Newspaper review: Buhari under attack over alleged bid to dock Saraki, Ekweremadu

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Newspaper headlines for Wednesday, June 22, have focused on the reality of the showdown between lawmakers and President Muhammadu Buhari.

This follows a report on Vanguard that judicial officials pasted summons on the Senate president Bukola Saraki and his deputy Ike Ekweremadu to appear before the Federal High Court on June 27.

The summons was pasted by way of substituted service, and it became the first time the two men were formally being notified of their prosecution, following alleged forgery of the Senate Standing Rules 2015.

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In a four-hour closed door session presided over by Senator Ekweremadu, the lawmakers pointed accusing fingers on President Muhmmadu Buhari, adding that he is turning into a dictator.

At the plenary session, the Senate in a unanimous resolution, summoned the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, to appear before its Committee on Judiciary within two days, even as senators across party lines affirmed that the Rule Book, allegedly forged, remains authentic.

The indignation in the Senate over the planned arraignment of Saraki, and Ekweremadu also spilled over to the House of Representatives, which in a similar resolution, called on Buhari to keep to the constitution in his decisions in order not to abort the nation’s democracy.

Similarly, the PDP caucuses in the Senate and House of Representatives, in separate meetings, also lambasted the Presidency, with the PDP senators resolving, henceforth, to stop all manner of cooperation with the All Progressives Congress, APC-led administration.

Still on the showdown between lawmakers and the presidency, Daily Sun reports that the Senate accused the Presidency of plotting to forcefully effect leadership change in the upper legislative chamber and describing President Muhammadu Buhari as too autocratic.

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The Red Chamber, which fingered President Buhari as being behind its travail since inauguration, warned that its good relationship with the executive arms of government should not be taken for granted.

This is even as Red Chamber unanimously declared that its 2015 Standing Rules were not forged.

According to a report on The Guardian, the PDP Governors’ Forum and the party’s caucus in the House of Representatives on Tuesday, June 21, seemed to have woken up to the realities of the threat facing the party and urged President Muhammadu Buhari to call the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to order to desist forthwith in their persecution of Senate President Bukola Saraki , his Deputy, Ike Ekweremadu and the Ekiti State Governor Ayo Fayose.

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While the forum chaired by the Governor Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo state asked that President Buhari should immediately intervene to rescue the country from what it described as the current gross abuse of the constitution, the PDP House of Representatives members rose from an emergency meeting vowing to resist any attempt to illegally remove them from office.

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The caucus while briefing newsmen in Abuja said the onslaught on the leadership of the upper legislative house, is an attempt to erode the independence of the legislature as enshrined in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Moving away from the Senate and Presidency showdown, The Punch has said the EFCC Tuesday, June 21, said it had made a breakthrough in how over $15bn was siphoned from the account of the office of the National Security Adviser during the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan.

The EFCC, which has frozen the bank accounts of the Governor Ayodele Fayose, and the account of a company, belonging to the two sons of a former Minister of State for Defence, Musiliu Obanikoro, said it had recovered evidence of the alleged illegal transactions from the banks.

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The bank tellers and other relevant documents, showed that the alleged scam took place between April 4, 2014, and December 15, 2014, when a total of N4.745bn was paid into the Diamond Bank account of Sylvan McNamara.

A document, made available to one of our correspondents showed that Sylvan McNamara was incorporated in November 2011, with the following people as directors: Ikenna Ezekwe, Idowu Oshodi and Elizabeth Adeniyi.

However, the company, on May 7, 2012, passed a resolution that it should open an account at Diamond Bank and have the following persons as signatories – Gbolahan Obanikoro, Babajide Obanikoro, Ikenna Ezekwe and Theresa Matuluko.

Babajide and Gbolahan are the sons of Musiliu Obanikoro, a former minister of State for Defence.

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A source at the EFCC said: “The entire fraud started from the company that Obanikoro’s sons were operating. The company was set up by some people but curiously made Obanikoro sons signatories to the account.”

Still on the anti-corruption war, The Nation reports that EFCC detectives have traced about N4.745billion of the diverted $2. 1billion arms cash to a former Minister of State (Defence), Musiliu Obanikoro and Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti state.

The cash was sourced from the SAS Imprest Account of the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) under ex-NSA Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.) prior to the conduct of the June 21, 2014 Ekiti state governorship election, according to an Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) investigation.

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Others linked with the sharing of the slush funds include Fayose’s associate, Abiodun Agbele(Alias Abbey); Mrs. Helen Olayemi Fayose; Obanikoro’s sons — Gbolahan and Babajide —  Ikenna Ezekwe; Sylvan Mcnamara Limited(a company allegedly  run by the Obanikoros); Spotless Hotel, owned by Fayose and De Privateer Limited, which is owned by  Agbele.

In other news, Former Super Eagles captain, Joseph Yobo, is set to add glamour to the Nigeria League, following an announcement by the League Management Company, LMC, on Tuesday that the 35-year-old will play the last 12 games of the season in the Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL, Complete Sports reports.

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The LMC, through its official twitter handle, said Yobo had been signed on as League Ambassador and would soon be assigned to one of the four clubs already bidding for his services.

The post Newspaper review: Buhari under attack over alleged bid to dock Saraki, Ekweremadu appeared first on Nigeria News today & Breaking news | Nigerian newspapers.

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