Nigerian govt files fresh charges against two senior judges accused of corruption

Justice Sylvester Ngwuta
Justice Sylvester Ngwuta

The Federal Government on Wednesday filed two separate charges against Supreme Court judge, Sylvester Ngwuta, and his Federal High Court counterpart, Adeniyi Ademola, at the Code of Conduct Tribunal, CCT, for alleged violations of the Code of Conduct Bureau, CCB, Act.

Mr. Ngwuta is already facing a separate corruption charge before the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court while Mr. Ademola is facing a separate corruption charge at the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory.

Salihu Isah, the spokesperson of the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, provided information on the fresh charges on Wednesday.

In a statement sent to PREMIUM TIMES, Mr. Isah said the office of the AGF filed an application at the Code of Conduct Tribunal, CCT, requesting it to commence trial of the two judges.

Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami PHOTO: Daily Trust
Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami
PHOTO: Daily Trust

The charges, according to the statement, were filed by the principal state counsel at the Federal Ministry of Justice, Hajara Yusuf, on behalf of the Attorney General, pursuant to Section 24 of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act.

“In the FG request to arraign Justice Ngwuta, the application averred that he engaged in private business as a public officer, contrary to Section 6(b) of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act. He is also alleged to have refused to declare his assets as a public officer contrary to Section 15 of the Code of Conduct Bureau Act, Cap C15 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 and Punishable under Section 23(2) of the same Act.

“Justice Ngwuta is expected to face a ten count charge. Part of the charges against him includes that; “between 2nd June 2011 and 19thJuly 2016 while serving as a Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria and within the Jurisdiction of this Honourable Tribunal, that Justice Ngwuta did make a false declaration of assets” to the CCB when he failed to declare three duplexes at Chinedu Ogah Avenue, Ntezi, Aba in Abakaliki, while being a Justice of the Supreme Court,” the spokesperson said.

In the second charge, Mr. Ngwuta is alleged to have made a false declaration to the CCB when he failed to declare 22 plots of land at Igwe Uga Avenue, Abakaliki, between the June 2, 2011 and July 19, 2016, while serving as a justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria

The third count states that he failed to declare six plots of land at Frank Okoroafor Avenue, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State.

Counts four to eight state that the judge failed to declare several vehicles including a Wrangler SUV, a Toyota SUV, and a BMW 5 series.

The ninth count states that, “between the 1st day of August 2014 and the 16thday of July 2015, Mr. Ngwuta received from Mr. Ogudu Nwadire, through his personal bank account numbered (0018113021) domiciled at Union Bank PLC, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, the total sum of Thirty-Six Million, Three Hundred and Ten Thousand Naira (NGN 36, 310,00.00) in the discharge of his official duties as a Judge of the Supreme Court of Nigeria and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15(3) of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act, Cap C15 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 and punishable under Section 23(2) of the same Act.”

The final count reads; “Sylvester Nwali Ngwuta between the 2nd June 2011 and 19th July 2016 in Abuja, while serving as a Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria and within the Jurisdiction of this Honourable Tribunal did engage in purchase and sale of rice, palm oil and other related products, while being a Justice of the Supreme Court and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 6 of the Code Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act, Cap C15 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 and punishable under Section 23(2) of the same Act.”

Mr. Isah said that in an affidavit to support the charge, Samuel Madojemu, who is Head, Investigation Division at the CCB, confirmed the said asset declaration by Mr. Ngwuta, which according to prosecution, was investigated and alleged offence discovered.

He said Mr. Madojemu confirmed that the asset declaration form was investigated upon by the CCB and the State Security Service.

Justice Adeniyi Ademola
Justice Adeniyi Ademola

The spokesperson said a two-count charge was proffered against Justice Ademola at the CCB for which an affidavit was also deposed to by Mr. Madojemu.

The first count states that, he failed to declare his asset to the Bureau, an offense contrary to Section 15 of the CCB and Tribunal Act, Cap C15 and punishable under Section 23(2) of the same Act, while the other count states that he engages and participates in private business contrary to Section 6 of the CCB and Tribunal Act and punishable under Section 23(2) of same Act.

According to the charge, Mr. Ademola is accused of engaging in the purchase and sale of foreign exchange currencies, while being a judge of the Federal High Court, and thereby committing an offence contrary to section 6 of the CCB and Tribunal Act.


