Dapo Olorunyomi, 3 Others Win 2020 International Press Freedom Awards

The Committee to Protect Journalists will honor four courageous journalists from Bangladesh, Iran, Nigeria, and Russia with the 2020 International Press Freedom Awards. They are Dapo Olorunyomi, the CEO, and publisher of Premium Times; Shahidul Alam (Bangladesh), founder of Pathshala Media Institute and the Drik photo library; Mohammad Mosaed (Iran): Mosaed is a freelance economic reporter; and Svetlana Prokopyeva (Russia), a regional correspondent for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.All four have been arrested or faced criminal prosecution in reprisal for their reporting. CPJ will also honor lawyer Amal Clooney with the Gwen Ifill Press Freedom Award.

This is contained in a statement issued by CPJ.

“Like brave and committed journalists everywhere, CPJ’s honorees set out to report the news without fear or favor for the benefit of their communities, their country, and the world,” said Joel Simon, CPJ executive director. “They understood that they would confront powerful forces, enemies of the truth, who would try to stop them from doing their work. What they did not foresee was COVID-19. The global pandemic has not only made their jobs more difficult and dangerous, it has fueled a ferocious press freedom crackdown as autocratic leaders around the world suppress unwelcome news under the guise of protecting public health.”

CPJ’s 2020 awardees are:

Dapo Olorunyomi (Nigeria): Olorunyomi is the CEO, and publisher of the Nigerian newspaper Premium Times, and during his decades-long career as a journalist has been a fierce defender of press freedom in Nigeria despite repeated government harassment. He was arrested twice before having to go into hiding in 1995, and more recently he was arrested alongside a colleague in 2017 when police raided the Premium Times’ office on allegations of defamation.

Shahidul Alam (Bangladesh): Alam is a renowned photojournalist and commenter, and the founder of the Bangladeshi multimedia training organization the Pathshala Media Institute and the Drik photo library. In August 2018, Alam was detained after posting a video to social media about student protests in Dhaka. He spent 102 days behind bars, and said he was beaten in custody, before being freed in November 2018.

Mohammad Mosaed (Iran): Mosaed is a freelance economic reporter who investigates corruption, embezzlement, labor issues, economic sanctions, and popular protests. Forced to resign from a reformist newspaper under government pressure, he publishes news on social media platforms. Mosaed was arrested in late 2019 in relation to a tweet, and released in early 2020. He was briefly arrested again in February after criticizing the government’s handling of COVID-19.

Dapo Olorunyomi (Nigeria): Olorunyomi is the co-founder, CEO, and publisher of the Nigerian newspaper Premium Times, and during his decades-long career as a journalist has been a fierce defender of press freedom in Nigeria despite repeated government harassment. He was arrested twice before having to go into hiding in 1995, and more recently he was arrested alongside a colleague in 2017 when police raided the Premium Times’ office on allegations of defamation.

Svetlana Prokopyeva (Russia): Prokopyeva is a regional correspondent for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, known as Radio Svoboda. In early 2019, authorities raided her home, seized her equipment and personal belongings, and interrogated her. She was charged with “justifying terrorism” and her bank accounts were frozen in relation to comments she made on liberal radio station Ekho Moskvy in 2018, when she discussed a suicide bombing attack. This month she was convicted and ordered to pay a fine of 500,000 rubles (US$6,980). The prosecutor had sought a six-year prison term.

The Gwen Ifill Press Freedom Award is given annually by CPJ’s board of directors to recognize extraordinary and sustained commitment to press freedom. This year’s awardee, lawyer Amal Clooney, has represented embattled reporters around the world, including Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo of Reuters, who were imprisoned in Myanmar for 17 months. She promotes freedom of speech and journalism through the Clooney Foundation for Justice’s TrialWatch initiative, which monitors the trials of journalists worldwide and provides free legal representation for those in need.

“Journalists in trouble have no better champion than Amal Clooney, which is why we are so delighted to honor her with the Gwen Ifill Press Freedom Award. A talented barrister, gifted negotiator, and powerful speaker, Clooney works tirelessly to free journalists unjustly targeted by despotic leaders using increasingly punitive laws to stifle reporting,” said Kathleen Carroll, CPJ board chair.

