By Kenneth Ehigiator
LAGOSâ€”Former Governor of Lagos State, Senator Bola Tinubu, yesterday, challenged the Peoples’ Democratic Party, PDP, to petition the State Security Service, SSS, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission,Â EFCC and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, ICPC, over allegation of attempting to bribe judges handling the Election Petition Tribunal of the last re-run gubernatorial election in Ekiti State with N4.2 billion.
The PDP had, yesterday, accused the ex-governor of trying to bribe the judges to rule in favour of Action Congressâ€™ governorship candidate, Dr. Kayode Fayemi.
Tinubu told newsmen at the Presidential Wing of the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, that the allegation was a cheap blackmail, adding that PDP had succeeded in desecrating the judiciary by seeing the judges as thieves.
He said:Â â€œI wonâ€™t take it beyond ordinary stupid blackmail of a desperate party, bunch of liars who have always attempted to discreditÂ the judiciary. If they say the judiciary is the last hope of the common man, are they not desecrating the same judiciary? This is their trend; this is their desperation; they are blackmailers.
â€œIn the first instance, letâ€™s look back at their antecedent, they did it in Edo State when judgment was coming, they were making allegations that the judiciary was about to be bribed. Why wouldnâ€™t they pursue the information from sources?
â€œIf they are diligent on their information and if their information is reliable, why wouldnâ€™t they petition ICPC, EFCC, SSS and other security agencies to set a bribe case?Â The amount being mentioned, N4bn, is such a huge amount of money, where is it coming from? Which bank? What source and in what denomination?
â€œThey couldnâ€™t say that. What are they saying? You can see the ranting of an ant. They know they have a very stupid case; they got the mandate in a fraudulent and violent manner in the first place. If we donâ€™t believe in the judiciary, we will not go to the court.
â€œPeople know me in this country, even when I was in the office, each time I have a conflict or any dispute to verify, instead of taking to the streets, I developed a tradition of using the judiciary to get things done.
â€œThat is where I believe, that is where AC stands. Our manifestoes, constitution, ideology is to enrich the judiciary and settle our disputes instead of embracing violence. They are the ones who have attempted to amputate the liberty of man through the gun.
â€œThey perverted the ballot boxes, fraudulently used guns, matchet and all sort of intimidations and violent manners to obtain their mandate. That mandate we challenge and we will continue to do so.â€
Tinubu said the PDP was scared that judgement would not be in favour of its candidate in the election, Governor Segun Oni.
He expressed regrets that the party has, though its allegation, branded judges thieves, wondering why it was fidgeting, especially when he had not appeared in any of the tribunal sittings in either Ekiti or Osun States.
â€œThey didnâ€™t think of what will happen by desecrating judiciary and calling them thieves. Are they rams that you can procure just like a Sallah items?Â They have not seen me in Osun, even though they can not bar me if I want to go at anytime, they have not seen me in Ekiti, even though they can not bar me if I want to go because at any given time, I have my right to freedom.
â€œThey are running scared apparently for me as an individual. They are the ones attempting to bribe, may be they have been resisted because they are the bunch of people who think their money can procure anything for them.
â€œWe want to believe that men and women of the bench are good enough. Once in a while, you have bad eggs here and there, we are still developing as a nation, but I think in no time, we will concentrate fully on the job at hand in the nation instead of listening to spurious, unfounded allegation developing from Isi ewu joint of petition writers sponsored by them.â€