- There are alleged plots by agencies of the Federal Government to raid the residence of the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu
- This claim was made by a civil rights organisation, Human Rights Association of Nigeria (HURIWA)
- Ekweremadu has been having a running battle with federal agencies for a while
The Human Rights Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has alleged that there are plots by agencies of the Federal Government to raid the residence of the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu.
The allegation was made in a statement sent to Legit.ng on Saturday, March 31, signed by the national coordinator of HURIWA, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko.
The group alleged plots by agencies of the federal government to raid Ekweremadu's residence during or after the pubic holidays.
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HURIWA said it had it on good authority that the Federal Government, on Thursday, March 29, sought a warrant to search the Enugu-born senator’s home during the holiday, but no judge appended a signature to it since there was no affidavit to support the request.
“Ordinarily, there would have been no cause for concern when government does its work dispassionately, professionally, not a politically-induced manhunt.
“We recall that the Nigeria Police Force raided and ransacked Senator Ekweremadu’s official guest house in Abuja in Gestapo manner on May 27, 2017.
"Instructively, it came three weeks after he raised an alarm in Senate plenary over a planned raid of a building associated with him allegedly to plant and ‘discover’ foreign currencies of various denominations to incriminate and prosecute him.
“It is also noteworthy that the raid of his official guest house took place in the absence of any of his aides, but nothing was found and thank God for timely media report. Although the police initially denied the raid, it later admitted it, but blamed it on supposed false whistle-blower whom they arraigned in a face-saving trial,” the group said.
It said the current information deserved the attention of every lover of Nigeria’s democracy, especially in view of the recent harassment of the senator by the Federal Government's Special Presidential Investigation Panel on the Recovery of Public Property.
“We also have it that agencies of the federal government have also been harassing the senator’s bankers and account officers during the passing week, while the EFCC has written the Clerk to the National Assembly, demanding Ekweremadu’s earnings from 2003 that he joined the Senate till date, all in the continued frantic hunt for incriminating evidences to nail him” it stated.
“Whereas, HURIWA has no problems with government carrying out the responsibilities for which it exists in the first place, we frown at manifest political witch-hunt, misuse of government agencies, intimidation, and smear campaign, which should have no place in a democratic society.
“We are particularly worried over a possible repeat of the manner of raid on the senator’s house last year as it left several legal and commonsensical loopholes that could be capitalized to frame up anybody.
“Democracy thrives on a viable opposition and voices of dissent, hence we, once again, warn against bourgeoning political intolerance, abuse of power, and intimidation of the opposition, especially with 2019 general elections by the corner,” HURIWA added.
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Meanwhile, Senator Ekweremadu has asked the Federal High Court in Abuja to dismiss an application filed by the Federal Government seeking the forfeiture of his 22 houses in Nigeria and abroad.
In a motion filed before the court, Ekweremadu argued that the Special Presidential Investigation Panel for the Recovery of Public Property lacks legal powers to file a suit for the forfeiture of his houses.
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