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Ohaneze Ndigbo


Metuh: I can never betray Jonathan, I only need him to prove my innocence

Olisa Metuh, former spokesperson of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has said he would never allow himself to be used against ex-President Goodluck Jonathan.

Metuh and his company, Destra Investments Limited are being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on a seven-count charge of money laundering.

He is alleged to have received N400 million meant for procurement of arms from the office of the national security adviser.

Metuh said his decision to ask Jonathan to testify as a defence witness in his trial was in a bid to prove his innocence.

“It is, therefore, inconceivable and completely ridiculous for anybody to think that I would for any reason betray or surrender myself to be used against President Goodluck Jonathan, for whom I have immense respect and served diligently, without any apologies, in and out of office,” he said in a statement released on Thursday.

“To what end will I conspire with the same set of people, who singled me out to be humiliated and openly handcuffed, while spreading all manner of malicious stories against me, most of which they even denied outright in court while others remain completely unsubstantiated?

“Ordinarily, the content of the charge against me in the Federal High Court should not breed any worries but for the fact that it now appears that the anti-corruption fight has shifted the burden of proof to a defendant once an allegation is made.

“Without prejudice to all the foregoing, I accept that it was the need for corroboration of lack of mens rea on my part that led my lawyers to request for the evidence of the respected former President to assist them in proving my innocence.”

Metuh said as a result of the controversies that have emanated from his invitation to Jonathan to testify in his case, he has asked his lawyers to review the subpoena.

“However, with all the controversies arising from the reports of the said pronouncements and the attendant concerns thereof, I have instructed my legal team to revisit and review the entire issue of the subpoena,” he added.

Jonathan failed to appear before the federal high court in Abuja on Thursday when Metuh’s trial resumed.

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