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Ndume: I Had Contact With Boko Haram But…



by Kunle Olasanmi, Abuja
The immediate past majority leader in the senate, who is also standing trial for alleged link with BokoHaram, Senator Ali Ndume yesterday, before Justice Gabriel Kolawole of a Federal High Court admitted having links with Boko Haram.
He however said the link he had with the dreaded sect was as a result of his appointment into presidential committee on security matters by the government to negotiate for peace with the terrorist group.
Ndume, who is now on suspension from the senate, is standing trial before the court for alleged terrorism funding.  He told the court in Abuja that he has no case to answer in the four-count charge brought against him by the federal government .
Ndume told Justice Kolawole that the government has not in any way established a prima facie case against him or link him with the heinous crime.
In a no case submission argued by his counsel, Mr. Rickey Tarfa, Ndume insisted that the charges brought against him by the government since November 30, 2011 has not been proved beyond reasonable doubt as required by law at the end of the prosecution of the case.
He maintained that the charges against him were unjust and unfair because he passed the report of his contact with the terrorists to the then, Vice President, Namadi Sambo and the then DG of DSS.
Ndume further told the court that the charge of failure to disclose information on the workings of Boko Haram cannot be sustained against him because the prosecution did not link any evidence to that effect.
“Clearly from the totality of the evidence adduced by the prosecution, there are no ingredients of the charges proved as required by law. The analysis of the mobile phones seized from the defendant and subjected to forensic examination did not reveal any offence committed,” he added.
The counsel therefore asks the court to strike out the charge against the senator on the grounds that no prima facie case has been established against him to warrant his going to defend himself.
However the prosecution counsel, Mrs. Grace Okafor urged the court to compel Senator Ndume to open his defence on the charges against him on the account that the government witnesses have effectively linked him with the crime.