Former Senate Majority Leader, Senator Ali Ndume, on Tuesday, asked a Federal High Court, in Abuja, to quash the alleged sponsorship of Boko Haram case against him, because he has no case to answer in the matter.
Ndume, who accepted that he had contact with the Boko Haram sect, however, said that he got the contact when he was appointed into the Presidential Committee on Security Matters, to negotiate for peace with the terrorists.
Insisting that the charges against him were unjust, the Senator explained that the former Vice President, Namadi Sambo, and the then Director-General of the Department of State Security Services, DSS, were aware of the said contact with Boko Haram.
However, the Federal Government told the court that Ndume has to defend himself, because its witnesses have proved that he had information on the sect, which he refused to disclose to government.
Recall, that Ndume who is under suspension at the Senate, has since 2011, been on trial on a four-count charge bordering on allegations of supporting the activities of the Boko Haram terrorist group, leveled against him by the Federal Government.
However, the Lawmaker in a no-case submission filed before Justice Gabriel Kolawole, through his Counsel, Ricky Tarfa, argued that the Federal Government has been unable to establish a prima facie case against him, or linked him with the said crime.
He insisted that the charges leveled against him have not been proven beyond reasonable doubt as required by law, at the end of the prosecution’s case.
Tarfa, Ndume’s Counsel argued: “Clearly, from the totality of the evidence adduced by the prosecution, there is no ingredient of the charges proved as required by law.
“The analysis of the mobile phones seized from the defendant and subjected to forensic examination by the prosecution, did not reveal any offence committed.”
Based on the above argument, Counsel to Ndume, prayed the court to strike out the charges against the Senator, because no prima facie case has been established against him, to warrant his going to defend himself.
Nonetheless, the Prosecution Counsel, Grace Okafor, contended Ndume’s prayer, and urged the court to mandate him to open his defence in the charges against him.
Okafor told the court that Ndume has a case to answer, since the government’s witnesses have effectively linked him with the crime.
According to the Prosecutor’s Lawyer, the charge against Ndume borders on his failure to disclose material information to security agents on Boko Haram, and rendering support to the terrorist group.
She further argued that Ndume had in his own statement tendered and admitted in court, confirmed that he has enormous information on Boko Haram, which he never disclosed to government.
Okafor said: “His admission that he was a member of the Presidential Committee on Security Matters, also corroborates the evidence of the prosecution, that he had volume of information on the terrorists group, which he refused to give to the government.
“The volume of information found on him was revealing, and warranted his being charged to court.
“Let the point be made here that witnesses of the government have by one way or the other, linked the charge against the defendant, and this court as an impartial court, should order the defendant to open defence on the charges against him. It is even in the interest of the defendant and justice, that this case be heard on its own merit, instead of upholding the no-case submission.”