A Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, John Inyang Okoro, has said that the Department of State Services (DSS) is after him because he refused a bribe from the Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Amaechi.
Okoro, whose house was raided by the DSS on October 8, alleged that Amaechi had approached him to compromise the governorship election appeals from Akwa Ibom, Abia and River states, but that he declined to fall in line.
In a letter to the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), the judge alleged that Amaechi was desperate in his demand.
“Mr Ameachi said All Progressive Congress mandated him to inform me that they must win their election appeals in respect of Rivers State, Akwa Ibom State and Abia State at all costs,” Okoro alleged.
“For Akwa Ibom State, he alleged that he sponsored Mr Umana Umana, candidate of All Progressive Congress for the election, and if he lost Akwa Ibom appeal he would have lost a fortune.”
“Mr Ameachi also said that he had already visited you and that you had agreed to make me a member of the panel that would hear the appeals. He further told me that Mr Umana would be paying me millions of naira monthly if I cooperated with them.”
He reminded the CJN that he had reported the bribery attempt to him in February.
“I strongly believe that my travail is not undermined but with the verbal report I made to you on 7th February 2016, about the visit to my official residence by Honourable Rotimi Amaechi, former governor of Rivers State and now Minister of Transportation,” Okoro said.
However, Amaechi has denied the allegation, describing it as a figment of Okoro’s imagination.
He also threatened to sue the judge.
“This accusation from Justice Okoro against Amaechi is a figment of his imagination, concocted to obfuscate and politicize the real issues for his arrest and DSS investigation of allegations of corruption against him,” he said in a statement on Tuesday.
“The claims by Justice Okoro against Amaechi are blatant lies, bereft of any iota of truth or even logic. Amaechi did not, and has never approached Justice Okoro in respect of the cases Okoro mentioned or any other case.
“This is a cheap attempt, albeit, political move to drag the name of Amaechi into something he knows nothing about. Justice Okoro should face his issues and leave Amaechi out of it. He will be hearing from our lawyers.”
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