SAN Kola Awoderin who was said to have donated N500,000 to Justice Ademola Adeniyi while the lawyer was defending President Muhammadu Buhari in the certificate suit before the 2015 electionhas absolved the president of any role in the matter.
A witness stated in court on Tuesday that the State Security Service, SSS, was told that Kola Awodein, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, gave Justice Adeniyi Ademola N500,000 in 2015.
The witness, Babatunde Adepoju, an operative of the SSS, said the information was provided to the agency by Joe Agi, another senior lawyer charged alongside Mr. Ademola for corruption.
Mr. Adepoju said the SSS did not investigate the claim and that he did not believe the money was a bribe.
Awodein confirmed Wednesday that he actually gave the judge the money, but as a gift to a friend holding a ceremony.
Read his statement distributed by Buhari’s media aide Femi Adesina:
“It is a fact that the sum of money mentioned was personally paid by me as a friend to Mr. Justice Ademola as a personal gift, as our custom well recognizes and demands, on the occasion of his daughter’s High Society wedding solemnized at the Cathedral Church of Christ, Marina, Lagos, on the 9th of May 2015, which I attended in person,” Mr. Awodein said in a message distributed by presidential spokesperson, Femi Adesina.
The lawyer added that he was “fully convinced then, as I remain today, that I could do no less as a friend of longstanding to fairly reasonably support him on that memorable occasion of his daughter’s wedding.
“Anyone and everyone who knows me would readily and unquestionably testify that I am and have always been a man of impeccable integrity on and off the Courts and that such a record speaks always loudly for itself.”
“I would conclude by stating categorically and without any equivocation that ANY link whatsoever with Mr. President, or any court case or cases, of my personal gift from my personal resources delivered to Justice Niyi Ademola by myself on that occasion or any suggestion whatsoever that it was anything but such a gift or that it ever came from Mr. President or at his instance or that I was acting, under any circumstances, on his behalf is most malicious, utterly ridiculous and in very very poor and revolting taste and most undeserving of any further comments,” he said.