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$2.1bn Arms: Festus Keyamo Explains Why Jonathan Might Not Be Prosecuted

Human rights lawyer, Festus Keyamo in an interview with Tobi Aworinde has said even though former president Jonathan needs to be questioned and investigated in the ongoing investigations over a $2.1bn arms procurement scam, he might eventually not be invited. Here’s the question the human right lawyer was asked;
Some have called for former President Goodluck Jonathan to be investigated and prosecuted for his alleged role in the scandal. What do you think?
The issue of investigating and prosecuting Jonathan is a complex one; it is not a straightforward issue. On the face of it, since all of these people who are indicted, one way or the other, were working directly with the then President Jonathan, and they all took instructions from Jonathan, legally speaking, or like we say, ordinarily, he should be invited, questioned and, if possible, prosecuted. But it is not as straightforward as that. Continue...

The reason why I say it is not straightforward is that in Jonathan’s case, there appears to be some kind of international understanding that he should not be ridiculed. The reason being that most African leaders in the past — I say ‘most’ because not all of them; some of them have successfully handed over in the past when they lost election. But most of them have developed the habit of clinging on to power even when they lose elections. Most African leaders manipulate the electoral process to suit themselves. They do this not only because of the peculiar reasons; they do this because of the fear of life after power.
Therefore, the world and Africa have always encouraged presidents who have lost elections to hand over peacefully. And in return, there is some kind of behind-the-scene international understanding that such African leaders should be given their pride of place in history, so that it encourages others to toe the same line with honour when they lose elections. In Jonathan’s case, therefore, any attempt to humiliate him publicly will discourage other African leaders who lose elections to hand over because they will easily refer to his case. And this may lead their nations to unnecessary civil strike or war.
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