The Senate has directed the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) to stop further harassment of the Senator representing Ogun East Senatorial District at the National Assembly, Prince Buruji Kashamu, over allegations of drug trafficking.
The resolution followed a 20th January, 2016 petition sent to the Senate by Senator Kashamu’s lawyer, Prince Ajibola Oluyede of TRLP LAW, complaining of attempts to abduct his client and forcibly abduct him to the United States over the same allegations which competent courts in the United Kingdom and Nigeria had adjudicated upon and exonerated him.
A reliably source at the Senate told nigerianecho.com that Oluyede had written a petition to the Senate alleging plans by the former Chairman of the NDLEA, Alhaji Ahmad Giade, who is now a Special Assistant on Narcotics to the Attorney-Generation of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami (SAN), acting in collaboration with some persons, to abduct Senator Kashamu and ship him to the United States.
Testifying before the Senator Sam Anyanwu-led Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions, Oluyede stated: “That he wrote the petition in his capacity as the solicitor to Senator Buruji Kashamu for the intervention of the Senate against the continual breach of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 by NDLEA, the office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and former Chairman of NDLEA, Ahmad Giade in collaboration with foreign agents and some politicians to abduct and transport Senator Buruji Kashamu to the United States for prosecution for alleged drug offences.
“That Senator Buruji Kashamu had no case to answer in the USA or UK since he was arraigned by these countries in several trials that exonerated him from any involvement in drug matters.
“That back home, the Nigerian courts have also exonerated him on the basis that the allegations of narcotic offences were false, and that the whole thing was a case of mistaken identity.
“That some desperate politicians had been pressuring the Attorney-General of the Federation to resuscitate the US indictment against Senator Kashamu in Nigeria to instigate an extradition process against him on this same baseless accusation.
“That to get the process kick-started, NDLEA officials on the 23rd of May, 2015 invaded Senator Kashamu’s house and laid siege for about 6 days
“That recently, it came to their knowledge through a text message from an insider in NDLEA that the agency was making arrangements to arrest/kidnap/abduct Senator Kashamu and extradite him to U.S., that the AGF had at different times advised NDLEA to stop this action as the matter was in court; and
“That the Senate should intervene and stop the incessant harassment and breach of Senator Buruji Kashamu’s fundamental human rights and threat to kidnap him in order to transport him to the U.S. for prosecution.”
Replying on behalf of the NDLEA and Mr. Giade, the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Malami said he would not be able to make any submissions on the matters raised in the petition because the cases were in various courts in Nigeria.
He, however, said he would support the Senate in the course of ensuring that the rule of law prevailed.
The committee clarified that the issue before it was not about the cases in court but the alleged plan to abduct Senator Kashamu by Giade, under the influence of some local and foreign collaborators, and ship him abroad.
In a six-page report, which was signed by nine of its 12 members, the committee said after exhaustive deliberations on the matter, it recommended as follows, “That the concerned agencies and authorities be advised to stop threatening or carrying out any activities to extradite Senator Buruji Kashamu to the United States of America for prosecution, and
“That the courts be allowed to handle the various aspects of the case before them without any interference.”
In his reaction to the Senate resolution, a former member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Segun Seriki, said, “Among others, the National Assembly is to legislate on the socio-economic well-being of Nigerians as well as the upholding of citizens right to fundamental rights. In this particular instance, a sitting senator is being unjustly threatened unabated without justifications and the Senate Ethics Committee is by right expected to investigate the matter once brought to its attention. What the committee has recommended, which the Senate rightly upheld, is that judicial due process be followed in the matter. Thus the Nigerian Senate stands against the abduction of Nigerians in senseless pretence of extradition.
“This is right of her, legitimate and fair enough except for those of our folks dreaming of Nigeria as a wishful jungle having allowed emotive self interests and political pettiness to becloud their reasoning that would find faults. Aside of affecting a sitting senator, the Nigerian Senate should have risen to this occasion as she did, which is what ordinarily, the Capitol Hill would have done in America for their citizens.”