Attack on lawyer’s residence, attempt to thwart ₦3.8billion unexecuted Amnesty contract suit—Group alleges


Ex-militant leaders under the aegis of the Reintegrated Ex-Militants Forum {REF) have attributed last Wednesday’s armed attack on a home located in Kubwa Extension II area of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to an attempt to assassinate one of the lawyers involved in the ongoing suit at the Federal High Court over alleged unexecuted contracts with links to the vandalized ₦60billion Presidential Amnesty Programme Training Complex in Boro-Town, Kaiama, Bayelsa State.

According to the group, the targeted lawyer who is representing the 124 beneficiaries of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP) in court asked the court to be joined in stopping the illegal payment of over ₦3.8billion to fifteen (15) companies over alleged unexecuted contracts.

The armed attack on the residence of the lawyer in Kubwa Extension II area of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) left one security guard dead and three others injured.

The ex-militant leaders under the aegis of the Reintegrated Ex-Militants Forum {REF), in a petition to President Muhammadu Buhari, National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Mohammed Monguno (rtd.), Department of State Security (DSS), and Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Usman Alkali Baba, alleged that despite the fact that the targeted lawyer survived due to his presence at the last Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Conference in Lagos, the attempt is condemnable and should be investigated.

The 124 Amnesty Beneficiaries had applied to be joined in the suit filed by Jacob Aminu Momoh and fifteen (15) contracting firms against the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP) to pay for alleged unexecuted contracts above the tune of ₦3.8billion, plus 21 percent post–judgment fees and special damages which can go as high as ₦5billion to ₦8billion.

They have also accused officials of the Federal Ministry of Justice led by the Solicitor-General of the Federation and Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Justice, Mrs Beatrice Jedy-Agba, of colluding with Jacob Aminu Momoh and the accused companies in an alleged attempt to frustrate their suit at the courts.

The Reintegrated Ex-Militant Forum (REF), in the petitions signed by its National Coordinator, former ‘General’ Tony Ebikalaide also known as “Black Spider” and made available to newsmen in Yenagoa at the weekend, stated that “the lawyer had in a few days prior to the day of the incident spotted a black Range Rover tailing him and had received a phone call from the petitioner’s (Jacob Aminu Momoh) legal team to ascertain his whereabouts for service, but events turned for the worst during the early hours of the morning, on Wednesday, 24th August 2022. Alleged hired assassins wearing face masks stormed the secured residence of the lawyer in a community in Kubwa, F.C.T. Abuja and neutralized four security guards with one dead and three in critical condition.

“Despite the resistance, they refused to retreat, rather they forced their way into the secured building and broke down the front door of the lawyer’s home while shouting ‘where is the lawyer?! Where is the Barrister?!’ the scared lawyer’s wife was home alone because the Barrister was still in Lagos after the NBA Conference, but when they could not find the lawyer, they took a few items worth less than ₦10,000 to make it look like a robbery, and with the increasing noise outside, they hurriedly departed the premises.”

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Ebikalaide stated that, according to the lawyer, “in the seven years of his living in that community, and in their secured building, that was the first time in that community that such a tragedy had occurred, and it’s not a coincidence that his compound, especially his house, in particular, was attacked. He said he has neighbours all around his building, and there are multiple bigger homes and compounds without any fences or security barriers before getting to his compound and building. But they chose his building and house in particular while shouting ‘where is the lawyer, where is the Barrister?’ to his scared wife who was home alone.”

Ebikalaide also pointed out that, “it was on that same evening, Wednesday, 24th August 2022 that Professor Charles Quaker Dokubo, the former Coordinator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP) died, “It might interest the general public to know that the lawyer representing the 124 Amnesty beneficiaries against the ₦3.8billion suit in alleged unexecuted Amnesty contracts had planned to subpoena Prof. Charles Dokubo to testify in court on how he signed and awarded the multi-billion naira contract to the plaintiffs without passing through due process and using doctored documents. Well, it is unfortunate that Prof. Dokubo will not be able to speak about these approvals anymore.”

The REF also accused the staff of the Federal Ministry of Justice of alleged suspicion of compromise to frustrate the suit filed by the ex-militant leaders to prevent the illegal payment for unexecuted contracts above the tune of ₦3.8billion, plus 21 percent post–judgment fees, and special damages which can go as high as ₦5billion to ₦8billion.

“The officials in the judiciary are busy sabotaging the Amnesty office’s efforts in court by redeploying experienced legal officers from the Amnesty office in order to deprive the Amnesty office from putting in proper representation in court.

Attack on lawyer's residence, attempt to thwart ₦3.8billion unexecuted Amnesty contract suit—Group alleges

“At present, the Presidential Amnesty Programme, such a delicate federal government intervention agency, has no Legal Adviser nor any experienced legal officer at a time when there are pending cases worth billions of naira that could bankrupt the Programme. While the legal team of the 124 Amnesty beneficiaries are submitting genuine documents in court to defend the cases, the plaintiffs are boasting of compromising officials in the ministry of justice and anti-corruption agencies, detailing their non-remittance of Pension funds of over 200 Amnesty consultants in over two years.

“In a previous petition submitted to the EFCC, the petitioners stated with documented evidence of alleged suspension of payments into the Retirement Savings Accounts of the consultants even though the 18 percent deductions were deducted from the consultant’s salaries. The result of these inglorious acts amounts to a breach of the Pension Act 2004 cited above, with dire consequences. The EFCC refused to act despite the consultants’ Pension funds non-remittance documents submitted to them.”

The Reintegrated Ex-Militant Forum (REF) in their petition to the President, vowed to take matters into their own hands in the way they “know best,” because they claim to have lost faith in the security agencies to do their jobs without being compromised by alleged criminals. They also vowed to have a “showdown with officials of the Federal Ministry of Justice.

“These conspirators have refused to leave our Amnesty business alone for us. They conspired in a failed assassination attempt to assassinate a peaceful lawyer that is doing his legal job by representing Amnesty beneficiaries in court because they intend to sabotage the case and put fear in people. These conspirators think that they are powerful because they have security officials running around them temporarily which will expire soon, they will hear from us and they will know that we are ex-militants, because this amateur game that they are playing, is our full-time business with multiple years of experience,” the ex-militants submitted.

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