This Day (Lagos)

4 September 2014

Nigeria: NGO Urges Govt to Seize Sheriff's Assets

Photo: SaharaReporters
Ali Modu Sheriff

A call has gone to the federal government to immediately confiscate all assets belonging to former Borno State Governor, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, in order to stop him from influencing his proposed prosecution by the International Criminal Court (ICC) over his alleged involvement in financing the outlawed Boko Haram insurgents.

Reacting to recent allegation by an Australia hostage negotiator, Dr. Stephen Davis, that the former governor and former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika, are the major backers of the terrorist group, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) in Borno State, Borno Coalition for Good Governance, in a press statement yesterday, which said the recent revelation was no surprise to the people of the state, noted that "confiscating all the assets belonging to Sheriff in Nigeria, Dubai, China, India and Chad to avoid interfering with the investigations of the ICC through financial inducement," should be the first step.

The NGO, in the statement, signed by Modu Wulgo and John Ndirbula, the Project Manager and Secretary respectively, said the federal government should be wary of being accused of being involved in Sheriff's crime against the people of the country by handing him over to the ICC for an independent investigation and possible prosecution over his alleged role in the funding of the Boko Haram movement.

The organisation said: "The revelations of the Australian hostage negotiator on Sheriff and Ihejirika did not come to us as a surprise. This is because there has been several committees set up by the federal government on Boko Haram that have indicted the duo."

They claimed that "Sheriff's eight year rule in Borno State was 'hell on earth' for the people as his father and wife ganged up to oppress the masses and also looted the treasury. It is high time he paid for his crime as he has destroyed so many people and over 15,000 people have lost their lives in the insurgency launched by Boko Haram."

As a proof of Sheriff's involvement, the organisation said: "Why did Buji Foi, the late Commissioner for Religious Affairs seek to have audience with Governor Sheriff before he was executed in 2009. The soldiers honoured the wish of Buji Foi, but on hearing the late commissioner wanted to see him, Sheriff quickly drove out of Government House, Maiduguri on that fateful day. When the soldiers brought Buji Foi in a Toyota Hilux van in handcuff 20 minutes later, Sheriff was nowhere to be found."

They said: "Why did the late Mohammed Yusuf throughout his preaching in 2009 and after his arrest continue to accuse Sheriff of betraying him. This is against the backdrop of the fact that everyone feared Sheriff like an "angel of death" for eight years, but Yusuf openly insulted him and called him "mai cin amana" meaning betrayer. We believe if there is nothing between them, Yusuf would not have the courage to do this."

They added: "Why did Sheriff quickly asked the police to execute Yusuf? This is because trying him in a court of law will have unmasked the faces behind the Boko Haram and prevents the tragic situation in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states today."

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