The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has has given the Presidency a 72-hour ultimatum to respond to allegations on the source of President Muhammadu Buhari’s 2015 campaign fund.
In a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, the PDP said instead of the APC and the Presidency to respond to allegations on how the ruling party’s 2015 presidential campaign was funded, “they are busy listing individuals whose cases are before the courts as “looters.
“It is evidently clear that the APC, the Federal Government and the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, are running away from the issue of how they raised money to install Buhari as president.
“They have pressed the panic button and resorted to unfounded allegations against PDP members; just to divert the attention of Nigerians and the international community from their government.
“The PDP will not join the APC and the federal government in their resort to engage in matters that are subjudice because we believe and respect the Rule of Law, particularly, as it concerns the rights of every citizens,” the PDP said.
Meanwhile, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN ), Chief Ferdinand Orbih, has described the federal government’s action of releasing names of alleged looters, who are still in court, as bad faith.
The senior lawyer said such people who are still undergoing trial over corruption allegations are presumed innocent until the cases against them are proven as enshrined in the 1999 Constitution, as amended.
“For the Federal Government to label as looters, persons who are undergoing trial over corruption allegations is totally irresponsible. So, without pronouncement of court of competent jurisdiction, government action on the matter could be totally regarded as irresponsible.”
Chief Orbih reiterated that the federal government does not understand what the rule of law entails or the dynamics of due process.
“The case against (Senator) Nenadi Usman is still pending in court. The federal government that has labeled her as a looter of public funds is yet to prove the allegations against her in court. Government, by taking this matter to the court of public opinion, is making a strong statement, either that it has no confidence in the process it initiated in court or it is calculated to arm-twist the Judiciary; to convict at all costs.
“Either way, the publication by the federal government portends grave danger to democracy and the rule of law. Surely, there will be a legal response to this executive gross misbehavior,” said Orbih.