. Why the incarcerated CSO may remain in jail ‘forever’
By Our Correspondent
Barely six days to the hearing of former Chief Security Officer (CSO) to late General Sani Abacha, Major Hamza Al-Mustapha’s appeal against his controversial death sentence last year by a Lagos High Court, DESERT HERALD can confirm that the state is yet to file its defense in an attempt to further prolong the proceeding and to delay justice for as long as possible. It would be recalled that Al-Mustapha after almost fourteen years in incarceration was sentence to death for his alleged role in the murder of late Kudirat Abiola but the former CSO faulted the highly controversial judgment and directed his legal team to challenge the judgment at a higher court.
During the administrative hearing on 15th February, 2013 the Court of Appeal had directed the state to file its defense within seven days but more than two months after and barely few days to the commencement of proper hearing this paper can reveal that in its usual maneuvering to frustrate and prolong the trial deliberately did not file its defense which by implication will lead to further adjournment of the case.
This paper learnt that the defense intends to seek for additional time when the court will resume on 29th April, 2013 despite the two months adjournment not only in an effort to frustrate the appeal but to ensure that Almustapha remains perpetually in prison.
Another credible source confided in this reporter that the state is fully convince that they cannot defend the grounds of the controversial conviction that sentenced Almustapha to death hence the delay tactics to prolong and frustrate the case for as long as possible. The source who pleaded not to be mentioned confided in this paper that it is the same process “Almustapha’s detractors used to keep him in prison for fourteen years” and that according to him he is aware of moves and intrigues by vested interest that fought against Almustapha’s freedom over the years of efforts to bribe the Lagos Appeal Court judge but could not confirm whether whether the purported bribe was given or not. “But I can tell you without fear of contradiction that whatever the state/prosecution requested; extension of time or whatsoever they may get it. It is only Allah that will do justice to Almustapha. The evil forces against him are determined to spend whatever it will cost including using their influence as well to ensure Almustapha’s sentence is either executed or he stays in prison for as long as they are alive. But we believe that his creator is with him. He is very much aware of his travails and insha Allah it will come to an end. For God sake Almustapha’s alleged offense was committed when he is the COS of a sitting head of state. Where are General Bamaiyi and Sargent Rogers today? Let’s even assume that he (Almustapha) has directly committed the said offense. Can a military man by his orientation, training and discipline reject any superior orders and remain free from punishment? Who is presently giving orders to the rampant killings of innocent civilians particularly in Maiduguri by the JTF? Can the soldiers reject such orders? Almustapha’s case is a case of selective justice. We have seen a worse form of genocide by politicians and military men in position of power and authority since 1999 and nothing happens to them. They should allow the poor innocent soul to go free. He has already suffered the worse form of human difficulty. People like General Abdulsalami Abubakar should wait for their own turn from Allah. Certainly they will never go free. Divine nemesis has started catching up with many of them. We know”, he revealed.
What remains to be seen is whether the trial judge at the Lagos Court of Appeal will grant additional time and adjournment to the state to file its defense after deliberately failing to do same more than two months after the administrative sitting.