Contrary to denials by the Nigerian Police Force that a warrant of arrest has not been issued on Nasir el-Rufai and Nuhu Ribadu, A national newspapers, NEXT has obtained copies of the document which showed that the police indeed had orders to arrest both men.
The spokesperson of the Nigerian Police, Emmanuel Ojukwu, had denied reports that the office of the Inspector General, Ogbonnaya Onovo, was seeking the arrest of Mr. Ribadu, the former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and Mr. El-Rufai, former minister of the Federal Capital Territory.
“I am just not aware of such a thing and if it is a warrant, it is not the duty of the police to issue a warrant. Our job is to obey court orders,” Mr. Ojukwu told NEXT in a telephone interview on December 07.
But the warrant, issued on November 05, was addressed to all Heads of Departments and Divisional Police Officers in the Federal Capital Territory, and states that:
“The Nigeria Police is watch-listing the above-named persons (Nasir Ahmed El-Rufai and Nuhu Ribadu) for acts contrary to Sections 96, 120, 123 and 124 CAP 532 laws of the federation of Nigeria” as well as “some provisions of the Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Act (of) 2000.”
Urging the senior police officers to treat the matter as important, the document also instructs them to “bring this to the knowledge” of their officers and “arrest them if seen.” Telephone calls made to Mr. Ojukwu by NEXT to seek his reactions were not answered, while a text message was also not replied as at press time.