Mohammed Umaru Bago, a speakership aspirant for the incoming 9th House of Representatives, has denied a story making the rounds that he was sacked from his job at the defunct Afribank, now Polaris, over fraudulent conducts.
An Abuja based legal practitioner, Paul Ajiroba, had reportedly approached a Federal High Court, Abuja, with a suit seeking to disqualify Hon. Bago from contesting the position of Speaker of the House of Representatives in the 9th National Assembly.
In the suit, marked FHC/ ABJ/CS/598/2019, with Bago, All Progressives Congress (APC) and Polaris Bank Plc as 1st to 3rd respondents and filed on June 3, 2019, the plaintiff wants the court to restrain Umar Bago of Chanchanga Federal Constituency of Niger State from contesting for the position of Speaker of the House of Representatives in the 9th Assembly.
The plaintiff, in the said suit wants the court to determine, “Whether by virtue of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended), the first defendant is qualified to aspire and to run for the office of a member of the House of Representatives since 2011, having been dismissed or relieved from his employment from Afribank Nigeria Plc (now Polaris Bank) for misappropriation, conversion of depositors’ money to personal use and related offences.
However, in a swift response to the said suit, the Bago Campaign Organisation debunked the said allegation describing it as “a feeble attempt by desperate persons aimed at derailing Hon. Umaru Bago’s principled quest for equity, justice and fairness in electing principal officers of the National Assembly, particularly the House of Representatives.”
The statement signed by the campaign spokesman, Hon. Victor Afam Ogene stated that “coming under the guise of a judicial inquest into the decade long sparkling career of Hon. Bago – spanning through three banks, including the nation’s apex financial institution – we make bold to state that the action of these desperados would, in the end, only be tantamount to searching for a pin in a haystack.”
The statement reads in parts, “Although yet to be formally served with any processes in this regard, we observe that the judicial gambit is a last ditch attempt aimed at injecting life into an ebbing campaign of one of the speakership aspirants, who is being haunted by his past profile of proven conviction by the Supreme Court of Georgia for willfully stealing a client’s $25,000.”
“Instead of frontally confronting this brutal fact, which is currently the subject of litigation before the Federal High Court, Abuja, they have rather embarked on a voyage of smear campaign and mudslinging against the person of Hon. Bago, in the mistaken belief that it would gain for them the traction which endless forum shopping and endorsement trips have so far failed to achieve.
“We would be glad to accept service concerning this suit, as we have already instructed our legal team to take it on, on accelerated basis.
“It is also our charge to our lawyers to commence defamation processes against the purveyors of this mindless falsehood.
“This would be in direct opposite to the stance of an ‘anointed’ aspirant who, according to reports, besides evading service since May 24, 2019 when a case was instituted against him, is said to have employed harassment, inducement and falsehood to scare the plaintiff off the case.
“Notably, the current turn of things may well provoke a proper inquiry by the media, governmental agencies, Non-governmental Organisations and the public into the doggy issues of dual personality, multiple dates of birth, social security number fraud and several other infractions which has trailed the said aspirant.”