Farouk Lawan’s Lawyers Petition Police IG Over $620,000 Bribe Money…Narrate How Otedola Offered and Paid Lawmaker $250,000 In Abuja Hotel Room
Lawyers to embattled suspended chairman of the House of Reps ad hoc committee on fuel subsidy payments, Farouk Lawan have petitioned the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Dikko Abubakar, asking that chairman of Zenon Oil and Gas, Mr. Femi Otedola be thoroughly investigated over allegations that he paid Lawan $620,000 out of $3 million bribe the lawmaker demanded from him to remove his companies names from the list of indicted companies.
In separate petitions dated June 22 and signed by Lawan’s four lawyers, all Senior Advocates of Nigeria, SANs namely-Ricky Tarfa, Mike Ozekhome, Israel Olorundare and Sam Ologunorisa they demanded for a thorough probe in view of fresh facts and evidence provided by their client that it was Otedola who indeed stormed Lawan’s hotel room to offer him bribe.
A nine-page petition signed by Ozekhome and entitled “Honourable Farouk Lawan and Mr. Femi Otedola: When the complainant becomes the suspect”, which had many annexures, reads in part: “Our client briefed us that he never solicited from Mr. Femi Otedola the sum of Three Million US Dollars ($3, 000, 000, 00) or any other sum at all, as bribe, to enable his oil firms to be left off those indicted.
“The truth is that contrary to the various false publications in the press, which appear to swing the mood of the public against our client, our client maintains that whilst the report of the Committee had been compiled, written and presented before the House and he was putting finishing touches to its formal debate in his hotel room at Protea Hotel, Apo, Abuja (to which he had relocated from his house to escape the unbearable pressure mounted on him by oil marketers, including Mr. Femi Otedola, he was surprised when Mr. Femi Otedola surfaced in the hotel on Saturday, 21, April, 2012 and called his room number.
“When our client let him in, he brought out a bundle of documents which he claimed showed that one of his oil companies, Zenon Oil, already indicted in the reports, did not participate in the fuel subsidy scam. Our client states that, at this time, both Zenon Oil and AP Petroleum (Forte Oil) had been both indicted based on available evidence. Mr. Femi Otedola claimed that he was already aware of this indictment hence he decided to personally bring document to convince our client that was not the case.
“Our client collected the documents. As Mr. Otedola was about to leave, he handed over the sum of $250,000 US Dollars to our client which he said was to ensure that his companies were removed from the list of indicted companies. This was the evening of Monday, the 23rd of April, a few days before the report was to be debated in the House, but few days after the final report had actually been laid before the House on the 17
th of April, 2012. Our client informed us that he had collected the money to display as exhibit that the committee had been under severe pressure and subtle threat to compromise its report.
“Our client states that Mr. Otedola the called him severally and even pleaded with him to come to his house at Aso Drive, Abuja, for more of the documents which he claimed to have forgotten to bring to our client’s hotel room at Protea Hotel, Apo, Abuja.
“Our client said he played along by going there to Otedola’s house in the early hours of the 22
nd of April, 2012 during which Otedola handed over more documents and a further sum of $250,000 US Dollars. Our client states that Mr. Otedola further offered to make a total of $3millon US Dollars.
“As soon as he had collected the total sum of $500,000 US Dollars, our client immediately wrote a letter at 3.47amon 24th of April, 2012 to the Chairman, House Committee on Drugs, Narcotics and Financial Crimes with the letter titled “Offer of Monetary Inducement by Femi Otedola to influence Committee Report”. Our client attached the sum $500,000 offered by Mr. Otedola to him with a promise to bring another $2.5million US Dollars.”