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General News of Tuesday, 28 September 2021


IGP forwards HEDA report over alleged forgery to Malami for prosecution

Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami

Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Alkali Usman, has forwarded the duplicate case file on the investigation of Chairman of Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA), Olanrewaju Suraju, over alleged forgery to Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, for necessary action.

Former Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mohammed Bello Adoke, had lodged a complaint on the circulation of a forged email and stage-managed phone conversation, which he said were intended to implicate him in the OPL 245 trial in Italy.
The police revealed that it traced the circulation of the materials to Suraju.

According to a letter seen by The Guardian, dated September 20, 2021, and addressed to the AGF, the Head of IGP Monitoring Team, Ibrahim Musa, said he was directed to forward the duplicate file for vetting, advice and possible prosecution, insisting there was a prima facie case against Suraju.

The letter also revealed that from court documents accessed, the forged email emanated from one Mr. Ismail Aliyu, who described himself as a representative of the Federal Ministry of Finance and was addressed to Bayo Osolake, an employee of the defendant (Abubakar), giving instruction for the transfer of funds.
He said: “This is completely contradictory to what Suraju Olarenwaju has been claiming in some of his press statements, that the content of the purported email stated, ‘Dear Sir, Kindly find the attached document for your information and action, if necessary. -Mohammed Bello Adoke.’

“That so-called attachment in the purported email has not been provided by the suspect (Suraju), who claimed the copy of the purported email was sent to him by his partners in the United Kingdom and Italy, thereby making the email vague.”

According to the letter: “From the investigation conducted by the IGP Monitoring Team, it was evident Mr. Suraju, without verifying the authenticity of the purported telephone interview and email, proceeded to use the social media handles @HedaAgenda on Twitter and @HedaResourceCentre on Facebook to disseminate same, and when invited by the police to substantiate his claims, he feigned sickness, jumped bail and resorted to issuing press statements maligning the police, writing frivolous counter petitions and filing civil suits in court against the IGP Monitoring Unit, complainant (Adoke) and the Police, aimed at undermining the investigation, derailing investigation and evading justice.
“The totality of the conduct of Olarenwaju Suraju is a calculated attempt to subject the complainant to media trial and falsify relationship between the complainant and Aliyu Abubakar, while their cases are still ongoing in court, thereby misleading the public.

“Hence a prima facie case of cyber-stalking, giving false information to mislead a public officer, injurious falsehood and criminal defamation with intent to incite can be sustained against Mr. Olarenwaju Suraju.

“In consideration of the fact that the case involves a former public officer of the Federal Government of Nigeria, who is also being prosecuted by the Office of the Attorney General of Federation, and in compliance with the IGP directive vide a letter dated September 17, 2021, the duplicate case file is, hereby, forwarded to the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, for further necessary action.”

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