The latest news from the Principal Adviser to the Office of the Attorney General and Minister of Justice is that after judgements at the High Court and the Appeals Court, 31 properties belonging to Persons of Interest (POIs) found guilty of corruption by the three Judge led Commission of Inquiry (COI) have been confiscated and will soon become properties of the State.
Out of these 31 properties that have been confiscated by the court, twenty-five of them will soon be handed over to the National Asset and Government Properties Commission (NAGPC), while the remaining six properties whose owners did not Appeal the COI decision will be taken by the State under deeds of gift of conveyances.
Quite recently, the Principal Adviser to the Attorney General, Lahai Momoh Farmer said that they had obtained the orders of confiscation and were on the recovery process. He also noted that government is now in talks with all relevant stakeholders to seize the properties, adding that these properties are situated across the country.
Furthermore, the public notice disclosed that over 100 appeals have been lodged by POIs at the Appeals Court and that 11 of those appeals cases have been judged, 5 dismissed, 6 upheld, 5 reserved for judgement while another 9 are undergoing trials. The five cases that were dismissed are those that did not have the locus standi to appeal the matter.
Furthermore, the office of the Attorney General has filed 2 appeals cases in the Supreme Court, including the case of Diana Finda Konomanyi and SMRT Ltd that were acquitted by the Appeals Court. Mani Koroma and SOGEFEL also filed appeals in the Supreme Court against rulings made against them by the High Court.
In addition to the 23 matters that are still awaiting judicial guidance, with 15 new cases presented to the Appeals Court bringing the total to 55 cases in the Appeals Court. 3 separates of judges are now sitting of the said cases.
According to The Exclusive Press, in September 2020 when President Bio received the reports of the COI established by Constitutional Instruments Nos. 64,65 and 67 of 2018 and the Government White Paper, he maintained that the government will fully implement all recommendations to the letter.
He however emphasized respect for the rule of law, adding that Persons if Interest and entities affected by the recommendations are guaranteed a peaceful and transparent judicial process through which they can seek relief.