“Jonathan Bombed Abuja Oct 1st; Begged Me To Blame North,” Henry Okah Claims [RESCUED]
- Tenders President’s handwritten note as Exhibit!
- Says bombing was to create anti-north sentiment towards his electoral victory
- Says President pressed me to compel MEND to retract claim of responsibility
- Claims Jonathan planned to lie about a single term
- Full Text of the Affidavit
The embattled former leader of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) has started singing like a Canary in his detention cell. Okah who is currently being detained in a South African prison over his alleged role in the October 1, 2010 bombing made some allegations in an affidavit he submitted to a court on Wednesday. The affidavit was filed in his fresh application for bail.
The President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan and a number of his aides were prominently mentioned in the 145-paragraph affidavit. For instance, Okah alleged that he spoke to the President on behalf of Mrs. Diezani Alison Madueke before she was made the Minister of Petroleum Resources. Okah also alleged that his present predicament cannot be divorced from his refusal to get MEND to retract their claim of responsibility for the Independence Day bombing. Okah claimed the Government wanted to pin the occurrence on some specific northern elements. Excerpts:
IN THE SOUTH GAUTENG HIGH COURT, JOHANNESBURG
(REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA)
CASE NO: A570/10
In the matter between: –
OKAH, HENRY EMOMOTIMI Applicant
THE STATE Respondent
I, the undersiqned,
HENRY EMOMOTIMI OKAH do hereby make oath and state as follows: –
1. I am an adult male person, the Applicant herein, currently incarcerated at the Johannesburg Prison, since my arrest on the 2nd of October 2010.
2. The content of this affidavit falls within my own personal knowledge, except
where it is expressly stated otherwise, and are both true and correct”,
3. I am charged with certain offences in terms of the Protection of Constitutional Democracy against Terrorist and Related Activities Act, Act 33 of 2004 (lithe Terrorist Act”). I have further been advised and reconfirm that the offences referred to in the Terrorist Act are referred to in Schedule 6 of the Criminal Procedure Act, Act 51 of 1977 and that I am obliged as such to adduce evidence, having been afforded a reasonable opportunity to do so, that exceptional circumstances exist which in the interest of justice permit my release on bail.
INTRODUCTION: HISTORICAL CHRONOLOGY
4. I was arrested on the 2nd of October 2010 and appeared in Court 12 in the Regional Court, Johannesburg for the first time on the 4th of October 2010.
5. I applied for and was denied bail in a judgment by the learned Regional Court Magistrate H Louw on the 19thof November 2010.
6. ·1 appealed the judgment of the learned Regional Court Magistrate to the South Gauteng High Court, Johannesburg under appeal case number CA340/2010. My appeal was heard by His Lordship Hattingh AJ and dismissed on the in January 2011. A copy of the judgment of the High Court is annexed hereto as Annexure “HEO 1″.
7. An application was made on my behalf for leave to appeal, to the Supreme·
Court of Appeal of South Africa, which application was dismissed by the learned Hattingh AJ on the 11th of June 2011. I attach hereto a copy of the order dated the 1ih of June 2011 as Annexure “HEO 2″.
8. The proceedings of the hearing of the application for bail, in the Regional Court Johannesburg, as well as the transcripts of the record of the appeal before Hattingh AJ, will be made available to the above Honourable Court at the hearing of this application.
9. I have further been advised by my legal representatives that since appeared in the South Gauteng High Court, Johannesburg on the 31st of January 2012, the abovementioned Court is therefore seized with this application by virtue of the provisions of Section 60(1)(b) of the Criminal Procedure Act, 51 of 1977 and that the above Honourable Court should hear this application.
- Related: NewsRescue-SSS: AIT’s Raymond Dokpesi Exchanged Text Messages With Abuja Bombers – BBC
10. I have been advised by my legal representatives that should new facts arise, subsequent to the historical application and appeal referred to hereinabove, I am entitled to apply to the above Honourable Court to take any and all of the new facts into consideration together with the original application and consider whether I should be released on bail.
11. The trial is set down to commence in the South Gauteng High Court on 1 October 2012 and I am advised that the trial is projected both by the State and by my legal representatives on a conservative estimate to last at least 18 months.
12. I have been furnished with an indictment dated 23 August 2011 under the hand of Advocate AR Ackermann SC, confirming that the trial will be conducted in the South Gauteng High Court.
13. In anticipation of the upcoming trial, I have been furnished with the content of the police docket containing the statements and evidence procured by the investigating officer.
14. The information contained in the police docket was not made available to me or my previous legal representatives before the previous bail application and the bail appeal.
15. As I will demonstrate hereinunder, my allegation set out in my previous affidavits in support of my bail application before the learned Regional Court Magistrate wherein I dealt extensively with the weakness and defects in the State case is now apparent when a proper and detailed analysis and comparison is made and drawn between the averments made under oath by the· investigating officer during the previous bail application and the evidence, or the lack thereof, which is contained in the police docket.
16. My legal representative in the bail application presented oral argument to the learned Regional Court Magistrate and favoured him with heads of argument in support of his submissions that I should be released on bail. Thereafter, during the address by counsel for the State, the learned Regional Court Magistrate indicated to counsel on behalf of the State that there was no evidential material placed before the Court, directly linking me with the crimes allegedly committed in Nigeria, which were set out in the charge sheet. In this regard I beg leave to refer the Court to pp 301 to 303 of the record. I deem it prudent to quote some exchanges between the Court and counsel for the State at p 302:-
COURT: That is not evidence.
PROSECUTOR: I also have evidence that the accused had … (intervenes).
COURT: I am going to interrupt you there. There is no evidential material before the
Court. You cannot say mero motu that you have evidence. You cannot testify, that is not evidence before this Court, and I will not accept it as such. It is a mere statement from yourself If you have evidential material by means of a statement under oath, or evidence that was presented somehow, maybe an answer from the accused …(intervenes)
COURT: Presented to me, but you are arguing that a mere statement from the State’s
side is somehow elevated to evidence, that is not, it is certainly not. .. But if you are not going to give me evidential material that links the accused with the planting of this, I must accept his version, despite the fact that my impressions upon him in the witness box, which you can allude to … (intervenes)
COURT: That is my opinion at this stage.”
