Information available to 247ureports through sources within the cabal in the Peoples Democratic Party [PDP] indicates the $620,000 bribery scandal against the Chairman of the Adhoc Committee on fuel subsidy payment probe may have over poured onto the office of the Deputy Speaker of the lower chamber of the National Assembly [NASS]. Sources reveal that the Deputy Speaker, Emeka Ihedioha may have become another victim of the bribery scandal.
According to sources, Hon. Farouk Lawan may not have been the lone victim in the conspiracy to change the leadership at the lower chamber of the NASS. The new revelation, as a source states, was that some of the officers of NASS who collected the $3m from the billionaire business man, Mr. Femi Otedola, did so with the
knowledge of some of the principal officers.
Particularly, the deputy speaker, Emeka Ihedioha who presided over the committee of the whole house when the report is adopted, knew about the bribe and “that explains why he called on Farouk Lawan to speak on item 29 during the consideration on the subsidy report.”
When he was recognized, Farouk Lawan then requested for the deletion of Mr Otedola’s Zenon Oil and two others and thus absolved them from any wrong doing.
Ihedioha thereafter put the question and it was carried, a decision that is making some members to now argue that the deputy speaker might have been briefed about the $3million dollars in which $620,000 had been paid to Farouk Lawan as installment.
To this end, over 350 members are now mounting pressure on Speaker Aminu Tambuwal to summon emergency session, with a view to taking a position on the saga.
It was also learnt that the speaker has summoned Mr Ihedioha and some principal officers to brief him on what they know about the $3 million bribe.
An aide of the deputy speaker is said to be moving round to ensure that the issue as it affects his boss is swept under the carpet and shut from the press.
The principal officers of the House have over the past few days holding several meetings, on the next line of action, and thus resolved to adhere to the Legislative agenda hinged on accountability and transparency.
Recall that Farouk Lawan, the chairman of the House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee on the Monitoring of the Subsidy Regime shameless admitted that he received $620,000 bribe from billionaire businessman Mr Femi Otedola less than 24 hours after he denied the allegation.
“I wish to categorically deny that I or any member of the committee demanded and received any bribe from anybody in connection with the fuel subsidy probe.” Farouk earlier stated in a press statement.
Our source also believes that some other oil companies and agencies may have been force to give bribe to the Farouk Lawan led committee but will be too afraid to come out to speak up “because given bribe too constitute an offence.”
This latest subsidy scandal is coming barely a month after a N44 million bribery allegations is levelled against the former chairman of the house committee on capital market, Herman Hembe who allegedly demanded the money from now suspended Director General of Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC, Arunma Otteh.