Mojeed Alabi, a Reporter with New Telegraph, has received threat to his life by Adelani Yusuff, brother of Honourable Lasun Yusuff, the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives.
The threats followed an exclusive investigation by the journalist on the violation of Public Procurement Act and the Code of Conduct for public officials by Lasun Yusuff. SaharaReporters republished the investigation and its follow-up, with the journalist’s permission.
The report, titled ‘Exposed! Nigeria’s Deputy Speaker In N1.1bn Water Contract Scam’, and published on Thursday, had revealed how the Deputy Speaker used his own personal company — Nur and Company Nigeria Limited — to win and execute two mini-water schemes awarded by the Ogun-Oshun River Basin Development Agency on behalf of the Federal Ministry of Water Resources to the tune of N1.7billion.
On Thursday, same day the first part of the investigative report was published, Adelani visited the family house of the Alabis at Awoleye Memorial Chamber, Jagun Compound, Ilobu, headquarters of Irepodun Local Government in Osun State, threatening the family that the reporter would be “severely dealt with”.
According to Alabi’s elder sister, Mrs. Mojirade Olateju, who witnessed the incident, Adelani had earlier called her on a mobile phone to know her whereabouts, saying there was an urgent issue to discuss.
Olateju explained: “I was at the family house to see our mum when I received the call and I told him (Adelani) that I was at the family house. Soon he came over and complained about the report in New Telegraph, saying Mojeed had damaged the reputation of his brother, the Deputy Speaker.
“I had no knowledge about what he was saying but before I could calm him down, he started raising his voice, threatening that he would deal with my brother. He said since he does not go to school, the only way he knows is to mobilise people to deal with him. He swore by saying ‘walahi’ he would make real his threat.
“Since I know that ‘walahi’ is an Arabic word for swearing, I then replied him that if anything should happen to my brother he would be held responsible. He replied me by saying that my brother would even be dealt with in our presence.”
Afterwards, Olateju, accompanied by her husband, Mr. Funsho Olateju, an engineer, visited the Police Station at Ojutu Area in the community to formally lodge a complaint.
The police immediately invited the Deputy Speaker’s brother to the station. He was found at the constituency office of the Deputy Speaker, and was taken to the police station, where he was made to write an undertaking that was witnessed and signed by Mr. Sikiru Yusuff, another brother of the Deputy Speaker.
Mrs Folashade Odoro, Public Relations Officer of the Police in the state, confirmed the development, but said everything was under the control and adequate measures had been taken to address the situation.
“Yes, I can confirm the development but I think it was a mere disagreement which has been resolved,” she said. “I also assure you that adequate measures have been taken to forestall any bad situation.”