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Anambra Govt Reacts To Gov Obiano Been Placed On Watchlist By EFCC

Willie Obiano

Following the news that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has placed the outgoing governor of  Anambra State, Willie Obiano on their watchlist, the State Government has responded to the report, calling it a witch hunt and an attempt to get back at the governor for overseeing a free and fair election in the state – one in which the ruling party’s candidate Senator Andy Uba lost.

In the press release signed by the Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment, C. Don Adinuba, the state government also accused the EFCC of acting a script written by the powers that be after their efforts to declare emergency rule in the state failed – which was followed by the dreadful loss in the November 6 governorship election.

It would be recalled that the outgoing governor of the state, Willie Obiano, who would vacate the State Government  House on March 17, 2022, upon completion of his tenure in office was placed on the nation’s anti-graft commission’s watchlist for reasons yet to be revealed.

The Commission made this known in a letter dated November 15, 2021, which was addressed to the Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS). In the letter, the EFCC asked the NIS to intimate them if Mr. Willie Obiano attempts to leave the country.

However, the state government has asked the EFCC to drop their witch hunt. In a press statement, he reiterated that Governor Obiano will be ready to answer questions about his service record when invited.

Read the statement below:

EFCC’s Inelegant Drama over Anambra Governor

1. Nigerians were dismayed that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) went a new low on Wednesday, November 24, 2021, when it sponsored media reports claiming that it has placed Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State on its watch list. The EFCC provided no details of how Governor Obiano has been placed on its watch list but made a reference to a letter it purportedly wrote on November 15, 2021, to the Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) asking it to inform the anti-graft agency anytime the Governor is traveling out of the country.

2. Everything that can be wrong with politically motivated statements like this one is obviously wrong with this statement. The EFCC knows fully well that it is acting inelegantly in this instance, and so has tried as much as possible not to make an official public statement on the alleged placing of Chief Obiano on the watch list. It furtively gave a section of the media the news report it wrote based on ostensibly its letter to the NIS on November 15.

3. Governor Obiano is out of the country currently. And he traveled through one of the country’s international airports. He did not disguise himself, but rather left the country with his identity fully disclosed at the necessary immigration point.

4. The EFCC sounded more inelegant when it claimed in the sponsored press report that it received intelligence reports that the Governor plans to “flee” from Nigeria once he hands over power next March 17 to the newly-elected Anambra State Governor, Professor Charles Chukwuma Soludo. Chief Obiano has never left any person(s) in doubt that he will relocate to his base in the United States once he finishes his tenure. As early as August 31, 2020, he announced his decision to a meeting of the Anambra State Council of Elders, comprising such personages as the erstwhile Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, Chief Emeka Anyaoku; the Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Nnaemeka Alfred Achebe who is also the chairman of both the Anambra State Council of Traditional Rulers and the Southeast Council of Traditional Rulers; a former Anambra State Governor, Dr. Chukwuemeka Ezeife; an ex-Minister of Women Affairs, Iyom Josephine Anenih, mni; the founding Director-General of the National Orientation Agency (NOA), Professor Elochukwu Amucheazi; the Archbishop-Emeritus of the Anglican Church in Anambra State, The Most Reverend Dr. Maxwell Samuel Chukwunweike Anikwenwa; and the Catholic Bishop of the Awka Diocese, Rev Dr. Paulinus Ezeokafor.

5. Governor Obiano has a whole four months to remain in office as the Anambra State Chief Executive. Nobody in Nigeria can circumscribe his constitutionally conferred immunity which shields him from both criminal and civil prosecution. The EFCC went too far as to announce in November that it is observing him. We are not aware of any State Governor who had up to four months to be in office and the EFCC went on to sponsor media reports that he was being investigated.

6. It is, indeed strange that the EFCC is making a show that it is investigating a high public officer. Anti-corruption agencies, like intelligence services, conduct their investigations discreetly, and not on pages of newspapers. Media trial has never benefitted the EFCC.

7. The whole nation knows those behind all the present histrionics about Obiano. They are those who didn’t want the November 6 election to hold. They are those in high places who unsuccessfully canvassed for emergency rule in Anambra supposedly on security grounds. They are those who masterminded the Birnin Kudu High Court charade in Jigawa State over the APGA leadership and, more importantly, the authentic APGA candidate in the November Gubernatorial Election in Anambra State. They are those responsible for the sacrilege of a Customary Court in Abuja issuing criminal summons to Professor Soludo, a former Central Bank of Nigeria Governor. These people are still fighting the gubernatorial battle on behalf of their badly defeated friends and political associates in the Anambra vote. They will fail badly, as they have done in the recent past.

8. The EFCC should not allow itself to be used by politicians who are mere birds of passage. Its ongoing Anambra drama is in bad taste. It did not serve Governor Obiano any notice. Nor did it invite him to answer questions about his service record. It just went to the press. Yet, the Governor is willing to answer any question(s) about his years in office. After all, he has received a prestigious award from the United Nations Development Programme for transparency.

God bless Anambra State.

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Search Is On For Kidnapped Actors, Monalisa Chinda Reveals

kidnapped actors

Nollywood actress Monalisa Chinda who announced the abduction of Nollywood veteran actors Clemson Cornel and Cynthia Okereke has now revealed that the search is on to rescue to kidnapped actors.

