The Save Nigeria Group (SNG) and the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC),
have faulted the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice,
Mr Mohammed Adoke [SAN], over government’s position on the House of
Representatives Committee report on the fuel subsidy scam.
In its reaction which came by way of a statement from Yinka Odumakin, the SNG
said it took exception to the press statement by the Attorney General of the
Federation, calling for the understanding and patience of Nigerians regarding
prosecution of those “found wanting” in the fuel subsidy probe.
”On its face, the press release indicates perhaps a suspicion by the AGF that the
“groups and well-meaning Nigerians” demanding a swift prosecution are distrustful
of the federal government judging by its history of insolence for the rule of law and
high tolerance for corruption,” the statement said.
It added that “using buzz words such as “difficult” and “tedious”, the AGF would
want to convince Nigerians that the process of investigation and prosecution cannot
be achieved quickly.
“We disagree. We would like to remind Nigerians, that our suspicion of intentional
delay in the name of protracted investigation and prosecution and calculated
preemptory campaigns against the rights of Nigerians to demand justice through
demonstrations or strike actions, was the reason behind our request for an
“We maintain our request for the appointment of an independent prosecutor on
further reasoning that the fuel subsidy prosecution cannot be trusted to the AGF or
the anti-graft agencies over whose activities he has interference powers because of
apparent personal and political conflicts of interest.
“In addition, a protracted investigation indicated by the AGF is pointless at this time
because the Ad-hoc Committee Report as amended by the House of
Representatives, has established convincing probable cause for several criminal
violations upon which immediate prosecution can be based.
“The political conflict of interest in the fuel subsidy probe is so glaring that it could
not be disputed even by the AGF, the reason why it was totally omitted by his
press release. That conflict of interest is factually based and cannot be
underestimated. It is clear and absolutely convincing that most of those indicted by
the Ad-hoc Committee Report are members of the PDP, the ruling party.
“ It is also undeniable that most of the indicted persons and corporations are huge
donors to the presidential elections of President Goodluck Jonathan. It is also a
fact that the AGF as well as Mrs. Diezani Allison-Madueke, the Minister of
Petroleum; Mrs. Ngozi Okonjo-Iwealla, the Minister for Finance; Mr. Sanusi Lamido
Sanusi, the Governor of the Central Bank, and almost all the current and former
high ranking officials all of whom have been indicted by the report are all presidential
appointees and well-connected members of the PDP.
“The highly probable intermeddling and influence of the party on the prosecutorial
willingness of the AGF has been documented by the fact that the PDP came out
swinging, threatening brimstone and fire on the PDP members of the Ad-Hoc
Committee, prompting the chairman of the committee to declare that if because of
the report the PDP withdraws its support for his gubernatorial ambition, and so be
it. By itself, the political conflict of interest alone is enough justification for the
appointment of an independent prosecutor if the president is sincere about his
intention to prosecute those “found wanting in the fuel subsidy probe.” But there is
“The AGF press release requesting patience because of the need for further
investigations confirmed our suspicion of the unwillingness or the inability of the
AGF to timely prosecute those indicted by the report.
“For one, as a lawyer, the AGF ought to know that immediate prosecution is
appropriate where probable cause of wrongdoing has been established. The Ad-
Hoc Committee was not frivolous. It was based on verifiable facts, documents and
sworn testimonies of witnesses.
The veracity of some of the sworn testimonies and documents has been admitted
even against their own interests by some of the indicted parties. For instance, the
former Accountant-General has admitted that indeed cheques in the amount of 999
million Naira were issued by his office 128 time within 24 hours as an attempt to
bypass the regulations against writing cheques of over a billion Naira or more.
“ It is also undisputed, in fact, there is admission that monies were disbursed from
the federation account in violation of the constitutional appropriation provisions. So,
we should ask, what clearer evidence of wrongdoing does the AGF intend to reveal
by a protracted investigation?
Also reacting to Adoke’s conclusions on the matter, the Congress for Progressive
Change [CPC] said it is an attempt by government to ensure that the indicted
persons are not punished at the end of the day.
According to statement from the party’s National Publicity Secretary, Engr.Rotimi
Fashaki, The CPC said it received Adoke’s comments on the matter, “with
The statement said, “It is our belief that this is a carefully-woven plot to use the
guise of the ‘comprehensive investigation’ by the FG-appointed headship of the anti-
graft agencies to extirpate any form of punishment for the criminality against the
“Indubitably, AGF Adoke has expressed the stance of the PDP led FG on this
matter. Should the people expect anything different? Of course not! Under Jonathan’
s watch, the nation is tottering under the weight of humongous corruption and
irresponsible aloofness. Is there any ‘comprehensive investigation’ needed before
first writing to those, who have been indicted as being overpaid or paid without
delivering petroleum products, to refund those monies?
The party added that “ironically, though not unexpected from the PDP clan, the
indicted people, being the president’s acolytes, must be protected by enjoying ‘soft-
landing’ through the government’s unending ‘comprehensive investigation’. Indeed,
this infernal nonsense can continue, so long the Nigerian people allow it. We
believe, as Eli Wiesel said, “There may be times we are unable to prevent injustice;
there must NEVER be time that we fail to protest. This is the time for the Nigerian
people to protest and very loudly too.”
It posited that “the CPC, as a political Party, shall pitch tent with the Nigerian
people in their wholesome desire for a comprehensive and dispassionate
implementation of the Fuel subsidy probe report”, adding that anything short of this
is totally unacceptable.
-Chuks Ehirim, National Accord
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SNG, CPC allege plot to kill subsidy report
By CHUKS EHIRIM
Tuesday, May 08, 2012
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