The winners will be honored on November 19, 2020, at CPJ’s annual benefit gala, to be chaired this year by Patrick Gaspard, President of Open Society Foundations, and hosted by veteran broadcast journalist Lester Holt.

Due to health and safety restrictions related to COVID-19, this year’s gala will be virtual, with video profiles, compelling press freedom stories, award presentations, and acceptance speeches streamed online and shared around the world.

LIRS To Implement Additional Tax Incentives and Reliefs To Taxpayers In Lagos

In furtherance of the commitment to mitigate the negative effect of COVID-19 pandemic on individuals and businesses, Lagos State Internal Revenue Service (LIRS) has commenced the implementation of additional reliefs and measures to further ease the impact of the pandemic on taxpayers in Lagos State starting from Thursday, July 16, 2020.

These additional measures and incentives are sequel to the agency’s initial 3-month extension of the deadline for filing of annual returns (from March 31 to June 30, 2020).

According to the Executive Chairman, LIRS, Mr. Ayodele Subair, “the following measures are to be implemented to further ease the impact of the pandemic on our esteemed taxpayers in Lagos state: LIRS shall allow on a case by case basis, payment of outstanding liabilities in instalments to ease cash flow challenges that may affect taxpayers. Taxpayers are to enjoy a waiver of penalty for late payment of liabilities under PAYE (Pay As You Earn) that was due during the period of March-May, 2020 when the State was under COVID-19 lockdown.

In addition, a waiver of penalties due on late filing of 2020 annual tax returns known as ‘Form A’ will be granted. A remarkable waiver of interest and penalty on liabilities arising from 2009 to 2015 tax audit for taxpayers who can pay up on or before December 31, 2020 will be implemented.

In appreciation of taxpayers that have supported the State Government in the fight against the pandemic, the LIRS through the Lagos State Government will be granting tax credit of 20% of all cash and kind donations made towards Covid-19 by individuals resident in the State for the 2021 Year of Assessment (subject to a cap of 35% of tax due).”

He further announced that additional payment channels have been opened up to make payment of taxes easier, simpler and more convenient for all. The Executive Chairman pronounced that Video Conferencing has been adopted as the default mode for conducting Tax Audit Reconciliation Committee [TARC] meetings in consonance with social distancing advisories from Government and other relevant health authorities.

He encouraged taxpayers to make use of the Agency’s digital communication platforms to get updates on its operations and details of all tax payment platforms.

He enjoined all businesses and individuals resident in Lagos State to take advantage of these additional palliatives and reciprocate the kind gestures of Lagos State Government by discharging their civic responsibilities through prompt payment of all taxes and levies due to the State.

The LIRS urges the Lagos State residents to stay safe and obey all Covid-19 guidelines as stipulated by the relevant health authorities and Lagos State Government.

For further enquiries, taxpayers are encouraged to visit the LIRS website, www.lirs.gov.ng, and its various social media platforms @lirsgovng or by calling the Customer Care Centre on 0700 CALL LIRS (0700-2255-5477)

Osinbajo Celebrates Wife, Dolapo As She Clocks 53

The Vice-President of Nigeria, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, is definitely in a great mood as his wife, Dolapo, clocks 53 today.

Osinbajo, on Wednesday morning, took to social media to compose a lovely note to celebrate his wife.

He described Dolapo as his darling, and also praised her.

Sharing pictures of the family, Osinbajo wrote,

“Happy Birthday to our best friend…

“And my darling… brave, beautiful and kind.

“I love you.

“Yemi.”

Dolapo Osinbajo is a Nigerian lawyer and political figure. She was called to the Nigerian Bar in 1990.

She married Yemi Osinbajo, a distant cousin, on 25 November 1989.

Buhari Suspends EFCC Secretary Olukoyede, 10 Others

President Muhammadu Buhari has suspended no fewer than 11 senior officials of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, as the probe of the shenanigans under the stewardship of disgraced Ibrahim Magu deepened. 

Authoritative Presidency sources told P.M.News on Tuesday night that EFCC executive Secretary Olanipekun Olukoyede was among the senior officials suspended.

According to the source, ‘they were suspended for various alleged criminal and corrupt infractions”. 

The suspension of the officials was also to allow for unfettered investigation of the commission.

“All the top officials in the agency have been suspended, their offices locked, to prevent any tampering with files at the commission”, the source added.

