Adegboruwa blasts Nigerian government over plans to freeze account without BVN | Nigeria News Today. Your online Nigerian Newspaper f

Human Rights Lawyer, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, has slammed the Nigerian government’s order granting forfeiture of funds in accounts without bank verification number (BVN).

Nnamdi Dimgba, a judge of the Federal High Court, Abuja had granted the directive to CBN and commercial banks last week following an application by Abubakar Malami, attorney-general of the federation (AGF).

But in a statement, Adegboruwa citing section 36(1) of the 1999 constitution (as amended) and Article 7 of the African Charter, said it was not proper to determine the rights of parties in their absence.

He said the BVN was a policy decision that was not “backed by law”.

The lawyer also faulted the “bindingness” of the order on millions of bank customers who he said are not directly parties to the suit.

“I am very well concerned about how we deploy interim orders for permanent purposes, such as to forfeit valuable assets, without any or fair hearing from the person(s) concerned,” the statement read.

“I think it is improper to obtain interim orders to freeze bank accounts of estates that are in dispute between the beneficiaries, of estates of deceased persons that are still being contested, of profits of companies that are still subject to litigation or other disputes, just to mention a few examples of the arbitrariness of these orders.

“There is nothing in section 3 of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act 2011, that makes BVN a condition precedent for operating a bank account in Nigeria. Nothing at all. What the law requires is verifiable identity of the customer, such as name, address, photographs, identity cards, etc. BVN is policy decision of the Central Bank of Nigeria and a court of law should not base its orders on executive policies that are not backed by law.

“I get truly worried with the way we adopt ex-parte applications to determine very serious and weighty issues of law.

“The other point is the bindingness of an ex-parte order upon the whole world and upon all millions of bank customers in Nigeria, who are not directly parties to the suit. How proper is it, for a court to seek to determine the rights of parties in their absence, in view of the clear provisions of section 36(1) of the 1999 Constitution and Article 7 of the African Charter.

“Why this desperation, if one may ask? I support that money suspected to be proceeds of crime should be traced, isolated and forfeited if the owner cannot successfully account for it. But to proceed to seek to forfeit all monies in all banks meant for all customers in Nigeria, on the ground of absence of BVN is manifestly illegal.

“I therefore humbly urge the honourable attorney-general of the federation to review this case with a view to tempering the tenor of these rather outlandish orders.

“The quest to scoop revenue for government should not be at the detriment of the constitutional and fundamental rights of the citizens. Which is why I have been praying that these orders are not real, but rather one of the usual social media gimmicks”‎ he added.

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  1. I pray by placing a curse on everyone who are causing pains to the innocent, hardworking Nigerians home and abroad. They will will never have peace and the almighty God will destroy all they have in their presence. I say again, peace will delude them and their families. Bastards. Here is my story, I travelled abroad to better my life, one getting here, my father kept on advising and encouraging me to invest in Nigeria and I listened as an obedient son. As you all know, it is not easy at all for anyone to make money abroad. I bought shares from First bank and other banks and even Donlop. About 13M naira disappeared. I felt I must have done something to God to be punished like that. But I checked myself and found nothing serious, yet I asked for forgiveness. I have accounts with few dollars and now they want to take away my little change again. I pray, all the involved will never witness peace. I live in Prince George, B.C. and they told me to go to Toronto to do BVN, it took me 2 flights to get there and I spent about 11 hours to arrive in Toronto. Only to be told that the place was no more in operation whereas they said, I should go there. Bad people. They put only one center in Canada. I am ashamed to call myself a Nigerian. All the leaders should bury their heads in shame. Because they don't know God talk less of fearing God. I told First bank that I wanted to close my account and so that I can have my money refunded and they said 'no'. Can you believe this? Now I see that they don't care. And I have since stopped doing anything in Nigeria. The lesson I learnt is that, don't do anything with where you don't live in. It is dangerous. Why can't they make few centers available in Canada that will be accessible to people. What kind of human beings are Nigerians. It is shameful and sad.

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