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N27BN SCAM: EFCC rearrests jailed police pension boss, slams fresh criminal charges on him •As NLC demands retrial

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has re-arrested a former deputy director of the Police Pension Office, Mr John Yakubu Yusuf, who was jailed by an Abuja High Court on Monday.

Commission’s spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, confirmed his arrest.

It was gathered that Yusuf was picked up by the operatives of the commission from his Abuja home last night and had since been detained at the commission’s facility in Abuja.

It was also learnt that a fresh criminal charge had been preferred against him and already filed at the registry of the Federal High Court in Abuja.

Uwujaren confirmed the filing of the fresh suit and when asked when the convict would be having another day in court, he said “soon.”

It could not be confirmed if he was still being detained as of press time as Uwujaren said he was out of town and could not establish whether he was on administrative bail or still in detention.

A source in the commission said he might be going to court straight from the commission’s custody, signaling the possibility of his detention before appearing in court.

When Uwujaren was asked if charging the convict again would not amount to double jeopardy, he stated that, “wait until you see the new charge before anyone would decide whether it is the same thing with the first one which formed the basis of his conviction.”

The commission had condemned the judgment of Justice Abubakar Talba which gave Yusuf an option of N750,000 after pleading to an amended 3-count charge of theft of N27 billion police pension fund.

Meanwhile, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) demanded on Tuesday, that the convicted pension thief must be retried! saying that the judgment lacked moral values and had not demonstrated that laws and judicial institutions were capable of protecting the interest of ordinary people as well as safeguard national interests.

In a statement released by the NLC in Abuja, on on Tuesday and signed by a Deputy President of the NLC, Comrade Kiri Mohammed, who is currently acting as the NLC President, the congress said that such judgment portended danger for democracy anywhere in the world.

If the judgment is allowed to stay, Comrade Mohammed said it would be a direct encouragement for corruption and corrupt officials who would not mind deepening their stealing zeal knowing that the punishment they would face would be soft and harmless.

“We are startled at the judgment by an Abuja High court on Monday which convicted a man who already admitted stealing N23 billion out of over N40billion found to have been stolen from the coffers of the Nigeria Police Pension Fund between January 2008 and June 2011 to just two years in prison with an option of fine in the sum of N750,000.

“That Justice Abubakar Talba could only convict such a high profile thief who has enriched himself with money reserved for people who have served this country honestly and have retired into abject poverty and penury to a scandalous two years imprisonment with an option of fine in the ridiculous sum of N750, 000, shows clearly that the Nigerian judiciary is being compromised and obviously encouraging corruption in a country that has lost most of her earnings to a few individuals who have used their public offices to corruptly enrich themselves,” he said.

Tunde Oyesina And Soji Eze Fagbemi-Abuja


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