Following recent controversies over alleged sexual misconduct, Daily Trust on Saturday looks at some of the most prominent cases, with public officials smack at the centre, in the last decade.
FCMB boss, Mr Adam Nuhu and the paternity case
This unfolding sex scandal involves the Managing Director of First City Monument Bank, Mr Adam Nuhu and a former employee of the bank, Mrs Moyo Thomas.
Based on multiple reports, Nuhu was accused of fathering two children with the married Mrs Thomas. This came to light after friends of the employee’s husband launched a change.org petition asking the Central Bank of Nigeria to remove Mr Nuhu for causing the death of their friend. The petition which currently has about 3, 000 signatures alleges that Mr Thomas was betrayed by his wife, which led to his death. The petition also asked that the FCMB boss be relieved of his responsibilities at the bank and investigated.
The bank recently released a statement saying Mr Nuhu has proceeded on leave to allow an investigation by the bank’s Board of Directors on the allegations to proceed unhindered.
However, in a twist on Friday, Daily Trust on Saturday received a press statement signed by Mrs Thomas in which she said Tunde Thomas is the father of her children and that on no occasion did she tell him it was not so.
Ogun State commissioner, Abiodun Abudu-Balogun attempted paedophilia
Like that of the FCMB boss, this is an unfolding case where a 16-year-old secondary schoolgirl alleged in a video on Facebook that Abiodun Abudu-Balogun, the Commissioner of Environment in Ogun State tried to rape her.
She said, Abudu-Balogun, who was a member of the House of Representatives, connived with her uncle and a teacher on December 31, 2020 to lure her to the commissioner’s residence at Ita Otu, Ogun Waterside LG, on the pretence that he would assist her secure a job as a computer operator.
The girl narrated how Abudu-Balogun touched her breasts and tried to force himself on her when she refused to succumb. When she screamed, he forced N2,000 into her hands and asked Mr Austin, a teacher, to take her home.
The commissioner, in a signed statement, described the allegation as “political blackmail” by those he called his “adversaries.”
“Let me state emphatically that I never attempted to sexually harass anyone,” he said.
But a statement signed by the Secretary to the State Government, Tokunbo Talabi, on Sunday, announced the commissioner’s suspension from office “pending the conclusion of an independent investigation into the allegation of sexual harassment.”
Although in two separate videos, the schoolgirl and her father, Melojuekun Monsuru, said they were no longer interested in pursuing the case, the Ogun State Police Command insisted on going ahead with the investigation, describing it as an offence against the state.
Sanusi Lamido Sanusi as CBN boss alleged bank romp
One major scandal that rocked the nation is perhaps that of then CBN governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi. In a June 2, 2013 report, Premium Times reported on how as CBN governor, Sanusi, who is married with children, rendezvoused with one Mrs Maryam Yaro, a married mother of two and an assistant director in the bank in a hotel before a board meeting. They were also reported to have done same in Lagos.
The report said, “in the evening of Wednesday February 27, Mrs Yaro flew to Lagos ahead of Mr Sanusi and checked into a hotel in the city, skipping work, at taxpayers’ expense, on Thursday February 28 and Friday, March 1.
“To keep faith with Mrs Yaro’s date, the CBN governor arrived Lagos, travelling on a chartered flight, on the night of February 28, and checked into the Federal Palace Hotel, passage and boarding all at taxpayers’ expense.”
When contacted, Sanusi said he has a personal policy of not responding to such allegations. Also, Mrs Yaro declined making a comment.
Bukar Abba Ibrahim, former Yobe State governor’ dingy hotel room escapade
In 2017 a senator and former governor of Yobe State, Bukar Abba Ibrahim, was shown in a viral video published by Sahara Reporters dressing up in the presence of two women in a dingy hotel room.
Ibrahim however told Premium Times that he had not committed any official wrongdoing and the video was only made public after attempts to blackmail him failed.
“This is a personal, private matter. What does my having been with a girl have to do with the public?
“You know the normal thing: people ask for unreasonable things, and if you deny them, they try to blackmail you if they have a way,” he said.
The senator further said he owed no one an explanation since he was not accused of any crime.
