President Buhari has placed a travel ban on 50 high profile Nigerians.
This is contained in a statement issued by the presidency via its Twitter handle, @NGRPresident.
Premium Times also quotes presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu as saying that the move is in-line with the government’s desire to fully implement Executive Order Number 6.
Though the names of those on the list were not disclosed, Buhari’s spokesman reportedly said individuals whose assets are from N50m above and are being investigated for corruption, will be affected.
Simple explanation of Executive Order Number 6.
Executive Order 6 was signed by President Buhari on July 5, 2018, and it is aimed at confiscating assets of corrupt persons and institutions.
The order mandates the forfeiture of all asset as proceeds of corruption pending the final determination by court.
Simply put in lay man terms, it seeks to protect from frittering away the assets of any Nigerian who has been indicted for taking part in any form of corrupt enrichment.
According to Shehu, “the financial transactions of these persons of interest are also being monitored by relevant agencies to ensure the assets are not dissipated and that such persons do not interfere with, investigation and litigation processes.”
The statement reads:
Following the instant judicial affirmation of the constitutionality and legality of the Executive Order 6 (EO6), President Muhammadu Buhari has mandated the Attorney-General of the Federation and the Minister of Justice to implement the Order in full force.
To this end, a number of enforcement procedures are currently in place by which the Nigeria Immigration Service and other security agencies have placed no fewer than 50 high profile persons directly affected by EO6 on watch-list and restricted them from leaving the county pending the determination of their cases.
Also, the financial transactions of these persons of interest are being monitored by the relevant agencies to ensure that the assets are not dissipated and such persons do not interfere with, nor howsoever corrupt the investigation and litigation processes.
It is instructive to note that EO6 was specifically directed to relevant law enforcement agencies to ensure that all assets within a minimum value of N50 million or equivalent, subject to investigation or litigation are protected from dissipation by employing all available lawful means, pending the final determination of any corruption-related matter.
The Buhari administration reassures all well-meaning and patriotic Nigerians of its commitment to the fight against corruption, in accordance with the 1999 Constitution (as amended) and the general principles of the Rule of Law.
Accordingly, this administration will uphold the rule of law in all its actions and the right of citizens would be protected as guaranteed by the Constitution.
We, therefore, enjoin all Nigerians to cooperate with the law enforcement authorities towards ensuring a successful implementation of the Executive Order 6 which is a paradigm-changing policy of the Federal Government in the fight against corruption.
Views on Executive Order Number 6
Most observers are of the opinion that the President, by signing Executive Order Number 6 has gone against the principle of separation of powers as contained in the 1999 constitution.
Other legal experts say the move is aimed at usurping the powers of the courts.
According to Daily Trust, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Act, 2004 and the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) Act, 2000 already have clearly stated provisions for asset forfeiture.