17. As a result of the aforegoing, the State’s legal representative requested that the matter stand down and thereafter applied to re-open the State’s case. (at pp 306 to 307). My legal representative opposed the application, but the Court ruled that the State be given an opportunity to re-open its case (record, pp 308 to 309).
18. The State then presented exhibit UN”, a further affidavit by the investigating officer, Lieutenant Colonel Zeeman, which affidavit was read into the record at pp 311 to 316 (exhibit UN”, pp 954 to 958).
19. In response to exhibit UN”, I filed an affidavit in terms of Section 60(11) of the Criminal Procedure Act, seeking certain information to be furnished to me to be able to adequately deal with exhibit UN”. In this regard I refer the Honourable Court to exhibit “P” (pp 959 to 966).
20. The learned Magistrate thereafter ordered the South African Police Service to make a mirror copy image of the hard drive of the computer seized from my residence and all cellular phone hard drives as well as memories and the affidavits underlying the application for the warrant of my arrest, the search and seizure order issued by the Magistrate, be disclosed. I refer to the Court Order at pp 359 to 360 of the record.
21. Despite the aforegoing, the State failed to comply with the aforesaid Court Order. My legal representative then furnished the Court with a second replying affidavit of myself in response to the State’s failure to have complied with the Court Order (see record, pp 364 to 388, exhibit “Q”, my second replying affidavit, pp 967 to 993). The learned Magistrate thereupon held an enquiry as to why the State failed to comply with his Order and heard the evidence of three witnesses, Zeeman, Mofamadi and Makusa (record pp 394 to 412).
22. The learned Magistrate then made a ruling finding that there was an unreasonable delay caused by the State and ordered the State that the relevant copies as ordered by him, be presented to my legal team. I refer to pp 422 to 423.
23. By virtue of the fact that I was at that stage detained for over a month, my legal adviser advised me to proceed with my bail application and presented argument that I be released on bail (see record, p 423, lines 10 to 16).
24. From a perusal of exhibit “N”, as well as the judgment of the learned Magistrate and the judgment of the High Court in dismissing my appeal, both Courts relied heavily on the contents of exhibit “N”. I have been advised that it is prudent to annex exhibit “N” hereto since it played a pivotal role in both Courts denying me bail. I attach exhibit “N” hereto as Annexure “HEO 3″.
25. I have now been furnished with a copy of the police docket which I have been advised by my legal representatives contains all the evidential material which the State intends to use in my trial. I have studied the police docket and state categorically that exhibit “N” is false and misleading with regard to various issues contained therein.
26. The State alleged in Exhibit ‘N’ that prior to the detonation of the two motor vehicles improvised explosive devices in Abuja, Nigeria on 1 October 2010, two vehicles namely a Honda and a Mazda 626 were purchased in Lagos, Nigeria, on the instruction of a person complicit in the crime.
27. The explosions took place under the supervision of one Chima Orlu a Nigerian national. It is alleged that Chima Orlu acted on my instructions. The State has not furnished any evidence to substantiate this allegation in the police docket.
28. It was further alleged by the State that Chima Orlu’s telephone records revealed that he had been in contact with me on numerous occasions leading up to 1 October 2010. The telephone records contained in the police docket do not in any way substantiate these allegations made by the State in exhibit “N”.
29. The State also alleged that Chima Orlu sent an SMS message to me at precisely 10h58:59 on 1 October 2010. The SMS was allegedly followed by another SMS from Chima Orlu at 13h13:01 and again at 13h29:59 the same day. It is suggested that the replying SMS’s were sent by me to Chima Orlu at the times given. The police docket does not contain evidence substantiating these allegations made by the State.
30. The State also alleged that on 1 October 2010 Chima Orlu made a total of
43 voice calls and had sent 27 SMS messages to co-perpetrators and co-conspirators.
The police docket does not contain any evidence substantiating these allegations made by the State.
31. The State further alleged that Ben Ebere, a Nigerian national who is also known as Ben Jessy or Justin Malcolm Umejesi assisted Chima Orlu in the detonation of the said explosions. Ebere had allegedly been in telephonic and SMS contact with me right up to 29 September 2010. The police docket does not contain evidence substantiating these allegations made by the State.
32. There were allegedly 1 126 calls from me to Ben Ebere during the period 7 August 2010 to 29 September 2010. The telephone records contained in the police docket do not in any way substantiate these allegations made by the State.
33. There were allegedly 59 SMS’s sent from me to Ben Ebere during the period 1 July 2010 to 28 September 2010. The telephone records contained in the police docket does not in any way substantiate these allegations made by the State.
34. Ben Ebere is a wanted person in Nigeria. I attach hereto a newspaper article as Annexure “HEO 4″.
35. Exhibit UN” stated that Ben Jessy was in Nigeria during the time of the bombing. There is no evidence contained in the police docket to substantiate these allegations.
36. A copy of a photo, the original of which will be made available by my legal
representatives at the hearing hereof, of Ben Jessy and President Jacob Zuma is attached hereto as Annexure “HEO 5″.
37. An e-mail was also allegedly forwarded to me on 1 October 2010 at 16:25 by two people arrested in Nigeria relating to the bombing which stated:- “Done, tell them to leave now.”
38. The police docket does not contain evidence substantiating these allegations made by the State.
39. I propose to deal with the allegations surrounding Chima Orlu in more detail hereunder.
40. The allegations contained above in respect of the alleged cell phone calls and SMS messages between me and Chima Orlu are not substantiated by my cell phone records contained in the police docket.
41. The e-mail from the perpetrators of the bombing of 1 October 2010 purported by the State to be in its possession, simply does not exist in the police docket, nor does it exist on the computers or cell phones seized in the search of my residence.
42. As stated hereinbefore, the learned Magistrate ordered that the State gave me access to a disc containing the relevant cellphone records pertaining to the cellphones allegedly confiscated during the search and seizure of my residence. The relevant disc contains only two records of cellphones that belong to my wife and/or children. I respectfully state that no incriminating evidence was retrieved from these records. I attach the said report pertaining thereto as “HEO _”.
43. I refer to Annexure “HEO 4″ above, the newspaper article which appeared in a Nigerian newspaper and in which the public relations official of the Nigerian Police Force is quoted as having made available photographs of the two suspected masterminds behind the bomb blasts. It is significant to note that no information regarding these individuals is provided other than their names and their photographs.
