The Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, has accused President Muhammadu Buhari’s Special Assistant on Prosecution, Okoi Obono-Obla, of stealing and manipulating his will.
Mr. Ekweremadu in a statement on Monday said Mr. Obono-Obla in connivance with a former Chief Judge of Enugu State, Innocent Umezulike, and a lawyer, Tagbo Ike, broke into the probate registry to steal the document.
He said the trio stole his will, leaving behind a photocopy which had in it imaginary properties.
Mr. Ekweremadu said the presidential aide has started a campaign to smear his reputation using an online medium.
The statement which he titled “This Too Shall Pass” was signed by his Special Adviser on Media, Uche Anichukwu.
“There has been a sustained smear campaign against my person by Mr. Okoi Obono-Obla, using Sahara Reporters, and other unsuspecting media outfits in the past few weeks.
“I would have continued to ignore them, but for the concern of my well-wishers. Therefore, the public may wish to know as follows:
“About July 2016, former Chief Judge of Enugu State, Hon. Justice Innocent Umezulike, in his capacity as the Chief Judge of Enugu State at the time, together with his lawyer, and Barrister Tagbo Ike, in connivance with some politicians, broke into the Probate Registry, Enugu, took away my will, and left behind a photocopy.
“They copied the properties listed in the will and added many imaginary properties and started churning out baseless petitions to government agencies and officials,” the statement read.
Mr. Ekweremadu’s reference could be some stories SaharaReporters published recently.
On March 1, the medium published a story on how the ownership of two high-end London properties valued at £4million was traced to Mr. Ekweremadu.
Also in March, SaharaReporters published a petition written by Mr. Umezulike, asking the National Security Adviser (NSA), Babagana Monguno, to order the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to probe how Mr. Ekweremadu acquired 32 choice properties in Nigeria and abroad.
Mr. Umezulike said Mr. Ekweremadu’s lifestyle and the properties he has acquired are not justified by his source of income and should be probed under Section 7 (1) (b) of the EFCC Act.
Mr. Ekweremadu faulted the accuracy of the petition but kept mum on the allegations.
“In their petition to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, for instance, they claimed, in a demonstration of gross ignorance, that I was given money by the Federal Government to develop the South East geopolitical zone, but that I used it to purchase 32 properties.
“They sent similar petitions to Mr. President, the Vice President, Senate President, Attorney-General of the Federation, Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, Code of Conduct Bureau, Director-General of the Department of State Security, Inspector-General of Police, Commissioner of Police (Enugu), among others.
“I do not intend to respond, for now, to the smear campaign related to the 2019 election, which is spearheaded by Okoi Obono-Obla, using Sahara Reporters. I will speak more on this subject at the appropriate time.
“For now, let me state that Justice Innocent Umezulike has since been dismissed from service by the National Judicial Council and is facing trial in different courts. God is also on top of the matter in several other ways in the life of Justice Umezulike’s.
“It suffices to add that with what is unfolding now, the current smear campaign championed by Mr. Okoi Obono-Obla, is helping to expose those, who acted with Justice Umezulike, to steal my will. They have been peddling this so-called ‘discovery’ since July 2016.
“Umezulike has also, in several other petitions, attacked myself and my family. He also, at some point, accused me of killing several people, which the office of the Inspector-General of Police investigated; and probably, he will soon face appropriate charges bordering on false information.
“Let me, therefore, call on all those, who are concerned about this smear campaign, not to worry. This too shall pass. History will vindicate the just and the wicked will never go unpunished.”
PREMIUM TIMES has yet to get Mr. Obono-Obla’s reaction to this allegation as he did not respond to calls and messages to his phone.