A federal lawmaker, Abdulraheem Olawuyi, has reacted to allegation of embezzling N70m campaign funds made by Nigeria’s information minister, Lai Mohammed.
Olawuyi, who is representing Kwara state’s Ekiti/Isin/Irepodun/Oke-Ero constituency in the house of representatives, was accused of financial impropriety on Saturday.
POLITICS NIGERIA learned that the Minister who spoke at the inauguration of a new secretariat of the Kwara branch of the All Progressives Congress (APC), alleged that during the re-run election in Olawuyi’s constituency, the lawmaker could only account for N30 million out of the N100 million raised.
“They should explain what happened to the balance of N70 million that Ajulo kept and refused to give us during the election,” the minister said.
But Olawuyi, during a press conference on Sunday, debunked the allegations, describing them as “frivolous, baseless, wild”.
“The minister is only being economical with the truth, petty and resorting to the politics of pull him down,” the lawmaker stated. Stating his own account, Olawuyi stated that he personally handed over 32.5 million naira to the minister, following the donation of a Governor from one of the North central states.
“Let me give you the details by the details of what transpired in the build up to the by-election. A North Central State Governor reached out to me on personal ground to donate to the 2018 by-election and when the minister got wind of the donation, he immediately reached out to me and asked me to bring the money.
“However, I immediately contacted a few of our trusted party elders to intimate them of the development, but they counselled me against sending the money to the minister based on his antecedent with money.”
“Also, on my own, I personally gave Alhaji Lai Muhammed the sum of N32.5m, with the full knowledge of the former party chairman, Bashiru Bolarinwa, for election purposes; the minister and Bashir Bolarinwa cannot deny this except there is no conscience left.”
“It will also interest the public to know that one senior Federal Government official told Governor AbdulRazaq who was then the candidate of our party that Lai Mohammed reached out to him and claimed that there was no money for the bye-election campaign in Kwara.”
“The official whose name I won’t mention here spoke and pleaded with our Governorship candidate (now the Governor) and asked him to release N50 mullion to the minister, which was released but the money was never accounted for nor used for campaign purposes as envisaged,” he narrated.
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