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I'll Never Conspire Against Jonathan, Metuh Says

October 26, 2017

Mr. Metuh is currently facing a seven-count charge of alleged diversion of N400 million sent to his firm from the Office of the former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki.

The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, former publicity secretary has denied conniving with anyone to bring down the reputation of his erstwhile boss, ex-President Goodluck Jonathan.

Mr. Metuh, who said this via a statement on Thursday, personally signed by him said the ex-president was needed to corroborate evidence in his (Metuh) favour.

Mr. Metuh is currently facing a seven-count charge of alleged diversion of N400 million sent to his firm from the Office of the former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki.

He had requested Messrs. Jonathan and Dasuki to appear in court to serve as witnesses in the case which involved the transfer of funds from the former NSA to an account belonging to his company, Dextra Investment, reportedly on the directive of Mr. Jonathan.

His lawyer had contended that since the directive was given by the former president, he ought to be asked to appear in court.

The court had subsequently issued a subpoena directing the ex-president to appear before it.

In a release by the Save Ijaw Nation Group, Mr. Metuh had been accused of conniving with the federal government to bring down Mr. Jonathan and get himself off the hook.

In his statement, apparently reacting to the accusation, Mr. Metuh said the allegation was false.

Mr. Metuh explained that he was only inviting his former boss to appear in court for, “corroborative evidence in my case.”

He said while he respected the former president and appreciated his contribution to national growth, it was pertinent that he appears to defend him against the charges.

Part of the statement read: “First of all, I state unequivocally that I am completely innocent of the charge against me and therefore have no reason to negotiate with anybody to let me off a non-existent hook.”

“It is therefore inconceivable and completely ridiculous for anybody to think that I would for any reason betray or surrender myself to be used against President Goodluck Jonathan, for whom I have immense respect and served diligently, without any apologies, in and out of office.

“To what end will I conspire with the same set of people who singled me out to be humiliated and openly handcuffed while spreading all manner of malicious stories against me, most of which they even denied outright in court while others remain completely unsubstantiated?

“Ordinarily, the content of the charge against me in the Federal High Court should not breed any worries but for the fact that it now appears that the anti-corruption fight has shifted the burden of proof to a defendant once an allegation is made.”

He flayed the Ijaw group for making unsubstantiated allegations based on media reports.

“On the issue of conniving with the government against former President Goodluck Jonathan, the Save Ijaw Nation Group may be alarmed by successive media reports that he was ordered to be served on Tuesday with an instruction to appear the following day and subsequently given a five-day time limit; setting off a media frenzy as if the former president is needed for reasons more than a mere request by my lawyers for a corroborative evidence in my case.

“I totally concede that this is not deserving of the status, person and image of the former President especially with his contribution and sacrifices to national development and sustenance of democracy in our dear country. Without prejudice to all the foregoing, I accept that it was the need for corroboration on my part that led my lawyers to request for the evidence of the respected former President to assist them in proving my innocence.

“However, with all the controversies arising from the reports of the said pronouncements and the attendant concerns thereof, I have instructed my legal team to revisit and review the entire issue of the subpoena.”