44. In Annexure “HEO 4″ Ben Jessy is depicted on the photograph on the right hand side and Chima Orlu on the left hand side.
45. I can now categorically state that the allegations contained in exhibit “N” in
particular are not substantiated by any independent evidence. I therefore respectfully state that the so-called evidential material relied on by the learned Regional Court Magistrate and the High Court does not exist. I therefore respectfully state that the State’s case against me is extremely weak and it is unlikely that the State will be successful in a criminal prosecution against me. I respectfully state that had the Regional Court and the High Court been appraised of the true facts pertaining to the so-called “evidence” referred to in exhibit “N”, both Courts in all probability would have granted me bail.
46. For the aforegoing reasons, I respectfully state that these factors constitute new facts, which were previously not presented to either the Regional Court Magistrate or to the High Court and these new facts and circumstances entitle me to be released on bail on such conditions and in such amount as the above Honourable Court may deem fit.
47. Although my trial has been set down for hearing in the above Honourable Court to commence on the 1st of October 2012, I respectfully state that it is extremely unlikely that this case will be finalised during the last term of 2012. A perusal of the police docket clearly indicates that in order for the State to prove the allegations contained in the charge sheet, the State will have to call close to 50 witnesses. The list of witnesses attached to the indictment contains’ almost in its entirety witnesses who are in Nigeria. I can only imagine that it will be a logistical nightmare for the State to secure the attendance of all these witnesses in South Africa, and that delays in this regard will be unavoidable. Should the matter go on trial, I intend calling in excess of 100 witnesses from Nigeria in defence of my case.
48. I am not certain as to whether the State will apply to the Trial Court that certain of the witnesses’ evidence be taken on commission. This in itself will result in the trial being protracted for a very lengthy period of time. Moreover, this trial will be extremely costly and I cannot envisage at this stage whether I will even be able to afford legal representation for such a lengthy period of time, let alone whether it would be viable for such a procedure to be followed.
49. I have been arrested on the 2nd of October 2010 and at the commencement of the trial, I would have been in custody for two years. I have been advised that this in itself is also another factor warranting my release on bail, as the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa provides that any person accused of having committed a criminal offence must be afforded the right to a speedy trial. I submit that these factors also constitute new facts which should be considered by the above Honourable Court.
50. In order not to prolix this application unnecessarily, I wish to refer to the judgment of the High Court on appeal to it in terms of Section 65 of the Criminal Procedure Act, 51 of 1977. With respect to the learned Judge, it is clear that he attached a lot of weight to the affidavit by the investigating officer, Colonel Zeeman (exhibit UN”)(see judgment on appeal, pp 6 to 8).
51. Although Section 60(11)(a) provides that I should satisfy the Court that exceptional circumstances exist which in the interest of justice permit my release, I respectfully state that the new facts and circumstances set out hereinbefore cumulatively constitute exceptional circumstances which warrant my release on bail on such conditions as the above Honourable Court may deem fit. Legal argument will be addressed to the above Honourable Court at the hearing of this application in respect of the aforegoing issues.
52. I deny the allegations contained in the indictment and will plead not guilty to the charges proffered against me by the State.
53. In the indictment it is alleged by the State that I visited Port Harcourt in Nigeria during February 2010 to carry out certain acts in Nigeria (indictment, paragraphs 9 to 17).
54. On the day of the bombing of 1 October 2010, I received a call from Mr Moses Jituboh, the Head of Personal Security to President Jonathan, who solicited my assistance and continued cooperation with President Goodluck Jonathan towards shifting blame for the bombings to the North of Nigeria.
55. The State attempts to substantiate this theory with contradictory statements from its witnesses and detainees held by the Nigerian Government.
56. One of its witnesses Mr Emmanuel Allison claims his two blackberry phones to which I sent incrirninatinq SMS’es were destroyed or lost.
57. His reason for destroying the phone, being threatening text messages he alleges to have received from “my boys.” It is absurd to destroy a cell phone on account of harassing or threatening text massage when the sim card can easily be replaced.
58. Mr Allison also claims to know nothing about the bombings of 1 October 2010 but his claim of ignorance is disputed by detainee Mr Obi Nwabueze who asserts that the State witness Mr Emmanuel Allison, in fact coordinated the bombing of 1 October 2010.
59. The purpose of my visit to Nigeria between February and March 2010 was to market a South African manufactured brick making machine to the Niger Delta Development Corporation (“NDDC”) and the Ministry of Niger Delta. This product, I believe could drastically reduce building cost in Niger Delta.
A copy of the relevant documents substantiating the abovementioned is attached hereto marked Annexure “HEO 6″.
60. In order to give the above Honourable Court certain background facts, I wish to allude to the following.
61. The Niger Delta where I come from, is an impoverished part of Nigeria that accounts for close to Four Billion Rand of the daily revenue of the Nigeria Government, yet it can best be described as one big “squatter camp” due to it being without electricity, running water, proper roads, schools, hospitals, sewerage etc.
62. Introducing this brick making machine was my contribution towards alleviating the suffering of the people of the Niger Delta.
63. During my visit to Nigeria, I attended a meeting with the Minister for the Niger Delta, Mr Godsday Orubebe who promised to examine my proposal when the Government of President Goodluck Jonathan was firmly rooted.
64. Mr Goodluck Jonathan was then the acting president of Nigeria.
65. In Port Harcourt, I was schedule to meet with the Managing Director of the NDDC, Mr Chibuzor Ugwoha. This meeting was arranged by Messrs Rogers Nda and Larry Ogbomo. A copy of an affidavit by Larry Ogbomo confirming same is attached hereto marked Annexure “HEO 7″.
66. I stayed at the Novotel hotel where I usually stayed whilst visiting Port Harcourt.
67. During my stay at the Novotel hotel, I was visited by numerous people as is the usual with me and most of these visitors were seeking some form of assistance from me.
68. One such person was Mr Raphael Damfebo who had during 2009 been introduced to me by Mr Zion Amada whom I had known for many years. Mr Damfebo claimed to be unemployed and caring for a terminally ill fiancée. Mr Damfebo also made mention about previously working for a former militia commander from the Niger Delta who had abandoned him in the pursuit of securing lucrative contracts from the Nigerian Government.
