The senator representing Borno South District on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Ali Ndume, has declared support for the move by Lagos lawyer, Femi Falana (SAN), to petition the International Criminal Court in The Hague, over the misapplication of funds meant to fight Boko Haram by some officials of the past administration.
Ndume, who is the Senate leader, said he would willingly testify at the ICC against those mentioned in Mr. Falana’s petition.
It would be recalled that the Senior Advocate of Nigeria and human rights activist had in a petition dated January 19, 2016 and sent to the Prosecutor of the ICC, Fatou Bensouda, requested the Court to “investigate allegations of crimes against humanity committed against the Nigerian people by some former and serving military as well public officials and private persons who engaged in the criminal diversion of $8 billion earmarked to procure equipment for the armed forces to fight insurgency”.
Specifically, Mr. Falana mentioned a former National Security Adviser, NSA, who is currently standing trial for the alleged diversion of over $2.1 billion arms deal funds, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.) and former Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala as persons of interest the ICC should probe.
Speaking in an interview with Daily Trust, Sen. Ndume said: “We are supporting the government in the investigation and recovery of the funds. In fact, we are saying the government should take the case to Hague”.
While hailing Falana, who represented majority of the soldiers and officers charged with mutiny, cowardly behaviour and sundry offences before the courts-martial, for petitioning the ICC, the Senate leader said “If need be, I’m willing to testify at the ICC against those who collected the money meant for the Boko Haram war. This is because I am a victim too. We stand by Falana and we are going to support him to pursue the case at the ICC. We are not surprised that Falana has taken the case further because he is always by the side of the oppressed”.
The senator also accused all those indicted in the probe of the alleged misappropriation of the arms fund of being Boko Haram sponsors.
“As far as we are concerned, these people shared blood money. Borno elders have made our position known on this through a statement they issued. We stand by our elders’ statement that anybody who shared from the money meant for the purchase of arms to fight Boko Haram, is part of the sect, or they are sponsors of the sect. There are classes of Boko Haram – the army of Boko Haram, the supporters of Boko Haram and the sponsors of Boko Haram. Those people that shared the money for the purchase of arms are part of Boko Haram”, he stated.