Stephen Ukandu, Umuahia
The apex Igbo socio-cultural organization, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has criticized the Federal High Court judgment, ordering the interim forfeiture of 40 landed property belonging to the embattled former Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu.
Ohanaeze argued that the court should have given Ekweremadu the opportunity to defend himself before giving the order which it said, was deficient and hasty.
The apex Igbo body in a press statement by its Publicity Secretary, Dr Alex Ogbonnia, said that the hasty and selective manner Ekweremadu’s case was handled was curious and suspicious.
Below is a full text of the statement made available to Ikengaonline:
“The Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide condemns the hasty judgment passed by Justice Inyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court to the effect that Sen. Prof. Ike Ekweremadu should forfeit his 40 landed properties.
“Ohanaeze Ndigbo stands on a moral probity to state that a hasty ex parte motion filed by the EFCC on a man who is undergoing some travails in the United Kingdom falls short of ethical standards and natural justice.
“We maintain that Sen. Ike Ekweremadu should be given the opportunity to defend himself on his properties; and if found wanting should surely face the consequences. “We are aware that there are several allegations of corruption cases pending in the EFCC but the urgency and selective judgment in the case of Ekweremadu is not only curious but indeed true to type.
“Ohanaeze Ndigbo calls on all the Nigerian legal luminaries of goodwill to intervene against gradual steps towards totalitarianism.”