Tinubu Can Be President Now, His Drug Business Was Over 10 Years Ago – Bayo Onanuga
Onanuga, the chief spokesman for President-elect Bola Tinubu, said on Saturday that his principal’s cocaine racket in the United States occurred more than ten years ago and hence cannot be used to undermine his victory at the polls last month.
“The Obidiots aren’t readers. They live in a cocoon of lies and manufactured propaganda,” Mr Onanuga said in response to a tweet from Ayo Obe, another of Mr Tinubu’s surrogates, who claimed that the new Nigerian leader could not be removed by the Supreme Court because his established drug trafficking case in Chicago was already statute-barred.
Mrs Obe referenced Section 137 (1)e) of the Constitution, which states that a Nigerian cannot be elected president within ten years of being convicted of offences brought by the Code of Conduct Bureau.
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“A person shall not be qualified for election to the office of President if within a period of less than ten years before the date of the election to the office of President he has been convicted and sentenced for an offence involving dishonesty or he has been found guilty of the contravention of the Code of Conduct,” the section said.
Mrs Obe, on the other hand, ignored the preceding part of the Constitution, Section 137 (1)(d), which barred anyone who had previously been penalized for any offense from becoming president. The clause, which applies to Mr Tinubu’s forfeiture of nearly $460,000 for narcotics offences in Chicago in 1993, did not specify a timetable for a convict’s release to compete for Nigeria’s presidency.
It only said: “A person shall not be qualified for election to the office of President if he is under a sentence of death imposed by any competent court of law or tribunal in Nigeria or a sentence of imprisonment or fine for any offence involving dishonesty or fraud (by whatever name called) or for any other offence, imposed on him by any court or tribunal or substituted by a competent authority for any other sentence imposed on him by such a court or tribunal.”
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In 2014, the Supreme Court defined forfeiture as punishment for an offence under Nigerian criminal statutes.
“The word “forfeiture” means – “the divestiture of property without compensation. The loss of a right, privilege, or property because of a crime, breach of obligation, or neglect of duty,” the court ruled on January 17, 2014, in Mohammed Abacha and the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“A person who has forfeited property on the basis of a crime cannot be entitled to indemnity. Forfeiture is a form of punishment. There is no indemnity in our criminal procedure,” the court further stated in a majority decision delivered by now-Chief Justice Olukayode Ariwoola.
The drug case against Mr Tinubu is one of the primary grounds for his disqualification in the election suit filed by Labour Party presidential candidate Peter Obi against Mr Tinubu’s declaration as president-elect in the February 25 presidential election.
Nigerians Blast Tinubu’s Aide, Bayo Onanuga For Issuing ‘Last Warning’ To Igbos
Mr. Onanuga’s attack on Mr. Obi’s followers comes as Nigerian security services caution residents to avoid online confrontation.
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