69. I have since 2009 assisted Mr Damfebo financially as far as it was possible, believing him to be jobless and caring for a terminally ill fiancée.
70. Upon my arrival in Port Harcourt, I was informed by Mr Larry Ogbomon that Mr Ugwoha was unavailable for our meeting.
71. I waited a few days and decided to leave Port Harcourt when Mr Ugwoha had still not returned and Mr Ogbomon and Mr Nda refused to assume responsibility for the cost of my stay at the Novotel hotel. I departed Port Harcourt for Lagos where I spent a few days.
72. The State attempts, in the police docket, to give the impression that my relationship with President Goodluck Jonathan is very bad, but the contrary is true, my relationship with President Goodluck Jonathan is very good and I have known President Goodluck Jonathan since about 1999 from when he was Deputy Governor of the Bayelsa State.
73. Since December 2009 when he sought my support towards his campaign for presidency of Nigeria, we had kept in constant touch.
74. President Goodluck Jonathan used his closest advisor Mr Oronto Douglas or the Minister for Niger Delta Mr Godsday Orubebe to keep in touch with me.
75. Mr Oronto Douglas’ numbers are known to me being +2348055077077 and +2348033003890 while Mr Godsday Orubebe used the numbers +2348037178432 and +2348055296693.
76. During March 2010, the then acting President Goodluck Jonathan informed me that he was sending Mr Oronto Douglas to the Republic of South Africa to discuss certain issues with me. I attach hereto marked Annexure “HEO 8″ a handwritten note he wrote whilst visiting Republic of South Africa.
77. Mr Oronto Douglas arrived on 31 March 2010 and departed 1 April 2010.
78. During my meeting with Mr Douglas, he informed me that the Northern region of Nigeria was attempting to prevent President Goodluck Jonathan from becoming the president of Nigeria and required my assistance.
79. During the evening of 4 April 2010, I received a call from Mr Douglas who informed me that a certain Ms Diezani Allison-Madueke desperately required speaking to me and requested him for my phone number.
80. Mr Douglas explained to me that she required my assistance in persuading President Goodluck Jonathan to appoint her as Minister for Petroleum.
81. At Mr Oronto Douglas’ prompting, I reluctantly accepted.
82. During the evening of 4 April 2012 and the morning of 5 April 2010, I received approximately twenty calls from Ms Madueke explaining that she was competing for the post of Minister of Petroleum with the now Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr Odien Ajumogobia and required my assistance to tip the scales in her favour.
83. Ms Madueke requested that I put in a good word for her with President Goodluck Jonathan whom she said had asked to speak to me.
84. At the time of her first call, President Goodluck Jonathan was busy and she continuously called or sent text messages to update me on the Mr Jonathan’s availability.
85. During the calls he used two different telephone numbers.
86. One of these numbers was +2347034039944, which she informed me was her number and another, which I did not save, which she had said belonged to her personal assistant.
87. I finally spoke to President Goodluck Jonathan during the early hours of 5 April 2010.
88. During the course of our telephone conversation, he informed me that he was sending Mr Godsday Orubebe the Minister of Niger Delta to get my response to the meeting with Mr Oronto Douglas and to brief me on other matters.
89. The last call I received from Ms Madueke was at 6:41 :35 on 4 April 2010 during which she thanked me for my contribution in influencing her appointment as Minister of Petroleum.
90. Tension between the Muslim North and Christian South in Nigeria has been running high and I was/am conscious of inflaming an already volatile situation still apparent in Nigeria.
91. Mr Godsday Orubebe informed me that President Goodluck Jonathan was disturbed about rumours of me routing for General Babangida from the North and wanted me to place an advert in the Nigerian newspapers in support of him.
92. Mr Orubebe further said that President Goodluck Jonathan was upset with General Babangida for contesting the election and was going to stop him, one way or another.
93. They intended to use the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to arrest General Babangida on charges relating to an alleged embezzlement of public funds during his tenure in office if all attempts to discourage him from participating in the elections failed.
94. Mr Orubebe also explained to me that the North appeared to have lost respect for former militia leaders from the Niger Delta that appeared as illiterate thugs going around ministries in Abuja and making threats in the bid to secure government contracts. He went on to suggest that since I still had credibility and commanded the respect of most fighters, I should appear publicly as the leader of these former fighters.
95. He assured me in this meeting that President Goodluck Jonathan was determined to ensure that political power never returned to the North which Mr Orubebe described as parasites.
96. To achieve this, President Goodluck Jonathan would pretend to do only one term in office and once entrenched, he would insist on a second term.
97. Mr Orubebe in that meeting said the North had their chance and they put forward a very ill and ailing candidate for President.
98. Before his departure, the Minister of Niger Delta asked one of his aides, Mr Rodney Ambaowei to attend a demonstration of the brick machine I had previously tried to market to his ministry. This is confirmed in the documents attached above marked Annexure “HEO 9″
99. Mr Ambaowei and I attended the demonstration at the premises of the company in North Riding, Johannesburg.
100. Approximately one month after Mr Godsday Orubebe’s departure from the Republic of South Africa, I received a call from him informing me they (President Goodluck Jonathan and Mr Orubebe) were sending someone to discuss confidential issues with me.
101. The person delegated was Mr Abraham Gillow and aide to Mr Godsday Orubebe.
102. It is usual for the Nigerian Government to send representative to discuss issues capable of causing them embarrassment, if exposes and such issues are never discussed over the telephone.
103. On his arrival, Mr Gillow informed me that the Nigerian Government wanted me to supply weapons to the Nigerian Military and I replied that I was not interested.
104. He then asked if I knew where weapons could be purchased in the Republic of South Africa.
105. He explained to me that the Nigerian Government had obtained quotes from
China and former Eastern Block Countries and wished to compare these quotes with the Republic of South Africa.
106. I then proceeded in his presence to call Dave Sheer Firearms.
107. The telephone call was placed on speaker for his benefit and he heard from a representative of Dave Sheer Firearms, the conditions attached to exporting weapons out of the Republic of South Africa.
108. In hindsight, I believe that Mr Gillow was sent on a mission by President Goodluck Jonathan to verify rumours making the round in Nigeria that I was importing weapons to Nigeria.
109. President Jonathan, I believe was at this point in time plotting my arrest to prevent my participation in the Nigerian elections.
