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Published On: Wed, Feb 1st, 2017

Ibori Indicates Interest of Political Comeback in Nigerian Politics

Chief James Ibori

Chief James Ibori

LAGOS FEBRUARY 1ST (URHOBOTODAY)-Chief James Ibori, former Delta State governor, who on Tuesday won another victory at a London court, has signaled a possible political comeback in the country.
“What happens in African politics – you are in it until you die,” Ibori told Reuters in London.
“I am a politician; I will always be a politician. I play the politics in my party and in my country for the good of my people,” he said after a court hearing on Tuesday.

Asked if he would run for office again, Chief Ibori said he was barred from doing so for 10 years because of his conviction, but that he intended to appeal to have that conviction overturned.
The appeal would center on an allegation made by one of Ibori’s former associates that a British police officer had taken bribes in return for inside information on the case before Ibori’s conviction, and that prosecutors had covered it up.
British police say the allegation was investigated, resulting in no arrests or charges.
The state prosecution service says material supporting the allegation exists and it initially failed to disclose that to Ibori’s defence team.
A statement by Tony Eluemunor, Ibori’s Media Assistant, said the British government had attempted to withdraw the case from Justice Garnham Court 5 to either the Queen’s Bench Division or the Crown Court. It said Ibori’s lawyers had argued that the Crown was trying to delay the suit and pushed for the court to rule that government was abusing its powers by seeking to detain Ibori any further on the premise that his assets confiscation case remained undecided. He asked the judge to award compensation to Ibori for “unlawful detention.” The judge then turned down the bid by the Crown to transfer the case to Crown Court or Queens Bench Division.
According to the statement, “This time the case before the court on Tuesday was to determine the amount of money Britain will pay Ibori as compensation for the illegal detention he was subjected to when the British Prisons did not allow him leave on the exact day his prison sentence ended in December, last year”.
Early in March, the two sides will make their final statements and the amount of damages to be awarded to Ibori would be decided.

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