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Why EFCC Can No Longer Prosecute Yahaya Bello-Onakpasa

by Silverbird News24

WHY THE EFCC CAN NO LONGER PROSECUTE YAHAYA BELLO, BY ONAKPASA

Hello my dear members of the All Progressives Congress.

Since the last adjournment of the case between the EFCC and our dear brother and fellow party member, former Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State, a lot of things have been said about the pronouncement of the court, goings-on and the people that have been haunting our dear brother have been going about saying all kinds of things.

You see, the funny things about this life is that what is is, what is not, is not.

The law is what it is, and according to the law, where there is a case, any case between any parties, those two parties are equal.

Now, where there is a criminal matter under the law, it is all of us as a society, as a state, versus the accused person.

Yet, all of us as a society, as a state, as a country, in that court of law, we are equal to that person, we are not more than that person and that person is not more than us.

That is how a forum, a court is fair.

Now, where a person has been charged to court, and the prosecutor, the prosecuting authority is so incompetent, so ridiculously incompetent, that the prosecuting authority says it is a personal matter, the head of the prosecuting authority says he will resign if he cannot jail the person, where a case is already in court and the prosecutor is so incompetent that while a matter is pending in court, he calls a press conference and starts litigating the case already before the court, in the court of public opinion, that authority has lost its right to prosecute such person.

Let me explain it to you.

You have to be fair in a forum.

By forum, you know it’s Latin, that is the court.

Everybody is equal there.

And you have charged someone to court.

You will respect the court; you don’t have a choice.

Who are you?

You will respect the court because it is the court that guarantees our civilization.

That is why we are not barbarians.

Because, tomorrow you can say Barrister Onokpasa chased my wife, go and cut his throat; no!

That is why we have courts.

You will take me to court.

It is like the nonsense they were saying about our President that he did this, he did that.

We defeated all of them in court.

Bola Tinubu defeated all of them in court.

In fact, our President disgraced all of them in court and I am proud to have been one of his lawyers.

So, we go to court because the court is the arbiter.

We do not subscribe to jungle justice and a prosecuting authority, a prosecutor, cannot undermine the authority of the court by unilaterally, while a matter is pending before a court of competent jurisdiction, and then he calls a press conference and people are hailing him and laughing … I mean, what a shame!

The evidence he ought to present in court, he starts presenting it before whoever he called for his so called press conference.

Well, according to the law, you now lose your authority to prosecute the person.

At this moment, according to law, the EFCC no longer has any right to prosecute Yahaya Bello.

That is the law.

We cannot have a government agency tarnishing the reputation of citizens.

We are citizens, we have rights for God’s sake.

We are not in a dictatorship.

In any civilized society, the court is paramount, otherwise, the society breaks down.

It breaks down, it collapses.

In constitutional law, we say Legislature, first arm of government; Executive, second arm of government; Judiciary, third arm of government.

That is not how they originated.

In fact, governance first crystalized at the level of the exercise of judicial functions.

It is there in the Holy Bible.

There were judges before there were kings.

Go and read your Bible.

There is a reason why we have courts.

Otherwise, somebody will just shout “thief”, “thief” and people will start to lynch him.

What nonsense!

Then, a government agency starts behaving like a mob.

What a shame!

You have charged a person to court, you will wait for the judicial process to take its course.

What we try to prevent in law is self-help.

In fact, the entire idea of the rule of law is to prevent self-help.

So, you and I are quarrelling, instead of me to carry machete or AK47 or rocket launcher to come after you, I will go to the Police first, that is why we have Police; I will sue you to court.

We do not undermine the court; that is what we call sub judice.

In fact, we should probe this EFCC.

They are so carried away.

They just feel they can intimidate anybody, as if everybody in the country is a crook.

We work hard in this country, we are not all thieves.

Unfortunately for the EFCC, they have so mismanaged this matter of Yahaya Bello.

It is not even a question of convicting him, they can’t prosecute him anymore.

On what basis?

Imagine if this is a jurisdiction where we have a jury trial, then, you have already castigated the man in public called him a thief, called him this and that.

The people that should be summoned for the jury, did they not hear it?

Have you not already poisoned their minds against the accused? You have!

How can you then prosecute me?

A citizen is the most powerful in a state.

That is the highest office in any country – the office of the citizen.

In fact, when Yahaya Bello was a governor, he was even a junior citizen because he was a servant.

Now that he is no longer a governor, he now occupies the office of a citizen and the government cannot tarnish his reputation.

You can’t be prosecuting him in court and then tarnishing his reputation in press conferences and engineering people to be making these ridiculous and stupid videos undermining the court, the Judiciary.

This is what we complained about and to imagine the EFCC doing this.

Sorry, you can no longer prosecute former governor Yahaya Bello.

Thank you.

My name is Barrister Jesutega Onokpasa.

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