ALLEGED CHRISTIANS’ PERSECUTION: FG TACKLES US SENATORS FOR SEEKING RE-DESIGNATION OF NIGERIA – DAILY TRUST PG.4, PUNCH PG. 14, NATIONS PG. 4
The Federal Government yesterday condemned the call by five US Republican senators asking for re-designation of Nigeria as a country of particular concern because of alleged persecution of Christians. The senators, who made the call in a letter to the US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, also alleged violation of freedom of Christians’ rights to practice their religion. Responding to the allegation in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in London, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, said the call was based on false premise and misunderstanding of what was going on in Nigeria. NAN reports the minister is in London for engagements with international media as well as some relevant non-governmental-organizations.
LAWYERS SET AGENDA FOR ACTING CJN – DAILY TRUST PG.26
On June 27, the Nigerian judiciary witnessed the inauguration of Justice Olukayode Ariwoola as the acting Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), which has led to suggestions on the way forward for the nation’s judiciary. The acting CJN assumed office at a turbulent period in the nation’s judiciary’s hierarchy with 14 justices of the Supreme Court making public allegations of corruption and neglect of the welfare of judicial officers. Speaking after his inauguration, Justice Ariwoola, while responding to President Muhammadu Buhari’s admonition not to fail the people in the upcoming 2023 general elections, promised to abide by the country’s constitution in his functions, while also assuring on resolving the issues contained in the letter written by the justices.
MONEY LAUNDERING: ICPC PROBES COMPLETED, UNOCCUPIED HOUSING ESTATES IN ABUJA, LAGOS, PORT HARCOURT – THIS DAY PG. 6
The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), yesterday, revealed that it had commenced investigation into completed but unoccupied housing estates in Abuja, Lagos, and Port Harcourt, suspected to be conduits for money laundering. ICPC also accused members of the Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN) of failure to pay counterpart funding for loans obtained from the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) to deliver infrastructure for mass housing projects, where members, instead, sold the plots to the highest bidder.
EX-CJN’S RESIGNATION: CDD LINKS S’COURT’S CRISIS TO ALLEGED EXECUTIVE’S INTERFERENCE – THIS DAY PG. 12
A social right group, the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD), has claimed that the recent resignation of the former Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN). Justice Ibrahim Muhammad could not be disconnected from alleged interference by the Executive arm of government. The group, in a statement, alleged that, “There is strong evidence of the Executive getting involved in activities that interfere with the independence of the judiciary.” It listed several high-profile mid-night attacks on the houses of senior judicial officers, including justices of the Supreme Court, the circumstances surrounding the resignation of Muhammad’s predecessor, Justice Walter Onnoghen, amongst others as indications of Executive’s involvement in the harassment and intimidation of the judiciary.
N1.8BN, CARS, OTHER PROPERTY RECOVERED BY ICPC NOT MINE –BURATAI – DAILY SUN PG.4
The former Chief of Army Staff (COAS) and Ambassador to Benin Republic, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, has distanced himself from the seized property, including N1.8 billion, by the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), in a property in Abuja. The anti-corruption agency had, in a statement on June 14, disclosed that its operatives raided a house in Wuse 2, Abuja, belonging to the owner of K Salam Construction Company, a military contractor. The Commission said it recovered money and other items from the property viz. N175,706,500; $220,965; G-Wagon; 2022 editions of BMW and Mercedes Benz cars; customised mobile phones; several designer wrist watches, including three Rolexes, and some property documents