110. I was in constant touch with President Goodluck Jonathan through his Ministers and Advisors until my arrest on 2 October 2010 and at all this time wrongly believing my relationship with President Goodluck Jonathan IS good.
111. For instance I spoke at length with Mr Oronto Douglas on 29 and 30 September 2010.
112. Mr Douglas’ telephone number during these calls was +2348055077077.
113. It has come to my knowledge that Mr Bassey Umoren and others confirmed by the State as its witnesses have been detained for more than a year without access to lawyers. Their freedom has been tied to them giving false testimony against me at any cost during my trial.
114. The police docket provides no evidence of the construction of compartments in the motor vehicles utilised in the bombings of 14 March 2010 and 1 October 2010 nor are there any fingerprint or any other evidence from the recovered motor vehicles to link anyone. I attach hereto marked Annexures “HEO 9″ and “HEO 10″ an e-mail from Mr Bassey Umoren dated 31 March 2010 requesting me for assistance in setting up a welding business and an e-mail dated 8 April 2012 thanking me for helping him.
115. A study of the police docket further reveals the following: The evidence supplied by the State in the police docket in the form of photographs of alleged victims of the bombings of 1 October 2010 and 14 March 2010 provides proof of tampering with a possible crime scene by the Nigerian Authorities.
116. In order to influence the proceedings against me in South Africa, the Nigerian Government presented staged photographs showing alleged victims being in various stages of being undressed.
117. The bodies in the photographs are intact showing no signs of trauma associated with a bombing and they appear in underwear in some cases.
118. With reference to the photographs of alleged victims of the bombing of 1 October 2010 provided by the State in the police docket, great effort has been made to conceal the identities of the corpses positioned by the Nigerian Government. The reason for this being is that these individuals are not victims of any bombing but corpses taken from a local mortuary for a photo shoot.
119. The victims have been placed facing downwards to render them unrecognizable. Those surrounded by the remnants of burnt out motor vehicles are spotless with no sign of soot or burns even as the tarred road beneath these bodies appears to be damaged by fire.
120. The Nigerian government claimed in a statement issued by the spokesperson for its State Security Services (SSS) that 6 motor vehicles were purchased for use in the bombings. The State provided 2 documents which the State claims to be purchase receipts for the motor vehicles used in the bombings of 1 October 2010. No further receipts of any were provided.
121. The purchase receipts provided are clearly printed from the same computer by two different individuals approximately 35 kilometres apart.
122. There are no purchasers’ signatures on the purchase receipts and a deliberate misspelling of my brother’s surname in other to present the impression that both motor vehicles were purchased by him.
123. In addition, both documents are dated 17 September 2010 but on one, the seller also dates it 17 October 2010 which is most likely the month in which the documents were generated.
124. The State has as at dated hereof, not provided any photographs of the autopsies of alleged victims of the bombings.
125. On examination of the pathology documentation relating to an alleged victim of 1 October 2010 reveals inter alia the following: –
125.1. Mr Bala is reported to have passed away on 1 October 2010, at the Kings Care Hospital Zn (zone) 4 Abuja. Evidence provided by the State indicates that Mr Bala’s corpse was transferred to the Maitama General Hospital Mortuary on the same day of his death, 1 October 2010.
125.2. This corpse was escorted to the Maitama General Hospital by police Corporal Akor Emmanuel, though it is not indicated where this police corporal found this corpse. An order for post mortem examination as is required by Nigerian law in cases of unnatural death, was served on the C.M.D (Chief Medical Director) of the Maitama General Hospital Abuja on 6 October 2010, and the post mortem examination from evidence provided by the State indicates to have been conducted on 6 October 2010 at the Maitama General Hospital as per the order for post mortem examination.
125.3. The post mortem examination of Mr Verty Bala from the report of this examination was witnessed by a C.S.P. (Chief Superintendent of Police) whose identity is not indicated.
125.4. On conclusion of the post mortem examination of Mr Verty Bala, a warrant to bury was issued on the same day of the autopsy, 6 October 2010. A warrant to bury indicates the conclusion of post mortem examinations and all investigation requiring the presence of the corpse.
125.5. Contradicting the evidence supplied by the State on Mr Verty Bala, is the Report of Medical Practitioner attached to Mr Bala’s file, which was stamped by a hospital more than 50 kilometres away from the Maitama General Hospital where Mr Verty Bala’s corpse is reported to have been kept since 1 October 2010.
125.6. Mr Verty Bala’s Report of Medical Practitioner was stamped and signed by a medical practitioner at the National Hospital, Abuja, 2 days after Mr Bala’s reported post mortem examination at the Maitama General Hospital, and possibly released the corpse to the family for burial as per warrant to bury.
125.7. The medical practitioner at the National Hospital, Abuja who had access to Mr Verty Bala’s corpse, describes the corpse 8 days after the death and 2 days after a post mortem examination as fresh and neatly dressed with only a 1 mm puncture wound. This, contradicting a police report which recorded cuts on the body of Mr Bala on 1
125.8. The Maitama General Hospital and the National Hospital, Abuja are two entirely different, unaffiliated hospitals approximately 50 kilometres apart. A doctor in one hospital cannot attend to patients or victims of another hospital. Such discrepancies apply to all forensic pathology reports provided by the State for the bombings of 15 March 2010 and 1 October 2010.
126. The police docket states the following in respect of the alleged victims of the
1 October 2010 bombing:-
126.1. All 7 alleged victims were escorted by the same policeman Corporal Akor Emmanuel to three different hospitals namely the National Hospital Abuja, Maitama General Hospital and the Asokoro General Hospital, all of them being remarkable distances apart.
126.2. The same Corporal Akor Emmanuel is again indicated to have escorted the corpse of Mr Verty Bala reported not to have died on the scene but at the Kings Care Hospital Zone 4, Abuja.
126.3. The same medical practitioner confirmed with a stamp from the National Hospital Abuja to have examined the bodies from 3 different hospitals without being in possession of an authorisation to do so.
126.4. This medical practitioner claimed to have conducted investigations and determined the cause of death of all victims, days after the post mortem examinations and the issuing of the warrants to bury.
