Abubakar Malami Unveils 300 ‘Powerful’ Boko Haram Sponsors
How Nigeria’s Attorney-General Malami Released Over 300 ‘Powerful’ Boko Haram Sponsors After Collecting Bribes, Retaining Only Foot Soldiers NewsReport gathered.
The Nigerian government has released over 300 suspects arrested for funding Boko Haram terrorists.
In April, SaharaReporters reported that security agencies arrested over 400 people during a nationwide crackdown on suspected terrorist financiers in Nigeria.
President Muhammadu Buhari was said to have approved the operation in 2020.
However, Malami, who is in the US as part of Buhari’s entourage to the United Nations General Assembly, stated on Wednesday that his office had reviewed over 1,000 case files, 285 of which had been filed before the Federal High Court.
Malami was responding to public outrage over the secrecy surrounding the identities of Boko Haram’s alleged financiers, as Buhari’s government has refused to name the terror sponsors.
The United Arab Emirates recently published the names of 38 terrorist sponsors, six of whom are Nigerians.
SaharaReporters published a list of 45 names earlier on Thursday, out of the 400 suspects accused of sponsoring terrorists.
However, according to a source, the 45 suspects are “insignificant foot soldiers of terror financiers” who have been detained under an ex parte order while others have been released.
Documents, including an affidavit, were obtained exclusively by SaharaReporters in support of a motion filed by the prosecution (Nigerian government) to seek the continued detention of the suspects at “Wu Bassey Barracks, Asokoro, Abuja for 90 days pending the conclusion of investigations by the headquarters of the Nigerian Army Intelligence Corps.”
The affidavit deposed to at the Federal High Court Registry by a litigation officer in the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions of the Federation says: “The suspects were arrested by troops of Operation Lafia Dole in Kaduna, Kano, Niger, Borno, Lagos, and Zamfara states in relation to terrorism activities in the country.
“Ongoing investigation revealed that the suspects have links with the Boko Haram Terrorist Group. That the investigation is advancing and suspects have access to legal practitioners of their choice. That it is in the interest of justice that the suspects be remanded pending the conclusion of the investigation as there are chances that the investigation will be compromised if the suspects are released on bail. That the court has the power to grant the application.”
Those detained as earlier exclusively published by SaharaReporters include Saidu Ahmed, Ibrahim Sani Bello, Mustapha Musa Adamu, Abubakar Sadiq Garba, Hussein Adamu, Muhammed Sani Adam, Abdulrahman Ibrahim, Ghazali Yusuf, Yusuf Ali Yusuf, Abubakar Adamu Yellow, Zahuraddeen Bashir, Haruna Garba Garo, Ibrahim Aliyu Usman, Hassan Idris, Musa Emma, Alhashim Mohammed Almashim, Baba Samaila, Bulama Tahir, Abubakar Ali, Mohammed Ambare, Danlami Hassan Nadabo, Danladi Talle Inuwa, Bashir Ali, and Mansur Muhammad Usman.
Others are Musa Tasiu Ya’u, Auwalu Ali Alhassan, Sadi Saidu Abdullahi, Suraj Adamu, Muhammed Auwalu, Ismaila Abdullaziz Mohammed, Munzali Ashiru Gambo, Yazid Muhammad Usman, Nabil Zakari, Gambo Auwalu, Muhammed Abba, Bashir Idris Shuaibu, Mohammed Yahaya, Auwalu Ibrahim, Abdullahi Umar Usman, Dahiru Umar Mohammed, Abdullahi Mohammed, Abubakar Yahaya, Hussaini Lawali Idrisu, Ladann Ibrahim, and Nurudeen Gani Aliyu.
A security source told SaharaReporters on Thursday that Malami ordered the release of the “big fish” or prominent and powerful ones among the 400 suspects initially arrested after collecting bribes from them.
The source added that those being detained are “insignificant foot soldiers”.
“We arrested about 400 of them but he collected bribes from the most powerful ones and they have since been released. Yesterday (Wednesday), he claimed there were 275 of them left, in an interview he had in New York. Most of the 275 he mentioned have also been freed.
“Some powerful Northern Emirs intervened on their behalf. Only an ex parte order to detain were filed against these 45 persons before Justice Anwulika Chikere of the Federal High Court, Abuja. Unfortunately, she was a vacation judge and has now traveled.
“She is retiring in about three months’ time. Only about 45 names were submitted to her instead of 275 the Minister claimed yesterday. These are all the strategies being used by Malami who has already left the big terror financiers off the hook.
“The 45 persons are insignificant foot soldiers of terror financiers. And if you check the documents very well, most of them have already filed fundamental rights challenges against the government and are billed to be granted bail anytime soon.
“That Honorable Justice Anwulika Chikere handling the case was born on 28th December 1956, so she is bound to take a bow on December 28, 2021, which is just three months from now.”
And going by documents exclusively obtained by SaharaReporters, most of the suspects currently being detained have already filed Fundamental Rights challenges and are billed to be granted bail.
Though the documents also contain a list of the names of 45 suspected sponsors of terrorism, there is nothing to show that any charges have been filed against them since their arrest.
Confirming that even the suspects currently being held will also regain their freedom, another source said, “Don’t forget that no one has been charged according to the documents; the ex parte filed contained zero evidence they carried out anything. They are billed to be granted bail.”