The actress who is also the Director of Communications for the Actor’s Guild of Nigeria (AGN) took to her Instagram page to express concern over the widely-held false notion that Nollywood actors are rich.

“I don’t understand how people would think that Actors have money… with the paltry sum we receive as fees? The struggle through life vicissitudes, health issues etc we face every now n then???” the actress wrote on the Instagram post she made on August 1.

Chinda also revealed that the search was on to rescue the kidnapped entertainers as the phones with which they have been contacting their family members can be traced. “$100k from where? The numbers that was used to communicate with them can easily be traced. I mean.. ???The search is on???@actorsguildofnigeria Let’s keep reposting please,” she added.

A few days ago, veteran Nollywood actress, Hilda Dokubo said that the showy nature of some celebrities which was part of what is required from the show business was the reason why many people erroneously believed that actors were rich. Dokubo equally expressed concern over the USD100,000 demanded by the abductors saying, “Where will we get one hundred thousand USdollars from? God save all of us from this pain and give us your grace for this period. I know some actors paint the wrong picture on social media all the time but it is only in line with the “Show” part of SHOWbiz. Hopefully, you’ll understand what I mean.”

The kidnapped actors Clemson Cornel and Cynthia Okereke were both returning from a movie set at Ozala of Enugu State on July 29 when they were ambushed by their abductors. Chinda in her statement released to the press said that the National President of the Guild, Ejezie Emeka Rollas had called on all actors to be more security conscious while commuting for work. Rollas “instructed all Actors to avoid going to the outskirt of cities to film except full security cover is provided to ensure their safety.”

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Organ Harvesting – UK Court Grants Bail To Ekweremadu’s Wife But Denies Ike

Beatrice Ekweremadu

Sequel to Ike Ekweremadu and his wife Beatrice’s appearance at the Old Bailey court on Friday, 22nd July for a bail hearing, Judge Richard Marks who is presiding over the case has granted bail to Beatrice Ekweremadu but remanded Ike in custody

The former deputy Senate President and current Senator representing Enugu-West was arrested alongside his wife Beatrice at Heathrow airport on June 23, on allegations of a plot to fly a man to the UK against his will and have his organs harvested for their sick daughter. The couple is charged under the Modern Slavery Act 2015.

Judge Marks, the Common Serjeant of London on Friday said he was releasing Beatrice only with her adherence to fairly stringent conditions. “The position is that I have granted bail to Beatrice subject to some fairly stringent conditions, but I have refused bail to Ike,” Mark said.

After their arrest in June last month by the London Met Police, the couple appeared in court where it was ruled that they both be remanded in custody while the appropriate authorities proceed with further investigations. The Ekweremadus were brought in after the boy whose organs they plotted to harvest opened up to medical personnel at the Royal Free Hospital (where he was being prepared for the surgery) that he was unwilling to consent. Authorities immediately moved to safely secure him before moving in on the alleged culprits.

The boy has been identified as a certain David Ukpo, a 21-year-old whose age was initially declared as 15 years old. Ukpo is said to be a homeless orphan in Lagos and was brought to the UK against in will for the purpose of harvesting his kidney for Ekweremadu’s daughter who is battling kidney failure.

Investigations have led to the arrest of Dr. Obinna Obeta A Nigerian, UK-based doctor living in Southwark in south London. Obeta has been accused of conspiring with the Ekweremadus and helping to facilitate the travel of Ukpo to the UK.

The next court hearing is scheduled for August 4, 2022.

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Nollywood Actress Ada Ameh Has Passed On

Ada Ameh

Popular Nollywood actress Ada Ameh is dead. She was 48 years old.

Her death has been confirmed by the Actors Guild of Nigeria president, Emeka Rollas. Though Rollas did not give details regarding Ameh’s cause of death, several online sources say that Ameh collapsed while attending a function in Warri, Delta State.

The said function is said to have been hosted by a renowned oil magnate and his family and Ameh was one of the attendants until she suddenly slumped. Sources say she was immediately rushed to the NNPC hospital in Warri but was confirmed dead by doctors upon arrival.

In the weeks leading up to her sad demise, Ada Ameh opened up about her struggles with mental health problems. She shared a video on her Instagram page telling fans about her ill health but retaining a positive note that she was going to fight and recover.

“Everything is going to be fine. I have an issue right now and it is taking my life. I nor go die. We will get over it, we will get over it,” the actress said in the video.

She also added that the illness not only cost her a job but put her at loggerheads with her employers. “I was given a job and I didn’t do the job because I had mental issues. Would people understand when you say you have mental issues? They won’t. They are slamming me with a bill, suing me, it’s okay,” she said.

A few weeks later, her colleague and friend Empress Njamah posted a short clip on her Instagram to update fans about Ameh’s health. Njamah asked that more prayers be made for Ameh who was seen in the video lying beside Njamah.

Ada Ameh was said to have plunged into depression after losing her only daughter to a surgery gone wrong in 2020. She had the child in her teens out of wedlock.

Ameh had a career that spanned over 20 years and was revered for her comedic and melodramatic portrayals. After her breakout in 1996 with the movie, Domitila, she next became known for playing the mother to the comedic duo Aki and Paw Paw. More recently, Ameh was best known for playing Emu, the matriarch of the Johnsons family in the acclaimed Africa Magic TV series,  The Johnsons.

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