The three House of Representatives members who were accused of sexual misconduct by former U.S. ambassador to Nigeria James Entwistle are set to sue the U.S. government for $1bn in damages, The Punch reports.
The lawmakers are House Deputy Chairman, Committee on Petroleum Resources (Upstream), Mr. Terse Mark-Gbillah (Benue); Mr. Samuel Ikon (Akwa Ibom); and Mr. Mohammed Garba-Gololo (Bauchi) were exonerated of the allegations on Tuesday by the House of Representatives.
Mark-Gbillah, who spoke on behalf of the three lawmakers, stated that the US Government, Entwistle, the Marriot Hotel, the US Embassy and their agents would be sued for damages.
Mark-Gbillah said, “We won’t let the matter go like that because our reputation has been defamed internationally and there is also the cancellation of our visas to consider, a decision that has still not been reversed.
“In the American archives, the records have not been set straight. As a matter of fact, this has already affected the members of one of our families.
“We will be seeking legal redress in the US; we are going to take the hotel to court, the Marriot Hotel, the parent brand, the place we stayed (in the US). We are going to take the (former US) ambassador himself and the US State Department, who are his employers to court. We are going to be taking the local organisers of the programme to court as well.
“We will be seeking among other things, an internationally-published apology to us as individuals, to the National Assembly and to Nigeria by the US Government.
“We are going to be seeking damages from all concerned parties and right now, we are looking at suing in the region of $1bn.
“Already, contacts have been made with various law firms in the US. We want to use a very reputable law firm.
“You can now see that the revocation of our visas is now hindering our ability to visit the US physically to do the ground work. We are liaising with our lawyers via email messages and telephone calls.
“The lawyers will still advise us on whether to ask for damages of up to $1bn because the damage they did to us can’t be quantified in financial terms.”