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Justice Odili’s House Invasion: Malami Kicks As Suspect Says He Works For Him



The Police High Command on Thursday paraded 14 suspects over the invasion of the Abuja residence of a Supreme Court Justice, Mary Odili, describing them as impostors who were unknown to any of the nation’s security forces..

Force Spokesman, Frank Mba, who paraded the suspects  at the Force Headquarters Annex, Abuja, said that they and seven others now at large conspired to raid the residence following information provided by self acclaimed whistleblower that the Supreme Court Justice was keeping a large sum of money in foreign currencies at her  residence

This came just as the prime suspect, Lawrence Ajodo, described as a fake Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) insisted that he was working for the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mallam Abubakar Malami. .

He, however, conceded that he was not sent to forge the signatures and the documents found on him. 

Speaking, Mba stated that following the failed unlawful attempt to raid the residence of the Supreme Court Justice by some people who presented themselves as security agents and members of Asset Recovery Panel from the office of the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Usman Alkali Baba, ordered the Federal Investigation Bureau (FIB) of the Nigeria Police Force to carry out a comprehensive investigation into the matter.

He added that AGF also petitioned the IGP’ over the unfortunate incident which, he said. called for a thorough investigation to identify those behind the illegal act and their motive.

Mba further explained that during the course of an investigation, it was discovered that the act was perpetrated by a syndicate made up of characters from various fields of endeavours including journalism, law profession, a Clerk with the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, and the military amongst others

According to him, “it has been discovered that the failed raid was a well-conceived one with many actors and actresses drawn from various endeavours. 

“The man who claimed to be a CSP with the Nigeria Police Force was never police personnel. The Identity card he was parading was a forged one. The identity card he claimed to have been issued by the AGF, Mallam Abubakarkar Mallami, was also forged. There is a Journalist, two lawyers and who conspired to carry out the illegal operation.”

Mba said that the prime suspect, Lawrence Ajodo, who claimed to be a Chief Supretiedent of Police, that led the illegal operation and purported to be operating under Asset Recovery Panel from the office of the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, was not an officer of the Nigeria Police Force but an impostor.

According to him the fake CSP and his syndicate succeed in securing a search warrant from the court after swearing an affidavit by one Ali Ibrahim, a member of the group who claimed that a huge sum of money in foreign currencies was being kept in the building.

He added that, after this, the syndicate contacted some operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), two soldiers from the Lungi Barracks, Asokoro, Abuja,  a journalist with a leading newspaper in the country, for the illegal operation after a series of meetings were perfected for the illegal act.

According to Mba, the syndicate however met a brick wall when the security operatives attached to the residence of Justice Odili put up resistance and demanded their true identities before they raised the alarm.

While commending the resistance of the security guards, the police spokesman observed that it would have been a great embarrassment to the nation and the International community if the operation had succeeded.

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Mba who further said that efforts were being stepped up to track down the fleeing members of the syndicate including two military personnel, declared that the suspects would be charged to court on the completion of the ongoing Investigations, for criminal offences ranging from conspiracy, trespass, forgery to accessory amongst others. 

However, speaking with newsmen the prime suspect, Ajodo insisted that he was working for the AGF even though he was not sent to forge documents.  

He said: “I work for Mallam Abubakar Malami as a consultant of recoveries. I was given 18 accounts to recover though Malami did not send me on this mission. But I am a banking expert with a speciality in finance and forensic.”

On his part, the journalist paraded with the suspects, Stanley Nkwazema, claimed that he was following a story lead on that day based on the clue given to him by one of the arrested lawyers that a raid was going to be carried out by an Asset Recovery Panel under the office of the AGF, adding that he was not part of the syndicate as being alleged.

Also speaking, Ali Umar Ibrahim, said he was the whistleblower, who also swore to an affidavit that there were millions of cash in various foreign currencies being stashed away in the house.

The suspect, who claimed to be a prayer warrior, said that he was introduced to the godson of Justice Odili and he prayed to know if the story was true. 

While affirming that he went through the EFCC to make his act formal, he added that he survived the invaders to Justice Odili’s house. 

Meanwhile, the AGF has distanced himself from “CSP” Ajodo who claimed to be a consultant to his office. 

Reacting to the confessional statement he made while being paraded Thursday, the AGF said his office could not have descended low to use his services given the vast resources at its disposal. 

A statement issued by Dr Umar Jibrilu Gwandu, (Special Assistant on Media and Public Relations, Office of the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice) challenged the suspect to produce evidence of engagement by the AGF’s office. 

The statement read: “The attention of the Office of the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice has been drawn to a confession of a suspect during interrogation in the investigation of the recent invasion of the residence of the highly respected Justice of the Supreme Court; Justice  Mary Peter Odili. 

“With all the competent, high-level professionals and capable human resources available at the disposal of the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, it only takes the imagination of the evil minds to assume or think that the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice will descend so low to engaging a quack or fake police officer to serve as his consultant.

“This is a case of a drowning man scavenging for a dying partner. 

“We are happy to note that investigation has commenced unravelling the circumstances and personalities behind the invasion and sponsored campaign of calumny against the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice. 

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“It is our desire and we hope that the investigation would also disclose those after the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, those dragging his personality, his name and his exalted office in the dirty politics of disrepute. This is an orchestrated attempt to stir unnecessary controversies and Public apprehension. 

“We asked the suspect to present documents of engagements where he worked as a consultant to the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, whether in past or now. 

“Consultant for what? Which activity or assignment? When was he engaged? What were the terms of references for the alleged consultancy service? When was he engaged? Where was he engaged? Which work has he executed for the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and the Ministry of Justice? For what duration? And for how much?

“We boldly and unequivocally challenge the fake consultant/police officer to come out with answers or responses to these questions to the general public. 

“The Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice superintends over and respects the rule of law who will not do anything to undermine the sanctity of his office and that that entire judiciary and Justice sector.”

Also reacting to the parade, ThisDay newspaper denied that one of the suspects, Nkwazema is a staff of the organization. 

A statement issued by Bolaji Adebiyi, Managing Editor (Print and Digital) said even though, he was a staff of the newspaper, he resigned 15 years ago. 

The statement added: “The attention of the management of THISDAY NEWSPAPERS has been drawn to the news making the rounds that Mr Stanley Nkwazema, one of those suspected to have invaded the home of Justice Mary Odili claimed to be a staff and Contributing Editor of THISDAY.

“Contrary to his claim, Mr Nkwazema is neither a Staff of THISDAY nor a Contributing Editor. He was a Sports Correspondent and resigned more than 15 years ago.

“However, occasionally, he, like hundreds of other readers of the newspaper, sends for publication articles and analyses and is usually obliged, a privilege THISDAY gives to some of its ex-staff.  That does not in any way make him a staff and contributing Editor of THISDAY. 

“Since his resignation, THISDAY had at no time contracted Mr Nkwazema to investigate any story, and we know nothing of his alleged investigation of a story leading to the raid of the residence of Hon. Justice Odili.

“The police authorities and the general public should, therefore, note that Mr Nkwazema, whatever may be his involvement in this matter, was not acting on behalf of THISDAY in any shape or form.”