The Arewa Youth Consultative Forum (AYCF) has condemned the detention of Senator Ali Ndume by a Federal High Court order on Monday, November 23, following his inability to produce the former Chairman of the defunct Pension Reform Task Force, Abdulrasheed Maina, who is facing money laundering charges.
Justice Okon Abang had given the order that Ndume, the Senator representing Borno South, should be remanded at the Kuje Correctional Reforms Centre after standing surety for Maina who has reportedly jumped bail by refusing to appear before the court leading to a revocation of his bail.
In a statement signed by its National President, Alhaji Yerima Shettima, AYCF wondered why the same court has “not ordered the detention of Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe who stood as surety for the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) Nnamdi Kanu, who also jumped bail and currently nowhere to be found.
“We, as a youth group from the North, find the arrest and remand in prison of Senator Ali Ndume because fugitive Abdulrasheed Maina had jumped bail, as unfair,” the statement begins.
Continuing, Shettima said:
“Whether Maina committed an offence or not, we believe it amounts to setting a bad example if Senator Abaribe, who stood surety for terrorist Nnamdi Kanu is still walking the streets as a free man.
“We cannot fathom why Senator Abaribe who secured bail for IPOB’s Kanu whose action has since been declared treasonable and a terror to the country and is still on the run, has never been sanctioned for standing surety.
“In the interest of equity, fairness and balance, Senator Abaribe should be immediately arrested and remanded in prison too until Kanu is turned in or he turns himself in.
“Both Ndume and Abaribe are senators in the country, so Abaribe cannot be said to be higher than Ndume.
“Both are lawmakers by the grace of our constitution and the votes of their constituents.
“Most importantly, we have a duty as a country to demonstrate that no one citizen is above the other.
“Significantly, Ndume’s case is such that Maina is still a suspect being tried by the law and no sentence has been passed yet on him by any court of competent jurisdiction.
“Still this can’t be said of Nnamdi Kanu and his treason case.
“We are therefore, very disturbed that this is happening to Ndume at a moment democratic power is mainly in the hands of people from Ndume’s immediate constituency.
“It is the kind of development that gives people room to accuse the Federal Government of selective application of justice.
“We, therefore, call on President Buhari to intervene and put an end to this embarrassing selectivity against one of the North’s exceptionally vocal, fearless and pro-masses member of the National Assembly.”
Abaribe had filed a suit to discharge himself as a surety to Nnamdi Kanu. The court is yet to rule on his application.
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