by Stanley Azuakola
Most Nigerians are hoping that someday soon, the video showing member of House of Representatives collecting bribes from Mr. Femi Otedola would be released or leaked to the public. While the wait continues for such a day, reporters from Premium Times spoke with officials who had seen the video and wrote a story deconstructing all that was captured in the video.
According to the report, there were about five video recordings, each of them about 5-8 minutes long. Thanks to officials from the State Security Service (SSS), Femi Otedola’s house in Asokoro Abuja was fitted with audio and visual recording devices.
Read the rest of the report below:
The lawmaker negotiated the terms of the bribe with Mr. Otedola over a lunch on the first visit, the sources said. He later received the first part of $250,000 on the second visit, which was around 11 p.m.
Then, he got the second part of the money on the third visit which was around 5.05 a.m.
On one of the visits, Farouk came in, sat by Otedola’s right, sorted the huge pile of dollar bills and put some in his pockets,” a source said, citing visual details of the video.
Dressed in a green agbada and a sokoto cap, the sources said, Mr. Lawan stuffed the wads in his pockets and under the cap possibly to conceal the package from Mr. Otedola’s domestic aides since they hadn’t seen him enter with a baggage.
“In the video, Lawan was clearly seen stuffing wads of dollar bills into his pocket; when his pocket was full, to the utter shock of those who watched the video, he removed his cap and concealed the remaining wads of dollar bills inside it and replaced the cap on his head,” the source said.
“Nigerians will reel with laughter if they ever get to watch this video. It is on the one hand hilarious, and on the other hand, shameful.”
Another source told of an audio telephone recording, where Mr. Otedola informed Mr. Lawan that the bribe cash had arrived at the Abuja airport, and that the lawmaker should drive there to pick the package up.
The Committe chairman reportedly responded that he won’t be able to make it to the airport himself but that he could send some of his aides along to pick the package.
The video clip of the bribe payment, has been shown to only a few highly-placed Nigerians. They include President Goodluck Jonathan, Vice president Namadi Sambo, President of the Senate, David Mark, and the Speaker of the House, Aminu Tambuwal.
It was also reportedly played to Nobel Laureate and social campaigner, Wole Soyinka, the only non-government figure to view the footage.
Mr. Soyinka had vowed to lead a devastating street protest if the subsidy scam report, produced by Mr. Lawan’s committee, was swept under the carpet.
But after viewing the clip, a shocked Mr. Soyinka said he had never seen a thing like that and appeared to be backing down, the sources said.