People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has defended the alleged bribe paid into the bank accounts of its national working committee (NWC) members, saying it was housing allowance.
Gatekeepers News reported on Thursday that six members of the PDP NWC returned the ‘surprise’ monies ranging from N28 million to N36 million found in their respective bank accounts following reports on misappropriation of funds.
The members in question include: 1. Ambassador Taofeek Arapaja: Deputy National Chairman South
2. Prof. Stella Effah-Attoe. National Woman Leader.
3. Chief Dan Osi Orbih.
National Vice Chairman South-South.
4. Dr Alli Odefa.
National vice Chairman South-West.
5. Hon Olasoji Adagunobi-Oluwatukesi
National vice chairman South-West.
6. Hon Setonji Koshoedo
Deputy National Secretary.
The members, in a separate letters addressed to the party’s national chairman, Dr Iyorchia Ayu, confirmed that they were not notified nor informed about the purpose of the fund.
Stella Effah-Atoe was the only NWC member that said the money was for house rent, adding that she had to return it because of “uncomfortable media reportage”.
In it’s defence on Friday, PDP said the NWC members were paid for housing allowance.
Debo Ologunagba, the party’s national publicity Secretary, said the money went through due process before being paid into the accounts of the members of the NWC.
“The attention of the national working committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has been drawn to misrepresenting reports in a section of the media alluding strange and unfounded motives to the housing allowance duly approved and paid to NWC members and staff of the party,” the statement reads.
“The NWC has noted that this misleading report stemmed from an unfounded publication by a particular media outlet which suggested that the housing allowance, an entitlement duly approved and paid to national officials and staff of the party amounted to bribery.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the PDP states in an unequivocal term that no funds were paid into the account of any member of the NWC as a bribe for any purpose whatsoever for that matter.
“To set the record straight, the housing allowance being referred to went through the due process of the party in line with the conditions of service and entitlement of the staff and principal officers of the party.
“If any individual, for any reason decides to return money duly approved and paid, such does not in any way suggest that the money was paid as bribe or indicate that it was illegitimate or unlawfully paid.
“A bribe is defined as money or any other valuable consideration given or promised with a view to corrupting the behavior of a person especially in that person’s performance as a public official.
“This is not the case in the payment of housing allowance duly approved for officials and staff of the party.
“The PDP therefore urges all members, teeming supporters and the general public to disregard the report and misleading insinuation which are clearly designed to malign the PDP, cause disaffection and distract our party from our mission to rescue, rebuild and redirect our nation from the misrule of the All Progressives Congress(APC).”