Wike and Former Gov.Akpabio may be in serious Trouble due to supreme Court Judge Okori’s Alleged Confession
2015 A’Ibom Guber polls: Fear grips Akpabio over arrest of Supreme Court Justices
…Spare me, I’ll refund Akpabio’s bribe money- Justice Okoro begs Buhari
… Akwa Ibom Elders snub Justice Okoro as Supreme Court Judge beg APC chieftains for intervention
Former Akwa Ibom State Governor and Senate Minority Leader, Godswill Akpabio was gripped with fear upon hearing the news of the arrest of two Supreme Court judges and some High Court judges over allegations of corruption and financial inducement to compromise the 2015 Akwa Ibom State Governorship Election Petition.
One of the Justices arrested in the early hours of Saturday morning by a team of Special Forces from the Department of State Services (DSS), Abuja, is Hon Justice Inyang Okoro who hails from Akwa Ibom State. Akpabio was instrumental to Okoro’s elevation to the Court of Appeal as a judge and later to the Supreme Court. He hails from Ikono LGA of Akwa Ibom State.
A frightened Akpabio is alleged to have been battling in vain to reach out to the detained Supreme Court judge at the DSS headquarters Saturday morning in an attempt to extract a commitment that he (Akpabio) will not be implicated during interrogation in custody by the detained Judge in relation to allegation of bribery and corruption which led to the compromising of the 2015 Akwa Ibom State Governorship Petition.
DSS investigation reveals that Akpabio had used Justice Okoro as a “courier” to pass on the money that was used to induce the Justices of the Supreme Court to give judgement in favour of the PDP.
According to a source privy to the arrest who spoke to our reporter in confidence, “Akwa Ibom State Governor, Udom Emmanuel and his Rivers State counterpart, Nyeson Wike had contributed money and given to Senator Akpabio to bribe the justices of the Supreme Court through Justice Okoro. Each of the 16 Justices of the apex court was given millions in dollars by Akpabio on behalf of Udom and Wike. The decision to give all the Supreme Court Justices was because no one knew who would eventually sit on the panel as at that time”, the source declared.
Continuing, she said, “The DSS is also in possession on of evidence of bribe to the panel that eventually sat on the Rivers and Akwa Ibom Petitions. That is why Nigerians should expect more arrests in the days ahead as we are going to overhaul the entire judiciary and cleanse the system of corruption. No one indicted and found wanting will be spared”, she submitted.
In a related development, embattled and detained Supreme Court Judge, Hon Justice Inyang Okoro had a forthnight ago apprached some APC chieftains and elder statesmen from Akwa Ibom State to help intervene on his behalf by pleading with President Mahammadu Buhari to spare him from the ongoing probe, promising to do anything the President may demand from him, a request all the senior elders he met rejected and turned down.
“I think Justice Okoro having drunk from the poisoned chalice anticipated his tragedy, for the past two weeks has been desperately running from pillar to post, appraoching and begging leading APC chieftains to help beg Buhari to spare him from the offensive aimed at sanitising the judiciary. He even promised returning the $3 million Akpabio gave him but it is hard to imagine how he can escape the repercussions of his actions, considering the fact that he was the go-between between Akpabio and other Supreme Court Justices implicated in the bribery scandal”, said a top Secret Service agent who pleaded anonymity because she was not authorised to speak on the matter.
A preliminary report by the DSS indicts Justice Okori, showing how the Akpabio sponsored Supreme Court judge built mansions simultaneously in Ewet Housing Estate of Uyo, Shelter Afrique as well as one in Calabar, just less than three months after the Supreme Court delivered the infamous judgement on the Rivers and Akwa Ibom Governorship petition where the election of both states were upheld in favour of the PDP despite the unimaginable level of rigging, corruption and other electoral malparactices that characterised the election. The verdict of the apex court was widely condermed nationwide and around the globe, with many submitting that it was a crude way of legitimising electoral impunity in the country’s electoral system.
Justice Okoro’s Ewet Housing mansion is alleged to be an underground and the embattled judge was always frequenting the site nocturally at nights to inspect and see the progress of work. Akpabio was alleged to have ordered Governor Udom Emmanuel to make available some amount of money to the Ikono born judge after the judgement was delivered “for a job well done”. Okoro is expected to explain where he got the money to build three multi-billion mansions in relation to his salary as a Supreme Court Judge.
It could be recalled that in a nationwide crackdown, the Federal Government through the DSS last night began rounding up judges established to have aided and abetted corruption in over the years especially in relation to those who allegedly took huge cash to pervert the cause of Justice before, during and after the 2015 general elections.
Two Supreme Court justices, who allegedly played ignoble but crucial roles in subverting judgement in favour of one of the two leading political parties in Akwa Ibom State and another state in the South East were arrrsted.
Three judges from Sokoto, Bauchi and Kano were also taken into custody for allegedly collecting bribes, according to a top source involved in the operation.
Similarly, a popular Federal High Court judge in Abuja from the South West and another who recently countered his colleague’s judgement relating to the ongoing PDP crisis, was also picked up.
Also taken into custody last night, were some suspected fraudulent court registrars, believed to have aided and abetted the sale of justice.
Another federal high court judge, who lives in Apo area of Abuja, had his house surrounded by DSS operatives as at the time of going to press but the secret police could not break in. The judge who recently freed a retired Air Force officer accused of taking bribes running into billions of Naira, was scared and was calling for help, not knowing why he was surrounded by armed security men.
A top Federal Ministry of Justice official said last night: “The Federal Government has commenced the arrest and detention of some corrupt judges as part of its effort to cleanse the judiciary.
“This exercise has just begun and will continue until the bad eggs are flushed out to give the country a new lease of life.
” The operation may not be concluded tonight but I can assure you that we will carry it to a logical conclusion in the overall interest of the nation,” the official said.