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  • Crimes Watch

    NOBODY IS ABOVE THE LAW. The alleged violations by these indicted Supreme Court Judges
    should be vigorously prosecuted and steadfastly defended by the justices with equal vigour.
    It is in that adversarial system that the truth can be known for a fair decision to be reached.
    We must however the impression so far given by the morally dubious Buhari government.

    The impression so far has been that of targeted arrests; led in part by personal vendetta.
    That sort of bad impression must be dispelled but there’s only one way to dispel it totally.
    It is to bring all known cases of similar “violations of law” to justice with the same speed.
    The theft of over one trillion Naira at C.B.N under Sanusi Lamido is one such case.

    • Alkaliimaam

      The corruption BUHARI sweeps under carpet: CENTRAL BANK audit result

      • ₦38.23billion developed legs and got missing in Central Bank under Sanusi Lamido Sanusi.
      • ₦160billion was taken by Sanusi Lamido at the Central Bank for self-determined spending.
      • ₦1.12billion was taken as spent by Sanusi Lamido on lunch for 12 CBN police guards
      in one year.
      • ₦1.12billion was taken in cash and entered in the account as paid to a non-operating airline
      for charter service.
      • ₦240billion was discretionally doled out at will as ‘donations’ by Sanusi Lamido.
      • ₦1.97billion was paid out in cash and entered on Central Bank accounts as “inexplicable
      expense” by Sanusi Lamido Sanusi.
      • ₦20billion was entered as paid out in cash as Legal Fees by Sanusi Lamido to persons
      unknown.
      • ₦3.086billion was taken by Sanusi Lamido and written off as expense ostensibly to promote
      Central Bank image.

      • Law Americana

        @disqus_adrUdD9Atb:disqus

        NIGERIA IS A USELESS COUNTRY. No thinking takes place in the country. Half-idiots in charge
        of the executive, legislature and the judiciary have only olden sometimes forged or procured
        dilpomas or university certificates to show as alibi for their wholly empty heads, for otherwise
        anyone possessed of average intelligence should know that the contours of freedom of faith
        and religion in the 1999 constitution are within the bounds of places where faith and religion
        are practised, and, nowhere else. There is no right to wear Hijab into a surgery room.

        If only Nigerian Judges read and understand the meaning of the word “right”, but they don’t.
        Insouciant, corrupt, inarticulate and incoherent Judges of Nigerian courts do not reason
        from premiss to conclusion to know the difference between “liberty” and “right”; and so,
        like morons, the Judges get ahead of themselves to assimilate “interests” into “rights”
        – contrary to what the International Court of Justice enjoined in a decided case that
        thinking Judges of national courts must NOT do. But nonsense keeps on in Nigeria.
        Now there’s a right to wear the Islamic Hijab to the altar of a church at a wedding.

        The following Appeal court Judges imposed that nonsense rule on all non-Muslims, viz:

        • Justice A.B. Gumel
        • Justice M. Fasanmi
        • Justice A. Jauro
        • Justice J.S. Ikyegh
        • Justice I. Jombo Ofor.

        • Jayjay

          Law Americana:

          The Appeal Court decided today that all schools in Nigeria now have a duty
          to obey, and to escort to the classroom, any Muslim who appears in Hijab in
          violation of school regulation on school uniform. Is that any sensible way to
          reason, as if a school is a place of worship for pupils to come and practise
          their individual religion?

          These five judges have just imposed Islam
          on all secular schools in Nigeria. Is that a judiciary or just a plain daft
          courtroom? How can any sensible person impose Hijab on Christian Missionary
          schools which are funded entirely by a church? Our judges are so naïve they
          don’t know that hundreds of schools don’t even hold any prayer session at all,
          as secular schools.

          And you say these ones are judges?
          Okay O. Do they sound like judges to you? When people cannot reason properly
          can they be called judges at the same time? I am just asking, not judging O.

        • Public Rekord

          “Sharia should be introduced all over Nigeria. I will continue to show openly and inside me,
          the total commitment to the Sharia movement that is sweeping all over Nigeria. God willing,
          we will NOT stop the agitation for total implementation of Sharia in the country (Nigeria).
          It is a legal responsibility which God has given us, within the context of one Nigeria,
          to continue to uphold the practice of Sharia wholeheartedly. What remains for Muslims
          in Nigeria is for them to re-double their efforts and educate Muslims on the need to
          promote the full implementation of Sharia law.”

