CONVENER, Save Nigeria Group, Pastor Tunde Bakare, says Managing Director, Zenon Oil and Gas Limited, Femi Otedola and the suspended Chairman, House of Representatives Ad hoc Committee on Fuel Subsidy Management, Farouk Lawan, are both culpable in the bribery scandal currently rocking the House.
Bakare said this during a news conference in Lagos on Sunday. He submitted that if Nigeria were to be a decent society, Otedola, Lawan and all those involved in the scandal would be in detention by now.
The cleric said, “Otedola gives the bribe and Farouk Lawan takes the bribe, both of them are criminals. But they cleverly said he (Otedola) contacted the State Security Service in order to give marked money.
“Where did they get the money from? Did the money come from government? These are oil vultures. What is the foundation of his riches; is it not corruption? Has Nigeria not been celebrating corrupt fellows? Corruption in Nigeria is now endemic.
“In a decent society, both Otedola and Lawan and all the people involved would be behind bars by now. Unfortunately, Lawan’s greed and naivety got him into a terrible mess. He had the opportunity of being a hero; he ended up a villain because of naivety and greed.”
Bakare, the Vice Presidential candidate of the Congress for Progressive Change for the 2011 presidential election, accused President Goodluck Jonathan of being on a mission to “bankrupt and balkanize Nigeria.”
He said the bribery scandal rocking the House was planned by the government to distract Nigerians attention from the N3trn spent by the Jonathan administration without appropriation.
“President Jonathan is dancing to the drumbeat of destiny. His destiny is to bankrupt Nigeria. He has the full support of corporate cowboys and oil vultures. It is clear that Nigeria is a nation under divine judgment. We need a cleansing in this land and if we do not stand up now to do what we ought to do, there may not be 2015 for Nigerians,” he said.
The Presidency, last week, had denied having a hand in the scandal involving Lawan.
A statement by presidential spokesman, Reuben Abati, had said, “The Presidency denounces the lame and diversionary attempt by some newspapers to drag the person and office of the President into the very unsavoury bribery scandal involving the Chairman of the House of Representatives’ Fuel Subsidy Probe Ad-Hoc Committee and a well-known petroleum products marketer.
But Bakare added, “Revolution could happen in several ways because God will not come down; He will always use people. I want you to hear me loud and clear: I am not asking for anybody’s blood to flow because the God that I serve shed his blood for mankind.
“He does not take people’s blood. But whatever way God will deliver this nation as He did in Israel he must deliver us, else we are going through extinction. If the wicked will not relent; if they continue their evil ways, they will have themselves to blame when God’s fury comes upon them.
“But it is nothing but outright wickedness for us to be going through what we are going through in our nation. The events that have happened in the last two weeks are sad, very sad; they are sickening, very sickening; they are scary, very scary. Any of the people in the Dana plane which crash could have been you or I. And rather than sitting down and thinking of how to avoid future disaster, fix our roads and build infrastructure, what they are thinking about is to circumvent and sidetrack issues, let’s plant bribe, let’s see the one who gives and the one who receives.”
He urged Nigerians not to allow the bribery allegation to take their focus away from the real issue of Jonathan’s illegal spending.
Bakare argued that if the entire Nigerian system was not cleansed, nobody should think of 2015 producing any result that would benefit the people.