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Saying It Is Not Under EFCC Pressure, Umar’s CCT Convicts Onnoghen



Justice Walter Onnoghen was on Thursday convicted of failing to declare his assets and ordered to be removed as Chief Justice of the Federation by the Code of Conduct Tribunal, CCT, sitting in Abuja.

The Mr. Danladi Umar led three man tribunal also ordered that all the monies in the accounts which Onnoghen did not declare be forfeited to the Federal Government.

Mr. Umar also ordered that Onnoghen who ironically had voluntarily retired as the CJN be banned from holding public office for ten years.

Mr. Umar in reading the judgment dismissed the contention by Onnoghen’s defence team that he, Umar was bound to be biased on the basis of the accusations of corruption earlier preferred against him. The charges had been withdrawn by the EFCC in 2018.

In convicting Onnoghen, Umar on Thursday submitted that the failure to declare the funds was an indication that the funds were illegally acquired.

Danladi Umar: I am not under pressure from EFCC

The judgment was immediately flayed by Onnoghen’s legal team which claimed that the judgment was reached as far back as January when the charges were filed even before investigation was commenced or concluded.

The tribunal had prior to delivering judgment dismissed preliminary objection raised by Onnoghen on the jurisdiction of the tribunal affirming that the Federal Government did not violate the law by not first resorting to the National Judicial Council on the issue.

Mr. Umar also said the tribunal did not err by contradicting the position it took in the case preferred against Supreme Court jurist, Justice Sylvester Ngwuta in a similar case.

According to him Onnoghen was not charged as a serving judicial officer but as an ordinary public officer.

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