          …….General Muhammadu Buhari

          [August, 2001]

          • Akowaba333

            WHERE IS BUHARI’S 1961 WASC/CAMBRIDGE CERTIFICATE, WHERE IS IT?

            BLOODY AND SHAMELESS LIARS SETTING BAD EXAMPLES OF CRIMINALITY.

      • olutade

        What is your point?

    • Fola Timothy

      @disqus_adrUdD9Atb:disqus

      The idea that justice must be done
      and be seen to be done also means that every criminal case must be treated
      similarly. No matter how much punishment you give these Supreme Court justices,
      nobody will see the justice in comparison with other people’s crimes that are
      simply overlooked as if those who committed those other rimes are the sacred
      goats. No country can ever look honest by having double standards.

      • Julius

        So, they should wait until those you considered sacred goats are also charged and prosecuted ?. What country and the justice system do you know operate on that logic ?. By your “intellectual’ logic if a cop pull me over for any traffic offense I should tell him until he gives all the traffic offenders ticket, he should not issue me a ticket . Right ? I’m just trying to understand your argument because you post this often.

    • breakin’ news

      “Akinwunmi Ambode, the new governor of Lagos state, in August 2015 revoked
      the corrupt self-allocation of over 25 plots of land in Lekki by his predecessor
      – Raji Babatunde Fashola – in his own final days in office.

      Most of these plots were allocated to Raji Fashola’s own relatives, aides and associates —
      including Yewande Animashaun – his cousin who also served as his special adviser on public health,
      and Wale Ahmed, who served as his commissioner for special duties.

      A female newscaster with a Lagos-based TV station was one of the beneficiaries,
      The Cable learnt. The land was officially parceled into 25 plots and shared by
      Raji Fashola who went on to sign the certificates of occupancy on May 26,
      three days to his exit from office.”

      …………..THE CABLE NEWS

      • Ademola O. Akin-Williams

        @breakin’ news:

        Here was a dim governor, RAJI FASHOLA, who could not run the Lagos city BRT transport
        (which collapsed in just three [3] years under his incompetent watch) and who also
        failed to run schools to pass WASC examinations. Is that not the meaning of INCOMPETENCE,
        to start with – besides roguery? Or, what else is a state governor to do, majorly, other than run
        sensible school system and a state bus system in an orderly environment?

        Raji Fashola’s greed, roguery and incompetence have now almost destroyed the immediate future
        of Lagos state, besides the un-precedented debt of 3.7billion dollars (at the then exchange rate)
        he incurred and placed on the necks of Lagos residents.

        That’s a debt equivalent to forfeiting the next three (3) and half years
        of Lagos state revenues from federal allocation, without Raji Fashola building
        a single functioning public school to show for it, and that’s after blowing away 3.2 trillion Naira
        in gross revenue Lagos earned over 8 years which he then unlawfully understated stated in his
        handover note to Akin Ambode – as gross revenue of 2.34 trillion Naira – to conceal yet
        another likely theft of ₦800 billion due for EFCC investigation and prosecution.

  • Omooba Adekunle Orafidiya

    I believe these animals should be shot. But other corrupt Judges like Auta and Kafarati should not be excluded from prosecution because they are of northern stock.

  • Fantastic

    This is insecticide in action! Yesterday was deodorant in action.

    • Junior Advocate of Nigeria

      @disqus_IU5znOohb5:disqus

      S.A.N as a criminal title

      I am more concerned about the rate at which so-called Senior Advocates
      of Nigeria are being arrested for stealing and racketeering. I fear that by the
      end of the year all so-called Senior Advocates of Nigeria may be in jail. Quite
      a few have run away through bush path and fled the borders of Nigeria. A good
      few so-called Senior Advocates of Nigeria are now fugitives from justice,
      including Adoke Muhamed who may soon be arrested in his hiding place in a dark
      and dingy place in Europe. I am aware that another one, called Dele Belgore
      [S.A.N] has just been arrested today over 450 million Naira money-laundering.

