By Olasunkanmi Akoni & GBENGA AKANMU
LAGOS—Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mr. Adeyemi Ikuforiji, has denied media reports that he was arrested and detained by Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, over allegation of perjury and stealing of N7 billion state funds.
It will be recalled that EFCC had said on Friday that Ikuforiji had been arrested.
The embattled Speaker, who spoke with newsmen, yesterday, in Lagos, shortly after his return from EFCC office in Abuja, said he was never arrested and detained.
Ikuforiji said he only honoured an invitation to him by the commission while he was on his way to perform the lesser hajj in Saudi Arabia.
He said: “I was invited and the invitation came late. I got their invitation on my way to the airport for lesser hajj (Umrah) last week. I sent a note to the chairman of the commission that I received the letter late and because it was Ramadan period, I will honour the invitation on September 4.
“When I came back last Thursday, I called them that morning and the officer I spoke with told me that I should come that afternoon. On getting to Abuja, there was heavy traffic on the road because of this Boko Haram thing. So, I had to call them again that I was in the traffic and the officer I spoke with said since it was getting late, it was better I just come on Friday morning. So, I went there to honour the invitation. I was not at anytime arrested by the commission.”
On the alleged N7 billion fraud, he said: “The House has a budget of about N6 billion. How can somebody, even the Speaker is just one of the 40 members. How is he able to steal N7bn out of N6 billion is a question for the petitioners and the authorities to answer.
“How can somebody talk of stealing N7bn out of N6bn? How can anybody in his right senses come up with an allegation of Ikuforiji being an ex-convict in America and convicted of drunk driving; convicted of credit card fraud in 2005?”