Before I commence this expository, it is instructive to disabuse your mind that the former Pension boss, Dr. Abdurasheed Maina Jumped the initial bail granted him by Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court, Abuja Division.
He did not violate the terms of his bail at any one time, but only sought for medical attention or risked his knee being amputated.
Is it profitable to watch Maina die before his trial? Or allow justice take its natural cause?
Remember It is only a healthy person that can stand trial. Life is sacred and should be treated as such at all material times no matter what.
The above postulations stand tall and unwavering especially when looked at holistically and objectively with the lens of natural justice and good conscience.
As a Public Affairs Analyst of international repute, I have observed that if Dr. Maina wanted to jump bail and abandon his trial, Niger Republic would not be his destination. He would have eloped to the United States of America where he is a bonafide citizen without criminal records.
Therefore, it is a beer parlour argument to say a brainy personality like Maina wanted to jump bail. It does not hold a single drop of water at all.
By way of bringing you closer to true facts, Maina was arraigned sometime in October 2019 on politically motivated money laundering charges by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, after he insisted that the Magu led EFCC should account for the over 237 properties recovered by the Pension Regorm Task Team, to which EFCC was a member.
Shortly after arraignment, he was granted bail by the honorable court on haculean terms, which has never been given even to terrorists and or those with treasonable offences. That bail would scare anyone to death. It was done in such a way that which would be difficult for any normal human being to meet, but Maina eventually perfected the worst ever bail conditions in Nigeria after he had spent more than 9 calender months in unnecessary custody.
However, as a result of the period spent in custody, his fragile health took a turn for the worse and he urgently sought medical attention upon his release on bail.
In October 2020, he was absent during his trial because he had to undergo a medical procedure on his knee, this was communicated to the honorable court, attaching his medical report.
Since the court declined to honour the said medical report, his counsel informed him on the 29th of October 2020 at about 4pm in his hospital bed at Maitama General Hospital, that the honorable court discountenanced his medical report and instead revoked his bail and ordered for his arrest.
If you were in Maina’s Shoe, what would you do at this crossroad hour? Would your instinct not tell you that the judge who failed to honour your medical report would do more hurting things to you? Let that be in your mind.
As a result of the order for his arrest, he decided to seek for a better medical facility for the treatment of his knee, and was eventually referred to the Military Hospital in Chad and Niger Republic. His family opted for Niger due to the insurgency along the Chad axis, where the knee surgery was successfully carried out.
He was recuperating from the surgery at the Military Hospital in Niamey when his Doctor informed him of presence of Authorities making enquires about him, and offered to take him to a secure place through a route, but he refused to run. He thereafter placed several calls to his larger Family where a decision was made to allow the Authorities see him, where they discussed at length and he subsequently agreed to follow them back to Abuja then taken into custody.
His detention in Kuje Correctional Center has worsened his medical condition which continues to deteriorate to a point where death is very near. “This man did not kill anyone, nor did he rob anyone or any institution”. “Why do we keep hearing Maina Maina instead of all the other members of the Pension Reform Task Team”?
What shall we gain if we lose this amazon to the cold hands of death before his trial is successfully completed?
For the avoidance of doubt, Maina’s lawyer, Anayo Adibe some time ago made a disclosure at a press briefing in Abuja that Maina has been taken to the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital, Gwagwalada after his serious medical complications had failed to respond to treatment at the Kuje Correctional facility.
In his exact words, he said: “I have gone to see him. He is having serious health challenges. From my findings Maina suffered partial stroke as a result of hitting his head on the floor when he collapsed in front of Justice Abang and Lawyers in the open court. The Doctor at the Federal High Court had checked his blood pressure after the collapse which had a reading of 242/150 and that also caused the slight bleeding in the brain. His hypertension is life-threatening.”
“He has been stooling uncontrollably for six weeks now and they have administered all the drugs available to them but he is still stooling today, and can hardly move his legs and other parts of his body.”
“I can confirm that he is now being attended to at the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital in Gwagwalada but I learnt they have taken him back to the correctional facility two days ago to continue his treatment.”
“Series of scans were run on him including MRI, CT SCAN , ECG, KIDNEY, LIVER TESTS and others to determine the true state of his health.” “ The result is alarming.
He said “Although the Leadership of the Correctional Service have tried very well, to keep Maina’s health under control, it is unfortunate the facility is not equipped enough to give him adequate medical attention, hence an urgent need for the court to grant Maina bail so that he can attend to his health problem.”
In a recent Phone Conversation, Mainas Lawyer Barr Anayo had told journalists that Maina’s health worsened very badly, when he heard that his only son cannot be accounted for by the EFCC and or police, even after his car was recently recovered from the Sokoto State Police Command, without any information about his whereabout.
To track what Maina’s lawyer said about his client’s health condition, I discovered that Maina made several visits to the said hospital, following life-threatening ailments. In fact
Let me posit further that except the honorable Court grants Maina a fresh bail on health grounds in the most liberal terms, for the purpose of receiving urgent medical attention, where his family can offer their assistance to him in a well equipped Hospital of their choice, I fear for his precious life.
Nothing stops the court from placing him on surveillance which may include regular phone calls to the Court Registrar, or visit to the Court once a week to sign a standing register , and registering with court whatever health facility he will be admitted to, anywhere in Nigeria.
To avoid miscarriage of Justice, I implore Justice Okon Abang to handle Maina’s case with uthmost wisdom and caution, and grant him bail in favourable terms, which are achievable in few days, in view of his deteriorating health condition because the case against him is even politically inclined, which is a public knowledge..
How can a person who worked hard to recover N1.3TR for the Buhari administration, as confirmed by the Authorities with an agreement to be paid N65b. Being 5% whistle blowers fees, be humiliated in this Government of anti corruption, instead of being rewarded? Posterity will surely judge us and show the world the truth behind these seemingly retinue of politically motivated trumped up charges being meted against innocent and patriotic Nigerian. The Almighty shall also judge us.
The enemies of this administration are the ones behind Maina’s travails because they do not want President Buhari to succeed, and do not want Maina to reveal where other such funds are being hidden. Am very sure hundreds of Millions of Naira has been spent by the powers that be in using the Media to destroy a hard earned image by a patriotic Nigerian in the person of Abdulrashid Maina.
I have done my findings which took me to some parts of this country and I have also been opportuned to meet responsible public officers and Senior Security agents who worked with Maina, where I concluded that Maina has the brains and technical expertise to recover the much needed funds to run this administration instead of borrowing money up and down.
Truth is bitter but it is a universal commodity valued by people of integrity. I am not a Northerner and haven’t met Maina, but the truth is sacrosanct and need to be told.
Dr, Mrs Angela Okafor,
Public Affairs Analyst,
Writes From Obodo Ukpa, Enugu State.