The Attorney General and Minister of Justice Mr. Malami Abubakar may be facing some tough times on how to save his job as an anti-corruption group has asked the President to remove him from office.
In a petition titled; “DEMAND FOR THE URGENT REMOVAL OF MR. MALAMI ABUBAKAR (SAN) AS ATTORNEY GENERAL AND MINISTER OF JUSTICE,” and addressed to President Muhammadu Buhari on the 20th of May, 2016, the group stated thus; “We at the Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders (CACOL) wish to demand your immediate replacement of Mr. Malami Abubakar as the Attorney General and Minister of Justice of this country to safe your government and the country from further embarrassment and criticisms.”
According to the petition signed by Debo Adeniran, Executive Chairman, CACOL, he said; “The mantra of this government and one of the campaign cardinal points of your party is ‘fight against corruption’. For any government to succeed in its policies, programmes and agenda, the commitment, professionalism, soundness and integrity of the Chief Law Officer of that government must be impeccable and consistent. We are afraid, based on recent happenings, the current Attorney General and Minister of Justice has fallen short of these critical requirements and incapable of delivering any fundamental departure from the corruption ridden past of governance in the country.”
“Mr. President, you will remember that the report of police investigation into the alleged forgery of 2015 Senate Standing Order by some Senators and staff of the Senate was reported to have been submitted to the Government and a DPP’s advice was issued on July 29, 2015, demanding prosecution of certain persons and officers. According to Punch Newspaper report of Monday May 9, 2016, page 2, “the legal advice with reference number DPPA/ADV/258/15 recommended that some suspects be prosecuted for criminal conspiracy, forgery, breach of official trust and unlawful assembly”. The Minister of Justice, since the assumption of office has consciously and deliberately refused to give effect to the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) advice. According to the same newspaper report, Mr. Malami promised Nigerians a decision on this matter within a week as at 2nd of January, 2016 but failed to do anything. It has taken the indicting report of Punch Newspaper in reference for the Attorney General to issue an ultimatum to both Police and DPP’s office for necessary action,” the petitioners averred.
“Again, your Excellency will recall the unnecessary and unwarranted controversy that surrounded the subterranean role of the Minister in the Nigerian Communication Commission NCC fine against the MTN. The Minister was accused of meeting and reaching agreements with MTN without involvement or representatives from the NCC. The Attorney General was publicly accused of meeting, negotiating, agreeing terms and collecting N50 billion on behalf of the government without recourse to both the regulatory agency and supervisory ministry. Local and international criticisms greeted the unprofessional conduct of the Minister and secrecy associated with his negotiation with MTN.
Also, the Federal House of Representatives had within its Constitutional Mandate, ordered the Inspector General of Police to seal the Kogi State of House of Assembly, so as to forestall further breakdown of law and order in the crisis bedeviled Parliament. In a suspicious move and conspiracy between the IGP and Attorney General, an advice of was sorted from AGF by the IGP, leading to the AGF directing the IGP otherwise, almost setting the tone for unnecessary conflict between the Executive and Legislative arms of government. But for the maturity of the timely intervention of the House Representatives, the crisis of Kogi State House of Assembly could have degenerated to fracas similar to Rivers State House of Assembly in 2016, CACOL said.”
Relaying out the sins of the Attorney General, CACOL said; “Again, contrary to constitutional provision on the Independence of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Mr. Malami eroded that constitutionally guaranteed independence by dictating to INEC on the constitutional challenge arising from the sudden death of Kogi State gubernatorial candidate, Abubakar Audu. That meddlesomeness attracted wide condemnation from observers and opposition parties.
The Minister, on behalf of the government engaged the service and allegedly violated the terms of agreement with an ex-convict, Mr. Georg Uboh. You were reported to have queried the Attorney General over this transaction, in which the Minister was accused of underhand dealings, conspiracy and corruption. Meanwhile, it is surprising to read the Attorney General claiming ignorance of Mr. Uboh’s criminal background. His office supervises anti-corruption agencies in the country and could have extracted criminal records of any person or organisation. This clearly shows there might be other embarrassing negligence committed by the AGF.”
CACOL stated thus; “Your Excellency, just like his failure to prosecute those behind the forgery of Senate Standing Rule, the office of Attorney General has failed to prosecute those implicated in electoral violence in 2015. This is contrary to your directive to the INEC chairman at the inauguration of the new INEC board.
Finally, we have it on good authority that the office of the Attorney General is accused by international partners of sabotaging their efforts at repatriating recovered looted funds. The case involving Malabu oil is a classic example. Whereas some NGOs have succeeded in freezing remnant amount in the deal in the United Kingdom, all efforts at getting the AGF to facilitate the repatriation of this fund via an official letter from his office have proved abortive in the last 7 months.”
According to CACOL it said; “Mr. President, it is on the strength of above listed allegations and infractions that we demand your immediate action on the removal and replacement of Mr. Malami Abubakar as the Attorney General and Minister of Justice.”