Fasehun advises Iyabo Obasanjo to come out of hiding

  • Tuesday, April 22, 2008 - By SEGUN AJAYI
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Dr Frederick Fasehun
 Dr Frederick Fasehun
The founder of Oodua People’s Congress (OPC), Dr Frederick Fasehun, has asked Senator Iyabo Obasanjo-Bello to come out of hiding and submit herself to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over her alleged involvement in the N300 million unspent budget scam at the Federal Ministry of Health.

Fasehun, speaking with journalists shortly after the launch of a book entitled, Gani through the Law, written by Mr Richard Akinnola to mark the 70th birthday anniversary of legal luminary, Chief Gani Fawehinmi in Lagos, saw the on-going probes as a welcome development. He advised Senator Obasanjo-Bello not to consider her invitation by the EFCC as punitive or negative, but an opportunity to clear her name. He wondered why the embattled senator is avoiding the anti-corruption body, which was created by her father.

Fasehun, however, said that there should be no sacred cow in the ongoing investigations, stressing that whoever commits any atrocity against the laws of the land should be made culpable.
On whether something positive would come out of the exercise, Fasehun said: “I believe something good will come out of it, since it is coming from a regime that prides itself as a respecter of law and order, and a promoter of the rule of law.”

Earlier, Fasehun had showered encomiums on Fawehinmi at the event, which attracted lawyers and activists, including Mr Femi Falana, Mr Ledun Mitee, leader of the Movement for the Survival of Ogoni Peoples (MOSOP), Senator Olorunnibe Mamora, the Head of the Gani Fawehinmi Chambers, Adindu Ugwuzor, the celebrator’s daughter, Rabiat, the incumbent Lagos NUJ chairman, Mr Wahab Oba and Mrs Funke Fadugba, his predecessor.

Fasehun who said that he owed the legal icon personal gratitude, recalled how he stood up in his defence during his trial for allegedly being the mastermind of bomb blasts across the country during the late General Sani Abacha era. He saluted Fawehinmi’s generosity, boldness, sense of commitment and declared that Nigerians owed him so much.

Falana, who said that he had been in and out of prison with Fawehinmi several times, said the fiery lawyer inspired him to read law. He praised Fawehinmi’s strength of character, indefatigableness, boldness, unsparing disposition and surprisingly, his emotional weakness. He, therefore, commended the author of the book, noting that it was by sheer providence that Gani was still alive, considering what he went through in the hands of the military.

The MOSOP leader, Mitee, said he owed Fawehinmi eternal gratitude for saving him from the hangman. Mitee who is the only survivor of the kangaroo trial of the Ogoni 9, in 1995, praised Gani’s boldness to stand up in defence of the accused, when other lawyers shied away.

The activist, however, expressed concern over public ignorance of Gani’s contributions to national security. He posited that Fawehinmi’s activism had cushioned the problem of national security, having opened opportunities for the oppressed to seek redress through litigations rather than barrels of the gun.
He warned that in a situation where people could not ventilate their grievances through democratic means, they would definitely resort to violence, like the situation in the Niger-Delta.
Others who praised Fawehinmi include Mr Osa Director, Editor-in-Chief, Insider Weekly, Mr Kanayo Esinulo and Senator Mamora.

Akinola while giving insights into the book, explained that he covered Fawehinmi’s journey through the legal profession, his celebrated cases as well as travails and triumphs.

Related Articles:

  • N300m scandal: Why EFCC can’t arrest me – Iyabo Obasanjo (Tuesday, April 22, 2008)
    The embattled daughter of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, immediate past president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Senator Iyabo Obasanjo-Bello says the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has no power to harass and arrest her in connection with the N300 million unspent budget scandal in the Federal Ministry of Health.

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