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Travel Ban: Presidency insists Executive order legal, constitutional

The Presidency on Sunday has reacted to critics of the execution order six claiming that it is legal and constitutional.

President Muhammadu Buhari on Saturday ordered for full implementation of the new order, with 50 persons suspected of corruption already on the watch list.

In a statement on Sunday by the Senior Special Assistant on Media and publicity, Garba Shehu, the presidency maintained that the new measure will speed up corruption cases in the country.

He said “In the history of independent Nigeria, this is the first time any government is taking such a key decision to fight corruption. EO 6 is not only revolutionary to the efforts to rid Nigeria of corruption but a manifestation of systemic changes that are required to make necessary adjustments as we carry on with the war against corruption.

“The very essence of the order is to make for speedy trials and conclusion of graft cases. The order is not political and there is no political gain behind its activation.”

He added that the high profile corruption cases have been going on for up to 10 years with no end in sight.

According to him, “These case were mostly originated by administrations other than this one. What is clear is that the access to these resources by the suspects has enabled them to be in a composition to sometime compromise investigation, prosecution and trial.

“In most of the cases, the courts are held in a helpless position by legal acrobatics paid for from corrupt enrichment by the suspects,” Shehu stated

He went on “The new measures put in place should compel everyone involved to make for a speedy conclusion of these cases. If it is your money, you have it back. If it belongs to the public, it goes back to the treasury.

“The question of the constitutionality of the restriction order is answered by the fact that a court of the land has given government a clean chit. The Executive Order is legal and constitutional and therefore implementable.

“One of the cardinal objectives of the government under our constitution is to fight corruption. Fighting corruption is a responsibility and obligation upon the government.”

Denying issuing the list of 50 persons on the watch list in circulation, he said “On the so-called list you asked for confirmation, I want to confirm to you that we have not issued any list and we are not doing so.

“These cases that are well known and to say this or that name is on it will open the door to further accusations, including trial by media. The Immigration Service and other security agencies have the mandate of the President to carry out enforcement and they will do so giving due respects to individual rights, in line with the constitution.”

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