Tuesday, 24 November 2015

How Judges Frustrate Anti-Corruption War – President Buhari

Buhari Accuses Judges Of Delaying Corruption Cases...
President Muhammadu Buhari has accused Judges of frustrating his efforts to recover funds stolen by previous government.

While opening the 2015 All Nigeria Judges’ Conference in Abuja on November 23, the president, who was represented by his vice Yemi Osinbajo, blamed corrupt lawyers and judges for sabotaging his efforts to recover stolen assets.

Buhari said he was disturbed that more than ever before, “allegations of judicial corruption have become more strident and frequent.”

The president said: “Further on point of negative perception, there is both local and international dissatisfaction with the long delays in the trial process. In the past few years, this has become especially so for high-profile cases of corruption, especially where they involve serving or former political office holders.

“As my lords are undoubtedly aware, corruption transfers from public coffers to private pockets, resources required to deliver social and economic justice.

“Government’s attempts to recover such assets in accordance with the law are often faced with dilatory tactics by lawyers sometimes with the apparent collusion of judges.

“These tactics are often not directed at reaching any conclusion or affirming innocence or guilt, but at stalling trials indefinitely, thus denying the state and the accused person the opportunity of a judicial verdict. I wish to echo the sentiments of the vast majority of Nigerians in saying that we cannot afford to continue on this path.”

The president called for a reform of the justice sector, saying that he was unaware of the fact that delays or outright inaction in some high-profile corruption cases are the consequences of careless probes, outmoded rules of procedure, poor prosecution etc.

President Buhari visited Iran for gas summit and is expected back to Nigeria on November 24, Tuesday.

Since his inauguration on May 29, Buhari is committed to recovering billions of dollar misappropriated and siphoned out of the country by former government officials.

Officials from the United States and other European countries promised support in Buhari’s bid to repatriate funds stolen from Nigeria.