President Buhari suspended Ibrahim Magu, the former acting chairman of the agency last week and appointed the director of operations, Mohammed Umar Abba, to hold forte.

The source said Umar Abba survived the temporary purge, as he was found not to be a part of the suspected underhand dealings in the agency.

Olukoyede became the Secretary to the EFCC in November 2018 following confirmation by the Senate.

The Ikere-Ekiti born senior lawyer was a former chief of staff to Magu. He replaced Emmanuel Aremo, whose five-year tenure expired in July 2018.

The former acting chairman of the agency is facing for the second week, grilling by the presidential panel headed by Justice Ayo Salami, over financial allegations and improprieties, including money laundering.

He is facing tough questioning over allegations that he re-looted funds recovered by the commission. And that he accepted bribes to pervert cases of graft.

He is also accused of mismanagement of recovered assets by the EFCC.

Among the issues Magu is helping the panel to resolve are wide discrepancies in figures of recovered monies published by the agency.

The panel has also asked him to react to the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit(NFIU) report accusing him of siphoning money from the EFCC. 

NFIU report showed that a particular Bureau de Change, owned by Ahmed Ibrahim Shanono linked to the Acting Chairman based in Kaduna has more than 158 accounts and has been receiving huge sums of funds.

The report also accused Magu of laundering money through Pastor Emmanuel Omale of Hand of God Prophetic Ministry. 

Omale was alleged to have bought a landed property on behalf of Magu worth N573 million in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

“Another individual who is helping in laundering funds for the Acting Chairman and who has been referred to in several petitions is one Pastor Emmanuel Omale (Hand of God Prophetic Ministry).

Erelu Dosunmu Appeals For Peace In Iru Land

The Erelu Kuti of Lagos, Dr. Abiola Dosumu has called on all warring parties in Iru land to sheath their swords and allow peace to reign in the kingdom.

The Erelu, who made the appeal today in a statement, explained that she had followed with utter dismay and pain the occurrences that have arisen in Iru-land in recent times, stressing that she would be guilty of disservice to the Kingdoms of Lagos if she did not lend her voice with those calling for peace.

“As the Erelu Kuti of Lagos-the Queen mother, mother of Royalties of the Kingdoms of Lagos who has been enthroned since 1974, over forty years ago, I am honoured and legitimately bound to sue for peace.

“I have learnt from our grandfathers with whom I was privileged to sit, rule and acquire great knowledge with wisdom. The Almighty in His great mercy has preserved my life till today to continue to interact with the current generations of Obas who exhibit even more progressive agenda. And if I do not lend my voice with those calling for peace, I shall be guilty of disservice to the Kingdoms of Lagos,” she averred.

She pointed out that ascension to thrones in Lagos has since ceased to be transition from father to son except for some extreme exceptions, adding that it has always been by rotation of various family branches.

Dosunmu explained that the struggle to attain the throne has become the survival of the fittest among the princes within the legitimate ruling house and not even by age or any set order hence she called on every ruling house that have vied for the throne to rally round and support the new Oniru of Iru Kingdom.

“I have seen many transitions from one Oba to the other, it usually starts with struggles and acrimony but once a successor is crowned we usually ‘Je Ebure’ and rally round the new monarch and continue to live in harmony. We are all from one big Iroko tree.

“I therefore use this medium to appeal to all the warring parties to sheath their swords and allow peace to reign. Iru-land is a highbrow part of Greater Lagos which has enjoyed relative peace and cordial co-existence. This acumen is the legacy bequeathed to us by our illustrious ancestors which we must guard jealously because therein lies our strength which has made our kingdoms prosperous, sustainable and the envy of others,” the Erelu said.

She thanked God for the peaceful enthronement of the new king of Iru-land, Oba AbdulWaisu Omogbolahan Lawal, Abisogun II and urged all princes, princesses and residents of Iru Kingdom to support the new king whom she noted is a seasoned administrator and a well cultured gentleman that will take the Kingdom to greater heights in the areas of development, education and prosperity for all.

“I will like to appeal to the management body of the affairs of Iru-land under our revered immediate past ruler to collaborate with our new king so as to effect peaceful transition. We, the members of the royal kingdoms of Lagos are experts in peaceful co-existence and acceptance of all and sundry.

