Imposter Nwabudike Finally Gets Liberian Citizenship
.... This comes after the controversial former LACC boss, on several occasions lied under oath during a confirmation hearing before the Senate that he was a Liberian.
The former chairman of the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC) and a confidante of President George Weah, Cllr. Augustine Ndubusi Nwabudike has finally been conferred Liberian citizenship after impersonating for decades as a citizen.
Nwabudike, born a Nigerian, obtained his Liberian citizenship on February 9, after renouncing his previous nationality. Resident Judge Korboi Nuta of Criminal Court “B” at the Temple of Justice in Monrovia performed the conferral ceremony last week.
Nuta announced that the character-stained lawyer was a citizen after meeting all the requirements and going through the proper procedures of the court.
This comes after the controversial former LACC boss, on several occasions lied under oath during a confirmation hearing before the Senate that he was a Liberian. As a buddy and confidante of Weah, Nwabudike got appointed to three tenured positions in a space of two years despite issues around his nationality.
Nwabudike was first appointed as head of the Governance Commission before being appointed to head the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission. He managed to get confirmed by the senate and took up these posts but his luck ran out when his next nomination arrived in 2020 when Weah appointed him to head the National Elections Commission.
He has lied about almost everything including his naturalization papers, date of birth, and references. He told Senators then that he naturalized as a Liberian in 1982 at the age of 16, arguing that he was accompanied by an adult, something the country’s alien and naturalization law does allow since an applicant must be 21.
However, he had earlier told the Daily Observer in an exclusive interview that he naturalized in 1988, after he moved to Liberia in June of 1988, the same year he purportedly completed his undergraduate studies in Nigeria.
He submitted to the Senate passports bearing different dates of birth, while his school records from the University of Liberia had another birthdate completely different from the passports.
A photocopy of what he claimed was his naturalization certificate was also submitted but with no resident permit number — a document every naturalized citizen must first obtain before applying for citizenship.
Court and Immigration officials testified that the self-proclaimed naturalized Liberian was not a Liberian as he has claimed. There were no records at Criminal Court B to authenticate that he was naturalized in 1982 as claimed.
“This is to certify that after a perusal of the records of this Honorable Court on the hereinabove name (Augustine Ndubusi Nwabudike regarding his naturalization of May, A.D 1982, we have not found any document up to the issuance of this certificate,” Criminal Court B, Clerk of Court Ben George Teah reply the senate after a request then.
“In furtherance of our check, we communicated with the Liberian Immigration Service and they replied that after a thorough search of their records, they have not found any information on the aforesaid individual regarding his legal residence status or naturalization,” the court’s clerk added.
Nwabudike’s testimonies before senators and the documents he tendered as evidence were replete with inconsistencies, leaving Senators with no option but to reject his nomination.
But after his rejection, Weah made frantic efforts to keep Nwabudike at his old post at the LACC despite an overwhelming vote of no confidence expressed not just by the lawmakers, but the Liberian populace in his crony.
The disgraced lawyer was later disbarred from the Liberian National Bar Association after investigations into how he obtained his citizenship proved that he was an imposter, though he had also graduated from the Louis Arthur Grimes School of Law under the status of a citizen of Liberia and admitted to the LNBA where has been practicing law for many years.
Many Liberians, including Montserrado County Senator Abraham Darius Dillon, were calling for Nwabudike to face criminal prosecution and perjury charges for lying under oath before the senate confirmation hearing committee here.
Despite all these controversies, and the government’s failure to prosecute him in the face of glaring pieces of evidence, Nwabudike has finally seen his wish of becoming a Liberian citizen fulfilled.
Last year Nwabudike filed a petition before the Supreme Court which resulted in the court inquiring about Justice Minister Frank Musah Dean, requesting opinions relative to Nwabudike's petition for affirmation of his allegiance to Liberia as a citizen.
The petitioner, having stated in his complaint that his father, who died in 2008, was a naturalized Liberian and he had been born after his father’s naturalization process, requested the Court to allow him to become a Liberian.
Thereafter, the Minister of Justice instructed the Liberia Immigration Service (LIS) to conduct an investigation related to the suspended lawyer’s desire to become a Liberian citizen.
The LIS then conducted an investigation and recommended that the former LACC boss be administered the oath of allegiance to become a citizen of Liberia, consistent with the Alien and Nationality Law of Liberia.
Dean then submitted his opinion in which he stated in his conclusion inter alia that he has determined "A. Ndubusi Nwabudike is eligible to apply for a certificate of citizenship consistent with section 21.31(2) of the Alien and Nationality Laws of Liberia."
Nwabudike’s eligibility is supported by the records of the LIS which established that his father acquired naturalization in 1954, prior to the petitioner’s birth in 1963. Dean said that his determination is pursuant to sections 21.31(182) and 21.50(f) of the Alien and Nationality Law.
Considering Dean’s opinion, the Supreme Court mandated the Criminal Court B to administer the oath of allegiance to the petitioner, since the Justice Ministry, through the Attorney General, had indicated that he had done that which is required by law.