pardon of the late
Yar’Adua, General Oladipo Diya and
other military officers as a decoy to
absolve his former boss of
monumental financial crimes against
Bayelsa State.
Commenting on the issue of granting
another pardon to Yar’Adua, Sagay
said, “He (Yar’Adua) doesn’t need
another pardon. It is superfluous.
Yahaya Mahmood said, “Section 175 of
the 1999 Constitution (as amended)
gives the president the powers to grant
a pardon to any person convicted of an
offence after consultation with the
Council of State. If a person has
already been pardoned, the president
has no powers to pardon him again. It
is also a big embarrassment.”
For Yusuf Ali, “ This is an oversight on
the part of the federal government on
the grounds that the action of Gen
Abdulsalami on September 30, 1998,
had settled the issue of pardon for the
late Yar’ Adua. Jonathan ought to have
checked the record before taking this
avoidable action.”
Ajie said, “President Jonathan should
please return AGF Bello Adoke to his
private practice; for our country’s
good, replace him with a senior lady
lawyer who has a great sense of law
and order to complement, in a very
historic way, the third arm of
“Adoke has too often embarrassed the
president; clearly Yar Adua’s ‘second
pardon’ was the product of a
misinformed Justice department under
a justice minister who is more keen on
causing confusion than solution. I
recall in 2010 when Bedding Holdings
Limited got an ex-parte injunction to
stop INEC registration exercise in a
case I was effectively tackling, AGF
Adoke was just not interested in the
legal solutions; even at the risk of the
presidential election not holding, he
was nonchalant and unpatriotic but for
my humble legal efforts that
contributed in saving the situation.”
Speaking on the double pardon, the
chairman of the Nigerian Bar
Association (NBA), Bwari Branch,
Dickson O.A. Ibe,  said what  General
Abdulsalami Abubakar did to late
Musa Yar’adua, Adisa and General
Oladipo Diya is  not state pardon but
reduction of  the death sentence to life
imprisonment for Diya.
He said, “This pardon will now set him
free on the streets. I strongly believe
this pardon is expected to give
absolute freedom to these people. It
can be described as a double but this
is a final pardon instead. There is
nothing wrong in granting pardon to
these people.
“Morally speaking, it depends on the
people. People think something is
wrong because of their level of
knowledge but the law must be
followed. If anything is done legally or
within the legal confines, it behoves
anybody who is developed in mind to
know that it is done morally.”
In his own view, the chairman of the
NBA, Gwagwalada branch, John E.T.
Amokaha, said: “If a man is pardoned
twice, it is called surplusage and the
only implication is that we do not have
records in respect to such serious
matters. Where there are many
people and you are granting pardon to
same people who were pardoned
before, it is an indication of our state
of craft , inefficiency of our state
services or incompetence.
“Morally speaking, the act of pardon
on these people is not right. It is not
good for our democracy and country
because, how can we be fighting
corruption and at the same time
glorifying corrupt citizens who have
been convicted for corruption. I feel
disappointed especially with regards
to people that were convicted for
corruption. It is morally wrong.”
Meanwhile, efforts to speak with
Adoke failed as he did not pick our
correspondent’s calls neither did he
return the text message sent to his
mobile phone.
One of our correspondents also visited
the office of the AGF in Abuja
yesterday on two occasions but he was
informed that the AGF was not


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