Alleged Corruption: “You Don’t Indict A Person By Proxy, El-Rufai Must Be Given Fair Hearing” – Ozekhome

Popular human rights lawyer, Mike Ozekhome has said that former Kaduna State governor, Nasir El-Rufai should be given a fair hearing in the probe of his administration.

Recall that INFORMATION NIGERIA had earlier reported that the state’s House of Assembly, set up a committee to probe El Rufai’s government over alleged abuse of office and misappropriation of public funds.

Reacting to the development during an interview on Thursday’s edition of Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily, Ozekhome, hailed the lawmakers over its efforts, adding that the ex governor must be allowed to defend himself amid corruption allegations.

He said: “I’m not a Nostradamus, the man who saw tomorrow, nor am I the oracle at Ile Ife [in Osun State] that will go gaze into the future to pronounce it the next Ooni need to be. So, I wouldn’t be able to know what the outcome would be.

READ MORE: Kaduna Assembly Okays El-Rufai’s Probe Over Alleged Abuse Of Office

“But I think that whatever happens, El-Rufai must be given his right to a fair hearing. The assembly has just merely made a recommendation and told the governor to implement it.

“The governor may look at it and, and feel well, ‘This is not worth the energy at the time. Let’s face other [things]’. Others may say, ‘N423 billion they are accusing him of is not a small amount; let’s dig in.’ So, whatever the outcome would be, don’t forget that El-Rufai also has its own fundamental rights to protect. For example, he may decide to go to court to challenge the indictment itself.

“Maybe you could say he was not given a fair trial. He was never called. I don’t know whether he was called to come and defend himself.

“Was he duly invited? Was he given an opportunity to defend himself? If he was and he chose to stay back, that’s another ball game. So, because I do not have all those duties, it becomes peremptory for me to comment on it

“You don’t indict a person by proxy. No, you don’t, particularly in a matter that has criminal connotations. You can’t do that by proxy. So, it has to be the person.”