“We must continue to lead by this example and therefore all grievances should be settled on a roundtable in-council under the new ruler Kabiyesi Oba AbdulWaisu Omogbolahan Lawal Abisogun II the Oniru of Iru,” she added.

Gokada CEO Fahim Saleh Brutally Murdered In $2.2 Million Apartment

Fahim Saleh, the CEO of Gokada, was found dead, headless and dismembered in his New York apartment on Tuesday.

According to Police, his body was cut up and sorted into different plastic bags. An electric saw which was still plugged in was also found in the apartment.

The incident happened in his luxury Lower East Side apartment which he bought for $2.2 million in 2019.

According to Daily News, police moved to his apartment after his sister called the emergency line. 

She was reported to have visited the apartment after not hearing from Saleh in a day and became worried. 

However, Police made the grisly discovery in a building on E. Houston St. at Suffolk St. on the Lower Eastside about 3:30 p.m.

Cops found contractor bags near the torso, sources said, but didn’t immediately open them to see if the body parts were inside.

Meanwhile, Fahim, was last seen on surveillance footage on Monday afternoon around 1:40 pm, when he entered his building’s elevator, which opens right out to his seventh-floor apartment.

According to several reports, police believe they have surveillance footage of the suspect entering the building and then using the elevator.

The footage is said to show the suspect in a glove and a mask covering his face sharing the elevator with Saleh up to the seventh floor.

As the door of the elevator opened directly into Saleh’s apartment, he was seen to fall to the floor immediately as he walked into his home from a possible gunshot.

Police, reports say, believe the murder was carried out by a professional because of how the attack happened.

“We have a torso, a head that’s been removed, arms, and legs. Everything is still on the scene. We don’t have a motive,” New York Police Department spokesman Sgt. Carlos Nieves said.

Saleh has described his history as an entrepreneur in a series of posts on Medium.com. 

He got his start creating a prank calling website, then moved on to create a motorcycle taxi company in his parents’ native Bangladesh.

He is well known in Lagos, Nigeria where he helped launch Gokada, the former bike hailing company that has pivoted into delivery services following the government’s ban on passenger motorcycles.

Nigeria’s First Female Combat Helicopter Pilot, Tolulope Arotile, Dies At 23

Flying Officer Tolulope Arotile, the first-ever female combat helicopter pilot in Nigeria, is dead. She was barely 23 years of age.

Arotile died as a result of head injuries sustained from a road traffic accident at Nigerian Air Force (NAF) Base Kaduna.

Her death came barely a year after she was winged as a combat helicopter pilot in the Air Force following the completion of her course in South Africa.

Confirming the accident, NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, said until her death, ‪Flying Officer Arotile, who was commissioned into the NAF in September 2017 as a member of Nigerian Defence Academy Regular Course 64, was the first ever female combat helicopter pilot in the service.‬

He said: “During her short but impactful stay in the service, late Arotile, who hails from Iffe in Ijumu Local Government Area of Kogi State, contributed significantly to the efforts to rid the North Central States of armed bandits and other criminal elements by flying several combat missions under Operation GAMA AIKI in Minna, Niger State.

“The Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, on behalf officers, airmen, airwomen and civilian staff of the NAF, commiserates with the family of late ‪Flying Officer Arotile‬ over this irreparable loss. We pray that the Almighty God grant her soul eternal rest.”

Akpabio: Nigeria Must Recalibrate Leadership Recruitment Process

By Olabode Opeseitan
I’m just wondering how Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill #Akpabio’s wife, children, extended family, circle of friends, praise singers and political associates, particularly those in his adopted political family, the All Progressives Congress, would feel reading the dumbfounding allegations levelled against him by the former Managing Director, Interim Management Committee of Niger Delta Development Commission (#NDDC), Ms Joi Nunieh.

She claimed as follows in widely circulated reports:
•He sexually harassed me.
•I gave him a dirty slap.
•Immediately I assumed office, Akpabio told me to give him $1 million and I said ‘where will I get that from’?
•He stinks of corruption. He got 30 contracts just for himself”.

For good measure, Nunieh’s allegations are yet to be proved but if we recalled that the same man was indicted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (#EFCC) over alleged N105BN infractions traced to him during his tenure as two-term Governor of Akwa Ibom State, then, there is the need for the society to be discomforted about our flawed leadership recruitment process. Fiddling with the public till has become a ludicrous trend in Nigeria by political gladiators.

