The personality clash between the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Justice Minister, Mr. Bello Adoke (SAN) and Dino Melaye, chief executive officer (CEO) of Anti-Corruption Network is getting messier by the day. Adoke in a rejoinder denied any wrongdoing in the allegations levelled against him by Melaye.
Melaye, a former member of the House of Representatives, in a press report, accused the minister of abuse of his office, public trust and corruption.
But in a letter refuting the allegations, Adoke’s counsel, Mr. Ahmed Raji (SAN) rather noted that it was the minister that initiated moves to probe Melaye by writing the inspector general of police (IGP). The duellists from Kogi State had been at each other’s jugular over allegations of corruption and abuse of public trust.
A letter by Raji on behalf of Adoke reads: “We are issuing this statement on behalf of our client, Mr. Mohammed Adoke, SAN, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice. “Following the tendentious allegations made by Melaye against the person of our client, we wrote a letter on April 23 to the inspector general of police, wherein we requested the IGP to investigate all the allegations made by Melaye.
“We therefore dispute the headline in the publication contained in the Sahara Reporters of May 10 that Jonathan initiated probe of Adoke.” Adoke’s lawyer cited a part of the letter he claimed was written to the IGP by him and noted that “we have our client’s instructions to request you to kindly cause an investigation to be carried into all the allegations by promptly inviting the said Otunba Dino Melaye to come and justify all the allegations he has made which we hasten to say are nothing but criminal libel.” He insisted that the “current exercise embarked upon by the police is therefore at the instance of our client and not the president as insinuated.”
Raji stated that, “while our client concedes the right of every individual to freedom of speech, it is our contention that the freedom goes with a duty. It is not a licence for anyone to make any unsubstantiated allegation against any individual. “And this is why our client has deemed it fit to invite the police authority to look into the allegations and make appropriate findings.”
Melaye had petitioned President Goodluck Jonathan and chronicled cases of flagrant abuse of office and incompetence against Adoke. In the petition, the president was urged to sack Adoke while the minister was accused of “massive corruption, abuse of office and gross incompetence,” with a long list of cases and issues to back its claims to show Adoke the way out.