President Muhammadu Buhari led-federal government has asked for an interim order of the Federal High Court, Abuja to temporarily seize 22 properties and assets of Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu scattered all over the world. The properties are located in Dubai, Florida, London and Abuja. The properties are not included in the form that were declared before the Code of Conduct Bureau, CCB.
The Motion Ex-Parte was brought before the court pursuant to: Section 330 Of The Administration Of Criminal Justice Act, 2015; Section 8 Of The Recovery Of Public Property (Special Provisions) Act and Section 44 (2)(K) Of The 1999 Constitution Of The Federal Republic Of Nigeria (As Amended).
Festus Keyamo on behalf of the Special Presidential Investigation Panel for the Recovery of Public Property prayed the court for an interim order of temporarily forfeiture of the properties listed in Schedule B to the Federal Government of Nigeria pending the conclusion of further inquiry/investigation by the Special Presidential Investigation Panel for the Recovery of Public Property and/or possible arraignment of the Respondent and for such orders as the Court might deem fit to make in the circumstances of this case.
The grounds upon which Federal government is seeking for forfeiture of Sen. Ike Ekweremmadu, Deputy Senate President.
- That from 1999 till date, the Respondent has been a public officer and has not earned anything outside his salaries and allowances as a public officer.
- That the Respondent is the current Deputy Senate President of the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
- That the Respondent was a former Chief of Staff to the Governor of Enugu State of Nigeria, 1999 – 2002.
- That the Respondent was also a former Secretary to the Government of Enugu State of Nigeria, 2002 – 2003.
- That the Respondent was elected to represent Enugu West Senatorial District in 2003 under the People Democratic Party (PDP).
- That the Respondent has been Deputy Senate President of the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria from 2007 till date.
- That upon assumption of office in 2007, the Assets Declaration the Respondent made in 2007 does not reveal that he had acquired so much money or properties prior to that date. Attached as EXHIBIT Fis the 2007 Assets Declaration Form of the Respondent.
- That within a space of 16 years (1999 – 2015), investigation has revealed that the Respondent acquired all properties listed in Schedules A and B.
- That in his 2015 Assets Declaration Form before the Code of Conduct Bureau, the Respondent only declared the properties listed in Schedule A. Attached as EXHIBIT G is a Certified True Copy of the Assets Declaration Form of the Respondent of 2015.
- That the Respondent failed to declare the Assets listed in Schedule B.
- That investigations have also revealed that even the total value of the properties listed in Schedule A is far above his total earnings as a public officer in the said 16-year period.
- That it has become imperative for the Applicant to approach this Honourable Court for an Order temporarily attaching/forfeiting the said properties listed in Schedule B to the Federal Government of Nigeria pending the conclusion of further investigations and possible arraignment of the Respondent.
- That without the orders of this Honourable Court attaching/forfeiting the said properties, the likelihood of the frustration of investigations as well as the dissipation of the said properties is very high.
- That this matter is of utmost public interests and concern, to enable the Applicant carry out a thorough investigation into the activities of the Respondent in the acquisition of the said properties as it relates to the allegation of a breach of Code of Conduct for Public Officers.
- That this Order is necessary to enable the Panel carry out its statutory duties and functions of investigation and recovery of public properties.