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James Ibori Jailed In UK For Stealing $250 Million, Nigerians Celebrating Him Are Criminals – Falana

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James Ibori Jailed In UK For Stealing $250 Million, Nigerians Celebrating Him Are Criminals – Falana

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Feb 23, 2017 – James Ibori Jailed In UK For Stealing $250 Million, Nigerians Celebrating Him Are Criminals – Falana

HR Lawyer Falana today said it is disgusting for ex-Governor James Ibori, an ex-convict to be celebrated in his hometown.

The Human Rights activists who spoke at the Symposium in memory of late activist, Pa Alfred Ilenre at the Femi Falana Chamber, Ikeja, Lagos, Southwest Nigeria, said the gathering to celebrate Ilenre was one of integrity, but lamented that people celebrate criminals in the nation today.

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His words:

“A criminal, a man who told them in England that ‘I am a thief’ and went to jail, the man came here and said ‘I am not a thief’. Our comrade (Ilenre) used to fight all those who are making a mockery of religion by deceiving us, all those bishops, the fake ones among them, how can anybody compare a convicted criminal in the UK with Jesus Christ. This is the height of blasphemy and that is what is going on in our country.

“Somebody shop-lifted in the UK in 1991 and was convicted. He was involved in credit fraud in 1992, he was convicted; in 1995, he stole building materials in Abuja, he was convicted, but they said they could not find the record. In 2012, he was convicted in the UK, he pleaded guilty, it is a different matter if he pleaded not guilty, he said ‘I am guilty, I am a thief,’ for allegedly stealing $250 million from the poor Delta State, he was jailed, the man now came out of prison, how can they be celebrating a criminal?” .

Falana also said that in memory of Ilenre, all the looted money the Federal Government had recovered from political criminals were spent on providing healthcare for the people and jobs for the youth.

“All the money they are recovering now, they have recovered millions, the last one recovered in Lagos was $153 million, that same person, we were told has a house in Banana Island, it is another place entirely where a flat is $250,000, about N300 million per annum in this Lagos, so if they are recovering these assets and money, please, let us insist that this money should not be distributed through the federation account; don’t put it in the budget because it is going to be lost.

“We are suggesting that all the recovered looted money should be put in a dedicated account and a committee of patriots drawn from labour, women group, student group and youths should be constituted and let that committee manage this fund on job creation and fixing of our hospitals. If you put $50 million for job creation, if you multiply $50 million by N500 today, that is about N25 billion and we can go further and say that N72 billion should be set aside, N2 billion per state for job creation so that we can take many of our young men and women out of unemployment.

“The second one is for us to fix our hospitals. If anybody is still saying there is no money, he is talking rubbish; it is a matter of priority. Awo devoted more than 50% to education and health and at that time, there were no contractors, all our roads were handled by Public Works Department, PWD, but today money for roads go to contractors. At that time Awo’s schools were built by local communities but today, they are built by contractors, we have some of the best engineers in the ministry and they are never used. Let us insist that this recovered loot, don’t do it like the Abacha loot because the loot can be re-looted,” Falana said



  1. Uzoma

    February 23, 2017 at 8:28 PM

    Thank you and God bless you Mr. Falana. Tell them the truth. This is one of the reasons it will be very difficult to fight and eradicate corruption in Nigeria. Those celebrating a thief are thieves themselves. This is a man who stole Delta State blind, siphoned their collective funds to himself and his children even a two year old then. Greater shame should go to those senators and reps. who went to celebrate with him in London. Ibori went to jail while he was working as a clerk in a convenient store in London, he came back to Nigeria, became a governor and did the biggest stealing for which himself, his attorney, his shameless married “ashawo”mistress all went to prison in London and people throng out to celebrate him. It is a pity that in Nigeria honesty does not pay. It has taking the backseat and dishonesty, the front seat and the driver.
    Even Buhari who claim to be fighting corruption is more corrupt than corruption itself. Remember the over 2 billion dollars that was traced to his account in midland bank in London when he was in charge of petroleum task fund, his floating of a fake company with his uncle to manage the fund, his current appointments of his relatives and Fulani kinsmen to very top positions in the country in the current administration? his opposition to Peter Onu, a Nigeria to become the secretary general of OAU and instead campaigned and voted for Ide Oumarou, his fellow Fulani from Niger republic instead. I give him one credit and that is him realizing that corruption has eaten deep into the fabrics of this country and something should be done about it.

  2. kunle

    February 23, 2017 at 10:44 PM

    Naija nawa

  3. Maggie

    February 23, 2017 at 11:30 PM

    @Uzoma You’ve just explained why criminals are celebrated in Nigeria, when Buhari stole 2 billion dollars, he did so on behalf his Fulani Clansman and no one spoke out. Nigerians are not Nigerians, every tribe is clamouring for one of its own to hit the jackpot and steal on their behalf.
    When Tinubu is openly the owner of half of Lagos and Ogun State prime real estate, how many Yorubas do you see speaking about it. Everyone is looking for the sins of the other tribes. It’s all clan rivalry; the agenda they all have is to get rich unscrupulously while other tribes work for it like fools.

  4. fifelomo

    February 24, 2017 at 7:24 AM

    @Uzoma said it all.

  5. Endurance

    February 24, 2017 at 7:36 AM

    Mr Falana has said the mind of many Nigerians. Our people from all ethnic background encourages corruption irrespective of the post their own persons held politically. the grim picture portrayed by the Uhrobos in the case of James Ibori further shows why corruption in Nigeria will continue to preclude or impede the development we so much desired in our country. If we can seriously jubilate the coming back of a politically corrupt person who clearly stole our money and not Delta state money,then the thought of witnessing a Nigeria free of corruption should be considered a mere illusion. Their is no way we can kill corruption if we individually are corrupt ourselves. It is a total shame and disgrace on out part to be seen by UK government that we are jubilating a criminal that serve jail term in their country for stealing our money. Take for instance, the end of the first 4 years of Buhari administration is rapidly responding without any accountability to our recovered loots. No good roads, no job for the thousands of our graduates that pass out every year,our naira continue to depreciate in value without control,food prices are unstable in the markets,all of this despite the fact that we continue to drill 2.2 million barrel of oil every day from this country. Just tell me how we can end corruption in Nigeria if everything about us is corrupt. No truth,no transparency,no accountability. We have become an object of mockery to the world. They deport us virtually on a daily basis from their countries. They kill us in foreign countries without justice all because of the corruption of our leaders who deprived us of our right in our oil-rich country. God will adversely judge our leaders and those who support them in their criminal acts.

  6. Bok

    February 24, 2017 at 8:10 AM

    Nigerians have history of celebrating bad people, shame to you all.

  7. Jordan jonhson

    February 24, 2017 at 4:20 PM

    I have said this so many times Nigeria ???????? is fucked up properly you people keep on dreaming and wishing and fasting and praying nonsense in the next ten years you people will still say hope and change is coming what nonsense gather all these political bastards and ratatata all of them plus there entire family and then sweep then maybe there will be change these is why Biafra is eminent but Biafra is not the solution if Igbos are serious about themselves then all the have to do is summon all serious minded igbo billionaires all over the planet to come back and develop the whole of east and south the can effectively Biafra will unite and the whole world will listen ????

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