126.5. The post mortem reports are not signed by the pathologists who conducted the autopsy, most probably an indication that the pathologists at the Maitama General Hospital, Asokoro General Hospital and the National Hospital Abuja refused to be co-opted. These post mortem examinations may in fact never have taken
126.6. In all 7 post mortem examinations of alleged victims of the 1 October 2010 bombing, the same C.S.P. (Chief Superintendent of Police) is a witness even though some autopsies were indicated to have been conducted the same day in three different hospitals approximately 60 kilometres apart.
126.7. Autopsies in Nigerian Government hospitals are conducted within normal working hours between 9 am and 5 pm.
126.8. No death certificates were issued for any of the alleged victims of 1 October 2010 in spite of the fact that Nigerian law forbids the burial or issuing of a warrant to bury, without possession of a death certificate.
126.9. There is no evidence that the crime scene was secured for investigators which the police docket indicates only arrived at the crime scene 2 days after the bombing of 1 October 2010.
126.10. The only available explanation for the corpses and evidence photographed at the scene of bombing is that the bodies were brought to the scene 2 days later when the investigators arrived on the scene.
126.11. The corpses were turned face down and in different positions with an attempt to conceal their identities.
126.12. The poor picture quality is deliberate and renders it impossible to identify any of the victims.
126.13. With regards to the alleged victim of the 15 March 2010 bombing the death certificate was issued 8 months after the alleged death and burial.
126.14. The Nigerian Coroner’s Act forbids burial in the case of unnatural deaths without an autopsy, death certificate and warrant to bury.
127. The issuing of Mr Igbe’s death certificate 8 months after his burial is preposterous. The death certificate of Mr Igbe an alleged victim of the bombing of 15 March, 2010, indicates that he was last seen alive by a witness on the day the death certificate was issued 8 months after his death.
128. The indictment alleges in the summary of substantial facts that I was a
leader of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (“MEND”). The State also levelled certain allegations against MEND. See Summary of Substantial Facts, paras 2 to 9 – pp 21 to 22 of the indictment.
Okah accuses President Jonathan of Two Bombings; First The 14th March 2010 Bombing then Oct 1st Independence Day Bombing
129. An insight into the workings of MEND will assist in providing a better understanding of the bombings of 1 October 2010 and the involvement of President Goodluck Jonathan’s Government in these bombings. MEND is an amalgam of independent groups in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria, which groups struggled to get their land back. This has been going on for approximately 40 years.
130. It is my belief that President Goodluck Jonathan’s Government working with a faction of MEND planned and execute the bombings of 14 March 2010 and 1 October 2010.
- See: NewsRescue-President Goodluck Jonathan A Patron Of MEND Terror Group – STRATFOR Intelligence Report
131. The purpose of the 14 March 2010 bombing in my opinion was to create an atmosphere of insecurity in Niger Delta where President Goodluck Jonathan at that time, was fighting to oust the governor Mr Emmanuel Uduaghan whom President Goodluck Jonathan intended to replace with his Minister for Niger Delta, Mr Godsday Orubebe.
132. The bombing on 1 October 2010 was a platform for the elimination of political opposition from the North in the form of General Ibrahim Babangida. The bombings of 1 October 2010 was also intended by the President Goodluck Jonathan Government to create anti North sentiments nationwide in order to galvanize support from other sections of Nigeria against other Northern candidates in the Presidential elections.
133. Under the arrangement, MEND I believe was not to claim responsibility for the bombings which the Nigerian government hoped to pin on General Babangida and other Northern elements.
134. The claim of responsibility by the central group for a bombing possibly carried out by the a faction of MEND punctured the plans of President Goodluck Jonathan to round up his opposition and hold them in custody until after the elections.
135. After the bombings of 1 October 2010, the Government of President Goodluck Jonathan solicited my cooperation in getting the central group to retract their claim of responsibility. In this regard, I was contacted by amongst others, Mr Moses Jituboh, a senior police officer and Head of Personal Security for the Nigerian president and Mr Tony Uranta, a close ally of President Goodluck Jonathan who caters for “dirty tasks”.
136. Mr Jituboh is always with the President and would not dare attempt to facilitate such an arrangement, without authorization from the President.
137. Mr Jituboh called me from his cell with number +234807703333 at 7:20:42 pm on 1 October 2010. In anticipation of my success in extracting a retraction, the Nigerian Government began the process of rounding up opposition politicians. Amongst those arrested was the Campaign manager of General Babangida, Dr Raymond Dokpesi.
138. My refusal to cooperate in this scheme resulted in President Goodluck Jonathan placing a call to President Jacob Zuma during the evening of 1 October 2010, requesting for President Zuma’s personal assistance in securing my arrest. My noncooperation was interpreted by President Goodluck Jonathan as support for the Northern politicians. The South African Government’s direct interference was responsible for securing search and arrest warrants against me.
139. Mr Jituboh’s post bombing call to me was widely publicised in the Nigerian media. If he made these call without the approval of the Nigerian President to someone whom the Nigerian Government labels a terrorist, Mr Jituboh would not only have lost his job but would have immediately been arrested.
140. Subsequent to Mr Jituboh’s call, I ignored 4 calls from the Minister for the Niger Delta, Mr Orubebe and 2 calls from an aide to the Minister, Mr Abraham Gillow. I assumed they were also calling to solicit my assistance in diverting blame for the bombings of 1 October 2010.
141. During the morning of 2 October 2010, I received two SMS’es from Mr Tony
Uranta. As earlier stated, Mr Uranata is acknowledged by Nigerians to be responsible for “dirty tasks” President Goodluck Jonathan would not wish to be traced to him.
142. The SMS’es were sent from Mr Uranta’s number +2348075407801.
143. The first of the two SMS’es sent by Mr Uranta at 10h23:05am stated; – “Ask J.G to withdraw statement.” (J.G being Jomo Gbomo the spokesperson for MEND).
144. The final SMS sent at 10h28:32 am states; – “The government will blame on
145. When confronted by the Nigerian media about these claims, Mr Uranta’s defence was that his phone was stolen on the day in question and the thief must have sent me the SMS’es.
146. President Jonathan’s earlier exoneration of MEND and me in the bombings of 1 October 2010 was done with the belief that MEND would retract its statement paving the way for President Jonathan’s planned persecution of political opposition. I attached hereto marked Annexure “HEO 11″ several press articles published on the internet in this regard.