One of the reasons why the worst of us keep representing the best of us is the failure to subject every candidate for public office to detailed and objective scrutiny. In an unfortunate mischaracterisation of our essence as a society, only the filthiest thrive.

In a July 2019 report, the Punch reported that EFCC kept mum over the N108BN fraud allegations against the former governor. When Akpabio was considered for Ministerial appointment, were President Buhari and his team not aware of the weighty allegations against Akpabio. Yet, integrity was sacrificed on the altar of political expediency and the “colourful” man from Akwa Ibom was picked ahead of others, who probably ranked higher in integrity.

We cannot continually romanticise corruption and expect probity. Just like the President acted and axed Ibrahim Magu, this is the time to ask Akpabio to step aside. Additionally, Buhari should, like the late sage, Chief Obafemi #Awolowo and the leader of talakawas, #AminuKano, distance himself completely from leaders who have soiled their hands and souls with filthy lucre.

Godswill Akpabio remains innocent until proven guilty in a court of competent jurisdiction. However, there are too many disturbing allegations of financial impropriety around him. Even if all the fragrances in the world’s perfumeries are emptied to deodorise this putridity, it may not smell like a rose.

Ibidunni Ighodalo: I Am Still In Denial


  • Kemi Ajumobi 

After a restless night

Eyes struggle to shut

Caught a few sleep

Opened it and expected to hear

The news that will change our mood

That it was a joke you pulled on us

Alas, the joke is on me

You are gone and there is no you

I know my mum will love you instantly

Have you seen her? Yes…over there

No, not with Daddy, Daddy must be with Dr Myles Munroe, digesting Rhema

Look again, she is somewhere there

She isn’t? Oh check again, 

She must be with Pastor Bimbo

Pastor Bims is still reporting me to her

Telling how I made her come to my church

Didn’t let her rest till she did

Just check well, they will be together

Discussing my matter

Don’t join them o, make sure you defend me

You know I saw my mum the other day

She sent me back and said to come back later

I am honestly hoping she sends you back

Because truth is…regarding your departure

I AM STILL IN DENIAL…

Magu’s Troubles: The State of Play, By Olatunji Dare

“We have been there before,” not a few Nigerians would have said with more than a touch of cynicism, having regard to the dismissal of Ibrahim Magu, most recently chair of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Weren’t his predecessors in that office – Nuhu Ribadu, Ibrahim Lamorde and Farida Waziri – hounded out in roughly the same circumstances by panicked political officials concerned that the threesome were pursuing their remit with an excess of zeal and fearful that the layers of protection they had woven over the decades to cover up their corrupt dealings might be yanked off?

So, they struck first.

From their strategic positions in the legislature and the higher bureaucracy, they waged wars of attrition to frustrate, distract and undermine the EFCC. With help from compromised media outlets, they planted in the public consciousness and embellished at every iteration and reiteration information designed to discredit its chief executive and its key operatives. It is as if they were following the old boxing maxim that if you kill the head, the body will die.

None of the officials left the agency on his or her own terms. None received even a grudging commendation for achievements ranging from the modest to the substantial on a mission ranked among the most dangerous of national assignments. Each departed damaged by a trainload of scurrilous allegations – the more scurrilous, the better; let them prove the charges false, or shut up and put up.

Magu’s on-going predicament is at bottom a variation on an old theme. Even so, the differences between how his predecessors were sent packing and the bureaucratic cum pseudo-judicial torture to which he has been subjected, especially this past fortnight, are startling.

I exaggerate, but not by much, when I compare the manner of his arrest to a kidnapping. He was on an errand when security officials, armed for lethal combat, besieged his convoy, re-routed it to the Presidential Villa and hauled him before a Presidential Investigation Panel (PIP) which immediately slapped on him a battery of charges ranging from criminal breach of trust to incompetence and “insubordination.”

His trial had begun in earnest, before a panel assembled in secrecy by the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), reportedly with the backing of President Muhammadu Buhari. Since his arrest, he has been held in detention by the police.

It is notorious that Buhari had been under tremendous pressure from key figures in the National Assembly, business barons who operate on the principle that nothing succeeds like wheeling and dealing in public contracts, and by some so-called politically exposed persons who command vast wealth of dubious provenance.