Three Reps’ members misadventure in the US
In 2016, the United States Ambassador to Nigeria, James Entwistle, petitioned the then House Speaker, Yakubu Dogara, that three of its lawmakers were involved in sexual harassment during a trip to the US.
He accused Mark Gbillah (APC-Benue) and Samuel Ikon (PDP-Akwa Ibom) of seeking help from car park assistants to arrange for them the services of prostitutes. Entwistle also said Mohammed Gololo (APC-Bauchi) sexually harassed a hotel house keeper in his Cleveland hotel room.
The honourable members, however, denied the allegations and were later cleared after an investigation by the House of Representatives Ethics and Privileges Committee.
Martins Adedeji Oni’s misdeed at Nigerian Embassy in Germany
A security officer in the Nigerian Embassy in Berlin, Germany, Mr Martins Adedeji Oni, was in November 2020 sacked after being found guilty of sexual abuse and other criminal activities after a probe committee’s investigation.
The Embassy, which made the announcement in a series of tweets on its official handle, said Oni’s sack is coming one month after a viral video on social media showed him in a hotel room, half-naked, arguing with an unknown person who accused him of demanding sex from females who applied for passport renewals.
The Nigerian Ambassador to Germany, Yusuf Tuggar, in a reaction to the viral video said that the embassy has “zero-tolerance policy towards abuse of office and especially of sexual misconduct.”
Mr Oni was suspended from duty on 17 November, 2020 after reports emerged that he received sexual favours in return for help with passport renewals.
Sex for grades: Mr Boniface, Lagos lecturer
A major highlight of 2019 when it comes to the subject of sexual harassment is the BBC Africa Eye documentary, Sex for Grades, by Kiki Mordi which, beamed its searchlight on Igbeneghu Boniface, from the University of Lagos, among others.
In the documentary, the undercover reporters targeted lecturers named by unidentified informants as known serial harassers in West African universities.
A journalist posed as a 17-year-old seeking admission to Igbeneghu Boniface’s department at the University of Lagos. Igbeneghu, a lecturer and a local pastor, asked her about her sexual history, and described a university club in which lecturers kiss girls. He repeatedly asked the reporter for kisses. In one conversation, during one of several such meetings, the reporter suggested to the lecturer that girls who engage in relationships with professors receive unfair treatment.
“Of course, now, that is the benefit. He will pass her very well now,” and adds, “It’s not free for the girl now. Is she not paying for it… with her body?”
Igbeneghu alleged that the BBC “set (him) up” and repeatedly referred to the documentary as a “hoax” on his personal Facebook page.
University of Lagos issued a statement announcing the suspension of Igbeneghu and his church asked him to step down.
Godswil Akpabio, Minister of Niger Delta
The allegation of sexual harassment by Ms Gbene Joi Nunieh, against the Minister of Niger Delta, Godswill Akpabio, was one of several issues in their 2020 clash.
In an interview with Daily Trust, the former Acting Managing Director, Interim Management Committee of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC)accused the minister of corruption, sexual and workplace harassment among others.
But Akpabio, in a statement by Anietie Ekong, his media aide, described the allegations as “litany of lies.” It further said that Ms. Nunieh’s attacks were both personal and sponsored.
Godiya Akwashiki, Nasarawa senator-elect beating in a hotel
A nude video alleged to be of then Nasarawa Deputy Speaker and Senator-elect, Godiya Akwashiki, went viral in March 2019.
The images showed the lawmaker being molested in a 16-second clip in which he was stripped naked. Another showed him seated naked in a car, with only a ripped vest on.
He was hit several times by two people, while he repeatedly said, “Sorry.”
The Deputy Speaker, who represents Akwanga in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly (NSHA) won elections to represent Nasarawa North in the Senate at the February 23 National Assembly election. It was alleged that he was arrested with a married woman, wife of his political godfather, in a hotel in Maitama, Abuja, but the woman was not shown in the video or in the still picture.
A source said the Nasarawa State government convened an emergency meeting over the video that went viral.
When contacted at the time, the mobile number of the lawmaker Akwashiki was switched off, but it was reported that his house was filled with sympathizers when he returned to Nasarawa from Abuja.
The FCT police spokesman, DSP Anjuguri Manzah, said the matter was being investigated but there has not been an update since.
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