Extradition: Buruji Kashamu Denies Plans To Join APC
By Abiodun Oluwarotimi
A Senator representing the Ogun East Senatorial District, Senator (Prince) Buruji Kashamu, on Saturday night denied plans to defect to the All Progressive Congress (APC) in order to make the federal government set aside plans to extradite him to the United States to face drug-related charges.
It would be recalled that an online portal, yemojanews.com has published an article that went viral over the weekend, saying that the senator had ran to the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo, to help him (Buruji Kashamu) appeal to President Muhammadu Buhari to accept him into the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and to starve off his purported extradition.
But while reacting in a press statement sent to Nigerian Concord, Special Adviser to Senator Kashamu Buruji on Media and Publicity, Mr. Austin Oniyokor, said there was no iota of truth in the claim that the senator had any plans to join the APC.
The senator’s media aide noted that his principal had stated time and again that his support for the anti-corruption war of the President should not be misconstrued as ditching his party, the PDP, for the APC.
Assuring that Senator Kashamu remains and would always remain a member of the PDP, Mr. Oniyokor stressed that the issue of recruiting some people to soften the ground for his defection did not arise.
Meanwhile, Nigerian Concord had an exclusive interview with Judge Eric Fulbright, deputy judge of the Chicago District Court, where he said that the US Department of Justice didn’t make any request to extradite the lawmaker. (Full interview to be published shortly)
“Our attention has been drawn to a wishy washy report by a budding online news portal, www.yemojanews.com (what a name!) to the effect that Senator Buruji Kashamu approached the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo and the Awujale of Ijebuland, Oba Sikiru Adetona, to help him appeal to President Muhammadu Buhari to accept him into the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and to starve off a purported extradition of the senator.
“Ordinarily, we would have ignored this latest effort to blackmail the senator since we know where it is coming from (it would be addressed at the appropriate place and time), but for the wrong impression it might create in the mind of his associates, teeming supporters and admirers across the length and breadth of Ogun State, and beyond.
“First, there is no iota of truth in the claim that Senator Kashamu has any plans to join the APC. He has stated time and again that his support for the anti-corruption war of the President should not be misconstrued as ditching his party, the PDP, for the APC. And that he remains and would always remain a member of the PDP. So, the issue of recruiting some people to soften the ground for his defection does not arise.
“Secondly, the publishers of this piece of misguided report have only succeeded in exposing their ignorance of our jurisprudence. Otherwise, they should have known that no fresh extradition proceedings can be brought in a case that has been dismissed” the statement reads in parts.
Oniyokor pressed further that in this instance, besides the two British court judgments that established that the allegation against the senator was that of a “mistaken identity”, the purported extradition proceedings commenced against the senator in the last days of the immediate past administration was dismissed by the court on the 1st of July, 2015, as “an abuse of court process”, especially when the same issues as were put before the court had been decided by two British courts.
“Is it not ludicrous for anyone to think that anyone would lobby our revered traditional rulers to beg Mr. President to bend the rules. Who, except the warped minds behind this fabricated report, does not know that Mr. President and the current Attorney-General of the Federation are men of integrity and apostles of the Rule of Law? he asked.
The statement continues: “Even if anyone has a case against the senator in court, is it outside the court that the matter will be determined? Does the judiciary not have its own procedure and processes? Is it not distinct and separate from the executive or even the legislative arm of government? If anyone in the executive or legislature can easily influence them, then why do they lose their cases in court?
“For the information of those who think they can soil the cordial relationship between Senator Kashamu and the royalty, I have piece of bad news for them: they have only succeeded in re-invigorating it.
“Apart from being the Senator representing Awujale’s domain, Senator Kashamu is a son and an in-law of the palace. Kabiyesi’s younger brother (from the Shote family of Ijebu-Ode) married his immediate elder sister.
“Thus, it is only normal for him to maintain a cordial relationship with the palace of the Awujale and other royal fathers in the state. While we regret any embarrassment that this fabricated lies may have caused the highly revered monarchs, we wish to serve a notice on the publishers of yemojanews that should they fail to retract the report within the days stipulated by law, they will soon hear from the senator’s lawyers, so that they can substantiate their claims in the open court”
On the activities of Omoilu Foundation, Oniyokor stated that no amount of lies and blackmail told by idiots and spread by the ignoramus could obliterate the positive works and testimonies of the foundation. He added that the Omoilu Foundation is an idea whose time has come, and no force on earth can stop it