Buhari appeared to be resisting these loud, well-orchestrated demands. When Magu’s term ended, he did not name another official to replace him. But he did not nominate Magu for fresh term nor extend his tenure, perhaps fearing certain defeat in the National Assembly. And so, by design or default, Magu remained in office, lulled into a false sense of security – until they came for him.

The trial, beg your pardon, investigation, is being conducted in an atmosphere of intense prejudicial publicity. Hardly a day passes without some new elements added to the Magu’s alleged misdeeds in office. A visitor to Nigeria might indeed be led to believe that Magu has been the trouble with Nigeria since he took office if not much earlier, a personification of the corruption that is synonymous with Nigeria’s international profile; an official who, given a remit to check official corruption, turned it into a licence to transfer public assets to himself and his cronies on a scale almost beyond belief.

There is something almost Kafkaesque about some aspects of the proceedings. Effectively in captivity, Magu has had no access to material witnesses and documents that would enable him respond to the charges he is facing. Even Magu’s attorney, Wahab Shittu, has complained that he has had no access to the panel’s terms of reference, without which he cannot represent his client robustly.

As I have noted, the battery of charges is truly formidable. It is not a rushed job, and certainly could not have been prepared overnight. The attentive public has a right to assume that the allegations would have been painstakingly investigated before they were parlayed into substantive charges. And from there, the logical recourse would be to a court of law.

Instead, we have a panel whose brief, it must be supposed, is to investigate the allegations and determine their validity. And then, what? Recommend a substantive trial if it is satisfied that the established facts warrant prosecution, or in the absence of such a determination, dismiss the charges.

In the United States, it belongs in the province of a grand jury that makes this kind of determination. Our body of laws makes no provision for such an institution. But I have it on the authority of the Attorney-General that the special investigation panel is fully backed by our laws. That may well be the case.

But is the whole thing, not just another judicial fudge, one of the many that have dogged the tenure of one of most inventive and intensely political attorneys-general (shades of ROA Akinjide, without the forensic brilliance) of the federation ever. Making sweeping, categorical charges first and investigating later does not accord with the spirit of our laws.

Nor do our laws permit any official to be a judge in his or own cause, as the Attorney-General appears to be doing. Of the six members of the investigating panel, two are from his office and report directly to him. At least one other, is a department over which he has jurisdiction.

One cannot assert categorically that the panel is rigged, despite Malami’s scarcely-veiled resolve to see the back of the former EFCC chief. But the whole thing raises questions of fairness, and of due protection under the law.

Nor does the appearance of a conflict of interest end there. One of the charges levelled at Magu is “insubordination” to the Attorney-General. That makes the whole thing appear personal – and petty, too, it is necessary to insist. Even in the elastic mandate Malami claims, at what point did Magu’s “insubordination” to a superior in a bureaucracy governed by the General Orders and administrative rules morph into a penal crime?

As the Bard might have said, the man doth complain too much. And he doth overreach, too.

To lend a veneer of respectability and legality to the proceedings, they trotted one of Nigeria’s most respected jurists, the Hon Justice Isa Salami, out of retirement, and named him chair of the investigative panel – the same jurist that a posse of powerful political figures who share Malami’s world view had tried to destroy in a sustained campaign of calumny, besides which Magu’s current ordeal almost seems like a compliment.

It is with great pride that I number myself among a handful of influential media figures and well-regarded legal scholars who defended Justice Salami’s honour and integrity at every point, culminating in his rehabilitation and in his being restored to his rightful place in our judicial history.

Something tells me that Justice Salami will have satisfied himself that the panel has proper legal standing, and had agreed to serve from a sense of duty. But there are duties and there are duties, and I must say, with all due respect, that he should have in this matter exercised a finer sense of discrimination. He should have advised that Magu be brought to trial before the regular courts based on the indictment, without the mediation of an investigative panel.

We must hope that this troubling expedient does not go on to constitute a precedent. The panel is not exactly a kangaroo court but in concept if not in practice, it bears striking resemblances to one. Magu should be granted bail and, together with his attorneys, granted access to all the human and documentary material he needs to respond to the grave charges he faces.

Nigerians, even those suspected of high crimes, deserve better. So does our fledgling democracy.

The Nation
July 14, 2020