The Northern District Court of Illinois on Tuesday released fresh documents connecting the presidential candidate of the All-Progressive Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, to allegations of narcotics trafficking and money laundering.
Driving the news
The latest documents revealed by the Peoples Gazette disclosed that Tinubu and his cronies engaged in drug dealings “on a large scale and the operations were substantial”.
- Magistrate Rijcklo, who granted the forfeiture order, stated that the funds were “proceeds of narcotics trafficking and further represent property involved in money laundering in violation of 18 USC §§ 1956 and 1957”. The Magistrate also noted that the accounts domiciled in Citibank and Heritage Bank were operated by Tinubu at the time.
- The court also held that, “First Heritage Bank shall issue a check in the amount of $460,000 payable to Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago and that the funds shall be disposed of according to the law.”
Why it matters
Mr. Tinubu, the former Lagos State governor, has continued to receive backlash and political onslaught from the Nigerian public for several reasons including drug allegations, falsifying his age, having a health crisis, altering educational credentials, etc. just to fulfill his lifelong ambition of being Nigeria’s president.
- The latest public scrutiny is coming less than three months to Nigeria’s next presidential elections in which Tinubu is a leading candidate.
The big picture
Looking forward, the series of baggage that hangs over the Presidential candidate of Nigeria’s ruling party could tilt the support of undecided voters to other opposition parties.
Nigerians could take legal actions to protest the candidacy of the former Lagos state governor. Kalu Agu, an Abuja-based lawyer with ties to opposition politics, has petitioned the EFCC and NDLEA, Nigeria’s anti-graft and anti-narcotics departments, respectively, to probe Mr. Tinubu’s involvement in the drug charges before the presidential elections in February.
The petition, Mr. Kalu Agu gave both agencies seven days to launch an action against Mr. Tinubu or be compelled through a judicial order of mandamus.