Jonathan's Cousin Petitions Reps Over Unlawful Arrest, Detention By EFCC


A cousin to former President Goodluck Jonathan, Barr. Azibaola Robert has

petitioned the House of Representatives, protesting what he dubbed

illegal detention by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Robert, Managing Director of Kakatar Construction and Engineering Company

Limited, who has been in EFCC custody since March 23, 2016, urged the

lawmakers to intervene in what he described as EFCC’s breach of his

fundamental human rights.
In the complaint document signed by Dr. Faith Robert, presented to the House

Thursday by Hon. Kingsley Chinda (PDP, Rivers) the petitioner urged the

House to ensure that his rights were restored.
The petition reads in part: “Mr. Azibaola Robert is the Managing Director of

'Kakatar Engineering and Construction Company Limited', and its sister

company, 'One Plus Holdings Limited'. He is a cousin to former President

Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, and a law abiding and peace loving Nigerian”.

“Recently, operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)

arrested the said Mr. Azibaola Robert over allegations of a $40 million

contract which the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) awarded

to 'One Plus Holdings Limited' for the surveillance and security of oil

pipelines across the Niger Delta. The ONSA is at present indebted to the

company (One Plus Holdings Limited) to about $4 million, being final

payment for the said surveillance/oil pipeline security contract.

“Mr. Azibaola Robert was arrested and taken into EFCC custody on 23rd

March, 2016 and has since spent over a month in EFCC detention, without

any formal charge brought against him. Preceding his arrest, however was a

raid on his house by scores of heavily armed mobile Policemen who in the

process subjected his wife and young Children to the most dehumanizing and

traumatic ordeal.
“In EFCC custody, Mr. Azibaola Robert has been denied access to his

family, lawyers and medicare and repeatedly bullied, harassed, threatened

and psychologically traumatised by EFCC operatives, and no formal charge

brought against him.
“Curiously, his interrogators have told him in very clear terms to say

something to finger and/or implicate former President Goodluck Jonathan,

his cousin, as a 'front' or beneficiary of the surveillance/security

contract; else he would face the “Dasuki treatment” and rot away in EFCC

“We note the clear provisions of Chapter IV of the 1999 Constitution of

the Federal Republic of Nigeria, dealing with Fundamental Rights,

particularly the right to dignity of the human person (S.34); right to

personal liberty (S.35); and the right to fair hearing (S. 36)”, the

petitioner opined.
Going further, she said: “Equally instructive is the fact that upon an

application for the enforcement of his Fundamental Human Rights, a High

Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) on 7th April, 2016 granted

Mr. Azibaola Robert bail and after meeting the bail conditions, a

production warrant of the same court was served on the EFCC on 12th April.

Yet, the EFCC has refused to release him on bail or charge him to court,

but continued to treat the order of a court of competent jurisdiction with

contempt. We cannot therefore comprehend why the EFCC would deliberately

violate the above constitutional provisions and order of court”.

The petition alleged that the arrest and detention of Mr. Robert was part

of a larger plot by the anti graft body to get the former President by al

means necessary.
“Also and seemingly to underscore the “get Jonathan at all cost or

languish in detention theory” is the fact that whilst some other persons

who were arrested and detained with Mr. Azibaola have been released, Mr.

Azibaola has been refused his freedom only because of his close blood ties

with Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, the petitioner added.

The petitioner opined that “we are deeply concerned about the health of

Mr. Azibaola Robert whose demeanour, countenance, co-ordination and

cognition are reported to have significantly changed; and such conditions

according to his personal physician could be indicative of a systematic

poisoning with psychotropic/psychoactive and other lethal drugs by EFCC

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