Chairman of the House Committee on Narcotics, Drugs and Financial Crimes, Hon. Jagaba Adams Jagaba (PDP, Kaduna) yesterday compounded the woes of erstwhile chairman of the subsidy probe committee, Hon. Farouk Lawan describing his utterances as “callous and untrue”.
Lawan had said after collecting the bribe money from Femi Otedola, he reported to Jagaba and handed over $500,000 with a letter of complaint.
But in his first media briefing since the story broke out, Jagaba declared that up till today, he has not received any letter or money from Lawan, saying it was “calculated to smear my hard-earned reputation”.
According to Jagaba, “I never received any letter, or money, or any other exhibit from Farouk Lawan.
“On the 11th July 2012; the police STF graciously arranged for a meeting between Hon. Farouk Lawan and myself, between the hours of 3 and 4pm. Farouk, in his opening remarks, stated that he reported the matter to me because of my position as the chairman, House Committee on Drugs, Narcotics and Financial crimes and not because I was Involved in the bribery saga”.
Jagaba continued: “He also told the police that he involved me in the matter because he thinks that that would enhance his case in court. We faced each other before the police STF. I then put the question: ‘Hon. Farouk, did you give me $500, 000 or any money for that matter?’ This was a question the outspoken Farouk could not answer. He kept mum till I left.”
The lawmaker said “Hon. Farouk Lawan had alleged that he wrote a letter to me attaching $500,000. That is callously untrue and in fact, calculated to smear my hard-earned reputation, a reputation I painstakingly built since 1999. I never received any letter, or money, or any other exhibit from Farouk Lawan”.
Jagaba warned Lawan to desist from using his name or face court case. “Hon. Farouk Lawan should stop this blackmail forthwith or else, I will have no option than take the appropriate legal action against him and to seek compensation befitting my status. Enough is enough!”
Denying any dealings with Lawan, Jagaba declared “I saw for the first time the purported letter on a page of the Leadership Newspaper, page 6 of 14th June, 2012; and the closest copy which I saw and touched, was the copy he presented to the Police Special Task Force (STF) investigating the bribery scandal”.
On his interrogation by the House Ethics and Privileges Committee, Jagaba disclosed , “I was also invited by the House Committee on Ethics and Privileges today being 12th July 2012 at 1:00pm, and I went and I asserted that, I have not been given any letter or money as claimed by Hon. Farouk Lawan.
“I have no knowledge of such transactions and I am not in custody of any money or any other exhibit given to me by Farouk or any other person.”
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