A former senator representing Kaduna central, Shehu Sani, says the bribery allegation against him is an imaginative work of fiction crafted to silence him.
The senator was arrested by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for alleged extortion. And he has been in the custody of the agency.
The EFCC accused Sani of collecting money from Sani Dauda, owner of ASD Motors, promising to pass it on to Ibrahim Magu, acting chairman of the anti-graft agency, to influence an investigation.
He was also alleged to have said he could assist Dauda in influencing a case at the supreme court by bribing Muhammad Tanko, chief justice of Nigeria (CJN), and some other judges.
The CJN denied having anything to do with the former senator.
On Wednesday, officials of the EFCC searched two houses belonging to the senator in Abuja.
In a statement on Friday, Sani said he has never offered bribe to the CJN, and that his arrest is politically motivated.
“The allegations of ‘extortion’ against me is baseless, fact-less, unfounded, hollow and unsubstantial,” he said.
“It is a scripted stream of mischievous concoctions and utter fabrications using a puppet state agent; all aimed at splashing faeces and mud on me.
“The extortion allegation is nothing but a wholesale falsehood, packaged in a phantom anti-graft facade to taint, stain and mute me. That shall never happen if I am alive.
“I have made my statement and provided all my facts against their package of lies and I demand the EFCC to make public all the sheets of our statements and supporting documents for the world to see.
“My detention is unfair, unjust, prearranged and politically motivated.”
The former senator, who is a critic of the Buhari administration, also said the federal government cannot use a false bribery story to shut him up.
“Fascism thrives in frame up of its critics. They claim extortion and here they are closing my bank accounts, searching my houses and offices and demanding I declare my assets, of which I have already done that at the CCB (Code of Conduct Bureau) last year when I left the Senate,” he said.
“Frame-up cannot silence me! I have never ever met with the CJN or any judge or judges or ever called directly or indirectly to offer to give or to give directly or indirectly any form of gratification from Alhaji Sani Dauda.
“I have never ever discussed with ASD on any form of bribe or gratification to be given to any judge or any EFCC official.
“The bribe story is phantom, the bribe story is a fake, imaginative work of fiction, cruelly crafted to smear me, to frame me and to justify my persecution.
“The bribe story is a heap of blatant lies and outright falsehood concocted and fabricated, using a front and the EFCC to premiere a state drama.
“Criminalising me or ‘framing me’ will not silence me, bend me or compromise me.”