$620,000 Bribe: ICPC Re-arraigns Farouk Lawan, Emenalo

-Farouk-EmenaloTwo members of the House of Representatives Ad-Hoc committee, which probed the scam in the fuel subsidy regime in 2012, Farouk Lawan and Boniface Emenalo, have been re-arraigned for collecting $620,000 bribe in their course of duty.

The Independent and Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) re-arraigned the two men on a seven-count charge before Justice Banjoko of a Federal Territory High Court in Gudu, Abuja.

The two legislators again pleaded not guilty to all the counts on Wednesday, as they earlier did on February 1, 2013, when they were first arraigned.

They were accused of collecting the total sum of $620,000 bribe in April 2012 from the chairman, Zenon Petroleum and Gas LTD, Mr Femi Otedola, in order to remove his company’s name from the list of firms indicted by the committee.

After the accused persons took their plea, the defence counsel, Mr O. Jolaawo, urged the court to allow the bail earlier granted his clients on February 8, 2013, by the former trial judge, to continue in the same conditions and terms, which they had both met.

The prosecuting lawyer, Mr Adegboyega Awomolo, did not oppose the application.

The judge granted the request but not until all the four sureties, two among whom stood for each of the accused persons, were present in court and agreed to continue to serve as the sureties for the two accused.

$3 million bribery: Otedola refuses to speak to Reps, insists hearing on allegations must be public

The Chairman of Zenon Petroleum and Gas Limited, Femi Otedola, on Tuesday honoured the invitation of the House of Representatives Ethics and Privileges Committee probing his alleged $620,000 bribe to the suspended Chairman of the ad-hoc committee, Farouk Lawan which probed the management of the fuel subsidy fund.

The committee then went into a closed door session. However, Mr Otedola requested the hearing should be conducted in public.

“I strongly believe that the interest of the public will not be best served if this investigation is held in-camera,” he said.

The committee had invited the billionaire businessman to explain allegations that he gave $620,000 bribe to Mr Lawan, and the erstwhile secretary, Boniface Emenalo, to get his companies off the list of firms indicted for the alleged mismanagement of oil subsidy funds.

Read Mr Otedola speech here.