January 10th 2018
Mr Babatunde Fashola SAN,
I read the Daily Trust newspaper of January 2nd 2019, and I watched your recent TV interviews on Channels, and NTA, aired in December 2018. Your alarming and continuous fabrication and distortion of facts about ongoing loan negotiations between China Eximbank and the FGN in respect of the 3050MW Mambilla hydropower project continues to baffle me because you have persisted with the tale of lies.
I wonder why you would not tell Nigerians that loan negotiations with China Eximbank have stalled since 2017 because of your attempt to divert about $600 million from the 3050MW hydropower project to a pet project not hitherto considered by the FEC, and the Chinese Contractors, and Eximbank are insisting on full compliance with the terms of the EPC signed in November 2017. It was in anticipation of your covert operations to subvert the 3050MW power project, that I wrote my initial petition to His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR 20 months ago; about your attempts to frustrate the 3050MW Mambilla hydropower project.
Why must you run to NTA or the Press if you are not guilty?
Your said interviews to the press on the above subject was malicious and reckless with the sole objective to mislead the public. As a lawyer and indeed a Senior Counsel you ought to have exercised restraint in granting interviews on this subject matter which is still under adjudication in Paris; bearing in mind that the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) through the office of Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice has entered appearances/defence.
As a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), you must stop peddling falsehood and check your facts before opening your mouth to speak. First point of correction is that, I have never been convicted of any crime in my life, so it is perplexing that you would go to any length to discredit those who, as it would seem, stand against your pecuniary interest. I really don’t know where you heard your MT Tuma CRIME SCENE story; but I am sure you will publish the case file for Nigerians to read. Mr. Fashola, the law profession is for honorable and honest individuals, and being a Senior Advocate (SAN) requires more of you.
I, therefore, challenge you, Babatunde Fashola, to publish ANY criminal conviction(s) against Leno Laitan Adesanya or ANY of my companies within 7 days, failing which you are advised to go back to NTA and Channels TV to apologise if you don’t want my trouble.
Now, let’s deal with the facts of the Mambilla Project. Recall that in your quest to stop the Mambilla project, you discussed and encouraged the Chief of Staff to the President, Mr Abba Kyari, to remove Sunrise Power and Transmission Company Limited from the project; as reflected in his memo of 22nd May 2017. Furthermore, you then advised COS that Sunrise should to go to Court if we felt aggrieved; knowing full well that any litigation would affect the ability of the FGN to fund the project.
As we have argued for years, and long before you became involved, the 3050MW power project, when completed, would power thousands of industries in the northern part of Nigeria, and create at least 5 million direct and indirect jobs. Despite the compelling nature of the project for Nigeria however, you have chosen to undermine President Buhari and the North by consistently doing everything possible to stop the actualisation of the Mambilla project. By extension, you are misleading His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, into believing the project can commence without a resolution of ongoing legal process. The motivation for your insidious acts has left many puzzled, but one has to fear that Nigeria may once again end up with yet another inordinately expensive judgement debt issued against it.
In my recent letter to His Excellency, I requested, amongst others, that both the EFCC and ICPC be present at our meeting, because I wanted to expose wicked intents emanating from your office that have been frustrating the execution of the 3050MW Mambilla project. I can however only imagine that, afraid of your deeds, you chose instead to run to the national networks to, once again, do what you know best to do - distort incontrovertible facts; but you should not be allowed to continue to get away with these activities that undermine Nigeria.
Nigerians have mistaken your eloquence for honour not realizing perversion of the truth is now a recurring pattern to your diatribe against hardworking entrepreneurs. One must wonder why it is not only us that describe you as a subversive individual - as a similar claim is made by virtually all Genco and Disco operators in the Power Industry.
Beyond your treacherous act to your erstwhile political benefactors, in your characteristic manner, you are also now being ungrateful to the those who gave you a chance to serve in this government; as you have done everything possible since early 2016 to undermine all the good work being done by long term sponsors of the Mambilla Project. You refer to us as ‘middle men’ who add no value, but I ask the more germane question, where were opportunists like you when those you describe as middle men put capital at risk to fund activities that moved the project forward over almost 2 decades? You appear to want to take credit for other people’s years of investments and toil when in reality we made progress in spite of your machinations and not because of your cooperation.
1. Recall that while President Buhari was on a State visit to China in April 2016, you refused to put the Mambilla project on the Bilateral Discussion Agenda; until I appealed to Governors NASIRU El Rufai and Alhaji Mohammed Badaru Abubakar, as well as Agriculture Minister, Chief Audu Ogbe to place the Mambilla project as priority. Rather than tell His Excellency that you did not believe in the Mambilla hydropower project, you expressed extreme anger at being humiliated in front of other Governors and Ministers; and blamed Leno Adesanya for promoting a project I had nurtured since 2000.
2. On the 20th Of May 2016, and as a follow up to Beijing, President Buhari directed you, through the Honourable Attorney General Of the Federation (HAGF) to execute the 3050MW Mambilla hydropower project in compliance with existing legal agreements (Settlement, and GPE Agreements Of November 2012) between FGN and Sunrise;
3: His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR, instructed me personally on the 30th of June 2015 to report any act of corruption that may stall the execution of the Mambilla project, and this is what I addressed in my recent letter “WITHOUT FEAR OR FAVOR OF ANYONE”. In my letter, I informed His Excellency of your insidious attempt on the 16th of August 2017, to get the Federal Executive Council (FEC) to approve a multi billion Solar Power project WITHOUT any feasibility studies, EIA report, budget approval by NASS, No Due Process Certificate. Fortunately for our country, this attempt was detected by FEC members, and your attempt at deception was squashed. Suffice to say that this is what has now provoked you to label me a fraud.
Mr Fashola, next time you are sent on an errand that requires you to lie or fabricate untruths against someone - or are motivated to do so on your own - just so that you may look good, you must tell them to deliver the message themselves or be more honest with yourself. People in Glass homes don’t throw stones.
Our prayer is that, His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari will not, once again, be misled into allowing another avoidable judgment debt to be registered against the Government of Nigeria. No one’s personal interest or motives should be allowed to reign supreme over the Sovereign’s interest. For all the diversionary tactics of rushing to the Press to make up phantom allegations, the information shared within this letter, as you well know, is the real issue, Mr Fashola.
By LENO ADESANYA