147. President Jonathan’s only concern after the bombings of 1 October 2010 was my unwillingness to assist them in directing blame for the bombings at opposition candidates from the North of Nigeria.
148. The embarrassment caused to Mr Goodluck Jonathan by the continued insistence in its claim of responsibility by MEND provoked President Jonathan’s relentless pursuit and persecution of me with the assistance of the South African Government.
149. The State has made a desperate attempt to construct its fictional case against me based on its vague knowledge of my itinerary whilst in Nigeria, my relationship with President Goodluck Jonathan and other members of the Nigerian Government.
150. There are daily attacks against oil installations and workers in the Niger Delta which the Nigerian Government with the assistance of the oil companies cover-up. The cover-up is necessary to stabilise global oil prices and increase investor confidence in Nigeria. Oil companies are unable to hide such attacks only when forced to declare force majeure. Small attacks are declared to be industrial accident and abductions by militia groups raising funds for logistics are termed to be random and rare acts of piracy. I attached hereto marked Annexure “HEO 12″ press articles published on the internet substantiating same.
151. It is now clear that the State possesses no such evidence and is now forced to rely entirely on untrustworthy statements.
152. The State was very reluctant to bring forward these untrustworthy statements at my previous bail hearing.
153. Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and other Non Government Organisations have clearly documented the ruthlessness, cruelty and mercilessness of the Nigerian Security Services in the bid to extract confessions. A copy of their report will be made available to the above Honourable Court and the hearing of this matter, if requested, and is not attached hereto in order not to unnecessary attach to many supporting documents to my affidavit
154. I attach hereto and statement by Obi Nwabueze marked Annexure “HEO 13″ in which it is stated that he has been interrogated by the SSS in respect of this matter and has been offered freedom and money in exchange for false testimony against me.
155. I believe that they are denied access to lawyers sometimes for months until the interrogators are satisfied with their statement. I myself was a victim of this process while in custody of the State Security Services of Nigeria during 2008.
156. The State’s analysis of items allegedly confiscated in a questionable search of my home had no connection with the items recovered from the scene of the bombings or suspects in Nigeria.
157. In addition no links have been established between me and the cell phones allegedly recovered by the Nigerian investigators from the scene of the bombings of 1 October 2010.
158. Mr Timi Alaibe is a very fraudulent politician in Nigeria known for amassing great wealth through the theft of public funds. He has been a civil servant all his life but is worth hundreds of millions of dollars. He based his claims of my involvement on a gut feeling and was trying to curry favour with President Goodluck Jonathan ahead of the governorship elections in the Bayelsa State.
159. Mr Frances Osuwo (also spelled Osuvwo) through his lawyer complained that he was forced to sign a statement prepared by Mr Raphael Damfebo and the SSS. Mr Osuwo is completely illiterate and disputes everything contained in the statement he signed which was later explained to him by his lawyer.
160. Mr Francis Osuwo was denied access to a lawyer until he signed the statement required by the Nigerian interrogators.
161. There has been reports in the Media that Mr Osuwo has since passed away whilst in custody and I attach hereto marked Annexure “HEO 14″ proof thereof.
162. In my case, the Nigerian Government attempted to obtain confessions from one of its informants in South Africa Mr Justin Malcolm Umejesi (aka Ben Jessy) whom they had declared wanted under the name Ben Ebere.
163. Mr Justin Malcolm Umejesi (aka Ben Jessy) is well known to the Nigerian High Commission in Johannesburg and has survived by feeding his handler Mr Ado at the High Commission with false information for several years.
164. The High Commission only found out during my previous bail hearing that Mr Justin Umejesi has had no contact with me since early 2007.
165. The Nigerian Government had intended to obtain a confession statement from Mr Umejesi who was to have admitted to seeing me in possession of items he now believed to be used in the making of bombs.
166. The revelation at my previous bail hearing that Mr Umejesi had been scamming the High Commission for years and the High Commission’s later discovery of a photograph that Mr Umejesi had taken with the South African President Mr Jacob Zuma making the rounds within the Nigerian community and have rendered Mr Umejesi useless to the Nigerian Government.
167. Contradiction in the statements of the State’s witnesses and detainees in Nigeria comes from the Nigerian State Security Services and its ballistics and/or explosives experts.
168. The spokesperson for the State Security Services of Nigeria, Ms Marylyn
Ogar, in a statement to the media, a copy of which is attached hereto marked Annexure “HEO 15″ and following question and answer session with the Nigerian media, made the following assertions: –
168.1. Six motor vehicles were purchased by the alleged perpetrators of the 1 October 2010 bombing for use in the bombing which is contrary to the statement obtained from one of the detainees in Nigeria who states that four motor vehicles were purchased for this. The State has supplied 2 purchase receipts in support of the purchase for 2 of the alleged 6 motor vehicles.
168.2. Ms Marilyn Ogar of the SSS further confirms that her department foiled a bombing by MEND using two of the six motor vehicles.
168.3. This bombing according to Ms Marilyn Ogar was planned for 29 September 2010, the SSS claimed to be in possession of the car bombs.
168.4. None of the statements presented by the State supports this claim of such possession by the SSS.
169. The press release by the SSS highlights measures taken to counter the threat posed by the warnings of MEND of its intention to detonate the car bombs at the independence anniversary celebration of 1 October 2010.
170. Of great importance to the SSS was the use of cell phone jammers which the SSS claims was credited for preventing the detonation of these bombs closer to Eagle Square where the celebrations were held.
171. The SSS without a doubt confirms that the bombs were detonated by the use of cellular telephones.
172. There is no mention in any of the statements provided by the State witnesses of the use of cellular phones in the detonation of the bombs.
173. The State’s witnesses claim rather that it was timers that were used.
174. In a report submitted to the Court and produced by the State at my earlier bail application, the Nigerian bomb experts reported to have recovered fragments of two cellular phones at the scene of the bombings of 1 October 2010.
175. These phones were linked to the bombings by the unique alterations peculiar to its use for detonating bombs.
176. Such alterations include multi core cables attached to both phones.
177. The Nigerian bomb expert confirms an earlier claim made by Ms Marilyn Ogar of the State Security Services that cell phones were indeed used in detonating the bombs.
178. No timers or fragments of such were recovered at the bomb scene or present in the states docket.
179. Contradicting the findings of the Nigerian experts are the statements of State witnesses and Nigerian detainees who refer to a timer and there is no mention of the use of cell phones.
