While CBN was swift in discovering and freezing bank accounts belonging to key #ENDSARS protesters and supporters, it seems they have been either adamant or weak in discovering accounts belonging to Boko Haram and those sponsoring it.
As no breakthrough has been made in Nigeria to discover those sponsoring Boko Haram, an Abu Dhabi Federal Court of Appeal in United Arab Emirates (UAE) has convicted six Nigerian citizens in UAE over alleged funding of Boko Haram, a terrorist organisation that started in Nigeria.
Their conviction was held up by the appellate court after they had earlier appealed and lost at a lower court.
In a Daily Trust report, two Nigerians, Surajo Abubakar Muhammad and Saleh Yusuf were sentenced to life imprisonment while the rest, Ibrahim Ali Alhassan, AbdurRahman Ado Musa, Bashir Ali Yusuf and Muhammad Ibrahim Isa, were sentenced to ten-year imprisonment each.
In a court document, there is evidence that they were involved in cash transfers of $782,000.00 between 2015 and 2016 to Boko Haram.
The act, according to Article 29, Clause 3 of UAE’s Federal Anti-Terrorism Law No 7 of 2017, is a crime punishable by the law.
The National Security Bureau of Nigeria had said that investigation confirmed their involvement and membership of the terrorist organisation.
The culprits were arrested between April 16 and 17, 2017 as their homes got searched according to the search warrant issued by the National Security Prosecution office dated April 16, 2017.
Abubakar and Adamu were both found to have joined Boko Haram intentionally and this is against Article 22/2 of UAE’s Federal Anti-Terrorism Law No 7 of 2017 punishable by death or life imprisonment.
Alhassan, Musa, Yusuf and Isa were reportedly charged with helping the terrorist organisation intentionally which is a crime under Article 31, Clause 1 of the same law which is punishable by life imprisonment or at least five years in jail.
A majority of the transactions that were facilitated by undercover Boko Haram agents who are based in Nigeria. One of them is “Alhaji Ashiru” described as a Nigerian government official while another is “Alhaji Sa’idu”.
Alhaji Ashiru was reportedly funnelling misappropriated public funds to terrorists.
Sa’idu would use unidentified Arab persons who are visiting Dubai from Turkey to hand over US Dollars to one of the convicts who would then pay the Naira equivalent to the agent.
The families of those convicted have insisted that they were set up and that they have been legitimately dealing on Bureau De Change in UAE.
Recall that Gist Afrique reported that on 26th October 2020, Philip Walton, a US citizen was taken hostage by Jihadists in a village close to Nigerian border and was rescued by the US special forces.