      Two days ago, another one called Mike Ozekhome was in soup. A court of
      law froze his account for money- laundering. By and by the S.A.N title will
      unravel as a criminal title of dyed-in-the-wool financial criminals. Anyone
      seriously thinking ahead must join in shouting at the Nigerian Bar Association
      to ban holders of the chieftaincy title called S.A.N from attempting to train
      any new lawyer graduating from the law school. Our hands are full of enough of
      criminals bearing S.A.N title to have to cope with young lawyers inducted into
      stealing as a career by thieves bearing S.A.N. In fact, no fewer than ten (10)
      other so called Senior Advocates of Nigeria (S.A.N) have been docked in court to
      face high crimes charges of forgery and stealing. But that’s all the meaning of S.A.N.

      • Ess Esquire

        A TITLE FULL OF SOUND AND FURY; SIGNIFYING NOTHING BUT ROGUERY.

        MAY KNOWLEDGE TEACH NIGERIANS TO KNOW TRUTH FROM FALSEHOOD.

  • Spoken word

    These judges are not going to survive this.

    • duwdu

      Amen.

      P34c3
      ……..
      …..

  • Du Covenant

    The fact that the government is spending such amount of time to identify these scum of the earth shows how rotten Nigeria is. May God help us out of this quackmire!.

    • ::????????

      @ducovenant:disqus

      The loquacious adviser to President Buhari on anti-corruption,
      Professor Itse Sagay said last week that two retired Chief Justices of Nigeria
      are known to ferry bribes between accused criminals and Judges hearing their cases.
      On his admission of knowledge why is the media not asking the next question that those
      two ex chief justices be promptly arrested and arraigned. Or what’s the point of the talk
      by Professor Itse Sagay, if impunity will follow for those ex Supreme Court Chief Justices?

      • 222Politico

        @ducovenant:disqus

        IT IS GOOD TO BRING ALL CRIMINALS TO JUSTICE – NOT JUST A FEW CRIMINALS.
        RIGHT-THINKING NIGERIANS WILL NOT SUPPORT BUHARI’s SELECTIVE JUSTICE.

  • straight-to-the-point

    @ducovenant:disqus

    Justice Walter Onoghen: Let truth be told

    Let truth be told.
    Muhamadu Buhari is the worst mistake Nigerians ever made at the polls. At no
    time did Buhari intend to confirm Justice Onoghen as the Chief Justice if not for
    the articulate voices in Nigeria who screamed havoc. Buhari intended Justice
    Onoghen’s acting capacity to lapse, under the pretext he was abroad and could
    not send his name for confirmation until the deadline passed. Buhari then hid
    under the cover of interminable investigation of Justice Onoghen since October
    last year.

    Whereas till today, Buhari’s primary school
    education is the only completed certificate he’s been able to show after
    20 months in office. He lied and lied and caused others to lie on his behalf
    that it was the innocent Nigerian Army that hid away his Wasc/Gce certificate
    from his files. Now that he himself is the commander in chief of the same army,
    where is the 1961 Wac/Gce certificate? He’s crookedly stopped talking about it
    having swindled millions of voters to wave brooms to usher in a near-illiterate
    as the elected president of Nigeria. What a country!

    • Wolexit 2017

      THOSE WHO ENABLED BUHARI TO POWER – INCLUDING SANUSI LAMIDO AND GENERAL OBASANJO
      HAVE LOST A RIGHT TO BE HEARD IN NIGERIA FOR THEIR OWN ALMOST SENSELESS JUDGMENT,
      BECAUSE ANYONE WHO DETERMINES THAT A PRIMARY SIX CERTIFICATE HOLDER IS BEST FOR
      NIGERIA CAN NEVER COME OUT AGAIN IN PUBLIC AND EXPECT TO BE TRUSTED AS SENSIBLE.

  • Ewens Lawson

    Rubbish!!!…….I am of strong conviction that Buhari’s only offence is his insistence that thingss must done correctly. I feel sorry for those who think we will return to the status-quo where irresponsibility was the order of the day. Buhari is the best for the country.

  • Gerald Okoduwa

    As far as suppoters of corruption are concerned, this is not enough to ‘protest’ about. But they are quick to condemn the effects of corruption in our socio-economic manifestations. A doctor who treats the effects of an ailment without addressing the cause is only inviting his patient back to the clinic. See the magnitude of a case that the Judiciary is asking the culprits to go on bail on self recognition just because they are Judges. No one should be surprised that these Judges will not go to jail as their comrades still in service are hell bent on thwarting the cases.

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