Conviction: Gbajabiamila to sue opponents, accusers

With allegations of conviction and dismissal for misappropriation flying everywhere, the Majority Leader of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, has vowed to sue those behind allegations of his conviction in the United States for criminal defamation of character against him and smear campaign on his candidature.
Gbajabiamila is the anointed candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the Speakership of the ninth session of the House.
The director general of the Femi Gbajabiamila/Idris Wase Campaign Council, Hon. Abdulmumin Jibrin (APC, Kano) who addressed a press conference yesterday in Abuja said that the reports in some sections of the media that Gbajabiamila was convicted by the Supreme Court of the State of Georgia is a hatchet job done to puncture his candidature and smear his reputation.
On the decision taken by Gbajabiamila, Jibrin disclosed that “he has now instructed his lawyers to take every necessary legal step to seek redress and sue for defamation with immediate effect.”
He said: “We remain focused and undeterred and prepared for whatever antics they may further unfold. Whatever they choose to do and however, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila and Hon. Ahmed Idris Wase will be on the floor on the 11th live and direct to be elected Speaker and Deputy Speaker respectively to take over from Speaker Yakubu Dogara who ceases to be Speaker from Thursday 6th June 2019 after our valedictory session.
Jibrin denied that Gbajabiamila was ever convicted in the U.S. He said: “For the benefit of doubt, we wish to, once again, state emphatically clear that Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila has never been convicted for any crime in the United States of America, Nigeria or any other country around the world for that matter. He has never been accused of corruption and has no corruption case hanging on his neck in Nigeria or anywhere around the world.
“He has not committed perjury in Nigeria or any country of the world. He was eligible to contest in all previous elections he won and indeed eligible and qualified to contest for the office of Speaker House of Representatives in the 9th Assembly.
“Hon. Gbajabiamila has severally and comprehensively responded to these allegations, provided clarifications and set records straight. The allegations have also been tested and struck out in our court of law. The State Bar of Georgia has also written and categorically stated that “there is no criminal conviction in the matter relating to Hon. Femi and he is currently an active member in good standing of the State Bar of Georgia”. All these facts are in the public domain.”
The campaign DG noted that: “We further wish to state that Hon. Gbajabiamila has not been served any summons by a magistrate’s court neither has he been notified by the Clerk. We are worried that those behind these antics are trying to drag the judiciary and our revered judges to what is clearly a hatched job. The judiciary must not allow itself to be mixed in such cocktail of dirts.”
He maintained that “This campaign of calumny is orchestrated to poison the minds of our leaders against Hon. Femi which has failed woefully. Now the agenda is to smear his reputation through “creation of illusion of truth”. An idea of repeated lying until people are forced to believe.
“We urge the general public to disregard the falsehoods being peddled around. It is also very strange that a private citizen or organization will be filing criminal charges against an individual. From our understanding of legal procedure, that can only be done by the state.”
However, the Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP) has told Gbajabiamila that Georgia Bar Association cannot acquit him of alleged conviction by the Georgia Supreme Court.
In reaction to his press conference, CUPP National Publicity Secretary, Ikenga Ugochinyere, advised the speakership aspirant to go a step further by obtaining a letter from the registrar of the court.
“One wonders when it has become the duty of a Bar Association to sit on appeal over the judgement of the Supreme Court or to declare a person free from conviction.
“Nigerians are asking Femi Gbajabiamila to take it a step further by getting a letter from the Registrar of the Supreme Court of Georgia that he was not convicted in a unanimous decision by a full panel of seven justices of the court. Maybe only then will he realize the futility of his antics,” he stated.
He expressed shock that Jibrin could deny Gbajabiamila’s alleged conviction, and described his denial of the offence of perjury/giving false information under oath as pedestrian.
“He will have his day in court on Monday to answer to the allegations,” Ugochinyere added, and advised him not to attempt to run away from the law.
He condemned what he described as “the unsavoury attacks” on the leadership of the CUPP, and said that the coalition would respond to the attacks “in practical terms on Monday” if Gbajabiamila fails to appear in court.

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