Where is the $620,000 bribe collected by House of Representatives member Farouk Lawan from businessman Femi Otedola?
The puzzle remained unresolved at the weekend, the government is set to file charges against the lawmaker.
The trial of the suspects may start without the cash as the government is bent on going ahead with the arraignment in the light of the weight of evidence at its disposal.
The Federal Government may file the charges this week, barring last-minute hitches.
The Anti-Corruption Network yesterday asked the government to also arraign Otedola, who said he handed Lawan the cash in a sting operation arraigned by security agents. Lawan accepted collecting the money but refused to surrender it, saying it is proof of Otedola’s pressure on him to remove the oil magnet’s company from the list of those indicted in the subsidy probe.
According to a source, the Special Task Force (STF) which investigated the case submitted its report to the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar and the Attorney-General of the Federation, Mohammed Adoke (SAN), without any trace of the bribe cash.
The source, however, claimed that “the evidence the police made available to the AGF were enough to sustain the prosecution of the suspects”.
The source added: “The STF team tried to locate the bribe sum, which is vital to the trial of the suspects, but it could not because of vested interests in the matter. This is a high-profile case with high-profile intrigues.
“But hope is not lost as there are other evidence ancillary to the fact that the bribe was given and taken.
“The prosecution may have to rely on some clips and statements made on oath by some of those interrogated. The STF did a good job and the investigation was far-reaching although without the bribe cash.
“With this investigation, you will appreciate that the Police did a thorough job.”