180. The statement of Warrant Officer L.A Smith of the Forensic Science Laboratory of the S.A.P.S, infers in paragraph 4 that the Nigerian analysis of the scene of the bombings of 1 October 2010, yielded evidence pointing to the use of nitro-glycerine based explosive used in the twin bombings.
181. This evidence is at odds with the statements of its witnesses, the Nigerian detainees and claims of the State that dynamite was used in the bombings.
182. Dynamite available in Nigeria is originally imported for commercial use in solid mineral mining and oil exploration.
183. The use of nitro-glycerine in commercial explosive such as dynamite has been discontinued for decades due to the unstable nature of nitro-glycerine.
184. Used in dynamite decades ago, nitro-glycerine was known to “weep” out of the mixture and cause explosions and death just by transporting this deadly compound.
185. Modern day dynamite has its active agent, ammonium nitrate and not nitroglycerine.
186. Upon the recent arrest in Nigeria of Mr Segun Ilorri, Mr Nonso Nwosu (A banker) and Mr Chima Orlu, the spokesperson for the State Security Services of Nigeria, Ms Marilyn Ogar described the contributions of the below mentioned individuals in the bombings of 15 March 2010 and 1 October 2010 as follows: –
186.1. Arms trafficker who supplied weapons used in the bombing of 1 October 2010. Mr Ilori was also alleged to have supplied other components of the bombs of 1 October 2010. The components were never named. The allegations against Mr Ilori are outrageous as there has never been any mention of firearms in either bombing of 15 March or 1 October 2010.
186.2. There is no mention in any of the witness statements of any activity relating to any bombing which Mr IIori was engaged in.
186.3. The State desires to tie Mr IIori to both bombings with the hope that an innocent SMS sent to him by me during February 2010, be construed as part of a conspiracy to commit a horrendous crime.
186.4. This SMS which sought Mr IIori’s assistance in paying monies to certain accounts was provided to the Nigerian authorities by the SAPS.
186.5. The monies disbursed by Mr IIori were to the accounts of individuals who had requested financial assistance.
186.6. One such individual, Mrs. Beatrice Inaku is a widow who I have supported since the death of her husband.
186.7. Her child resides in England and sent an email to me during or about this time expressing her gratitude for my support.
186.8. I attached hereto marked Annexure “HEO 16″ e-mails substantiating the abovementioned.
MR CHIMA ORLU
186.9. Is alleged to have built the bombs of 1 October 2010 and transported same to Abuja.
186.10. This claim contradicts previous statements by State witnesses Mr Emmanuel Allison and detainee Mr Obi Nwabueze and the SSS who were all in agreement that Mr Obi Nwabueze transported both motor vehicles to Abuja.
MR NONSO NWOSU
186.11. He is alleged to have coordinated the movement of funds utilised in the bombings of 15 March 2010 and 1 October 2010.
186.12. This allegation against Mr Nwosu was based on a SMS as this claim is at odds with the earlier report made by the SSS and investigating officer in Nigeria, in which Mr Abdul Abubakar named my brother Charles Okah as the financier of the bombings of 1 October 2010.
187. A list of people that purportedly died as a result of the bombing, did not include one Tahir Hassan Zakari Biu, copies of the contact details of the victims of the October bomb blast and the High Court of South Africa Indictment dated 23 August 2011.
188. It was reported in the media that Tahir’s Hassan Zakari Biu family was compensated by the Nigerian government in a widely publicised manner, for his death as a result of the bombing.
189. I attached hereto as Annexure “HEO 17″ an article by the Daily Champion dated 3 February 2011 and an article by Sahara reporters dated 26 December 2011 and marked “HEO 18″ confirming same.
190. I repeat what I have already stated in my original bail application, namely that: –
190.1. There was no likelihood that my release on bail will endanger the public safety or that of any particular individual;
190.2. I have no history of violent behaviour and do not have any disposition to commit offences referred to in Schedule 1 of the Criminal Procedure Act whilst released on bail. I hold no grudge against anyone either;
190.3. I submitted that there is no likelihood that I will attempt to evade my trial;
190.4. I submitted that this is evident from my conduct since the inception of the investigation;
190.5. I have not supplied any false information nor have I supplied any false information for purpose of this application;
190.6. I undertake to attend court faithful on each and every occasion to which the case might be postponed, I have no intention to live the life of a fugitive.
191. The State replied on the abovementioned as follows: –
191.1. The State said that there was a likelihood that if I will be released on bail I will attempt to evade the trial;
191.2. The State stated that I am extremely wealthy and well connected. Thus I am in the financial position to disappear;
191.3. The State stated that in my own handwriting I attested to previously having attempted and, or having bribed officials;
191.4. I previously attempted to evade justice in Nigeria and was later arrested in Angola and deported back to Nigeria;
191.5. Indicative in my diary I can rely on the systems of valuable and influential sources and aids;
191.6. The State stated that the local investigation into the current charges preferred against me is largely reliant on assistance from the Nigerian authorities. As such, a request for mutual and legal assistance will be submitted to the Nigerian authorities;
191.7. The State stated that in all likelihood I will attempt or influence or intimidate witnesses or would conceal or destroy evidence.
192. Since the investigation and having received copies of the police docket I have been aware of all the witnesses against me and I have and will not in any way intimidate or influence such witnesses.
193. I further refer the above Honourable Court to paragraphs 7 to 11 of my founding affidavit on pp 582 to 590 of the record which sets out my personal particulars and background and pray that the above Honourable Court take same in consideration in considering this bail application.
194. I humbly pray that the above Honourable Court grant my bail application on new facts.
THUS SIGNED AND SWORN TO AT ON THIS DAY OF 2012, THE DEPONENT HAVING ACKNOWLEDGED THAT HE/SHE KNOWS AND UNDERSTANDS THE CONTENTS OF THIS AFFIDAVIT, THAT IT IS BOTH TRUE AND CORRECT TO THE BEST OF HIS/HER KNOWLEDGE AND BELIEF, THAT HE/SHE HAS NO OBJECTION TO TAKING THE PRESCRIBED OATH AND THAT THE PRESCRIBED OATH WILL BE BINDING ON HIS/HER CONSCIENCE.