Abuja - The State Security Services (SSS) has released details of how yet to be arrested judge attached to the Port Harcourt Division of the Federal High Court, Mohammed Liman received bribes in the ongoing crackdown on senior judges across the country, Premium Times reports.
Sources at the State Security Services said Liman, among other corrupt conducts, allegedly took bribes from Governor Nyesom Wike to give favourable judgment to the Ahmed Makarfi-led faction of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The sources also accused the judge of habitually crossing Nigerian borders to allegedly receive bribes from litigants.
Liman is among eight other judges being investigated apart from the seven arrested in the Friday night raids.
The source said Liman allegedly took bribes to subvert justice in the leadership tussle within the PDP which has left the party factionalised for several months.
Liman’s July ruling authenticated the Ahmed Makarfi faction of the PDP which had been deemed illegal by Justice Okon Abang.
“We received a petition that he (Liman) received bribes to give his ruling and our investigations confirmed it,” a top SSS official said.
The source added that Liman is “also a distributor” who receives bribes on behalf of other judges and helps distribute it.
“He travels across the border to Ghana, Republic of Benin and other West African countries to meet lawyers in hotels to take bribes for himself and his colleagues on the bench,” he said.
The source also said the amount involved in Liman’s botched arrest on Saturday morning was actually $2.5 million, and gave more explanation as to why operatives’ failed to arrest the judge or get the money.
“The vehicle that was used to cart away the $2million was faster than our men’s own,” the source said. “They just couldn’t catch up with them at such a high speed. It’s like chasing a 7-cylinder vehicle with a 3-cylinder.”
“We will arrest him in coming days; we have no doubt about this as we have enough evidence to nail him in court. By bringing Governor Wike in, he has worsened his own case.”
The judges who were arrested and had their homes raided by Department
of Security Services (DSS) operatives are set to be arraigned for
corruption after huge sums of money in foreign currencies were
discovered at their homes according to News24.
One of the judges,
Judge Sylvester Ngwuta traveled to Qatar to receive a bribe which he
shared with other judges, to ensure that Governor Wike won his election
case which was heard by the Supreme Court.
Lawyers serving under the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA)
declared a state of emergency in the judiciary after the continued
raiding of judges homes by armed DSS operatives.
President of the association, Abubakar Mahmoud said that the arrest of
the judges was a clear abuse of power by the DSS operatives, who
assaulted and tried to abduct judges in states across the country.
Meanwhile Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose lambasted the invasion of residences of five judges by the DSS security forces.
has labelled the invasion as an attack on the judiciary, saying that it
was now clear to all that the country's democracy was increasingly
under threat by the Buhari administration.
- News 24