A former Senate President, Senator David Mark, yesterday said the accusations by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) or any other government that he purchased his N748 million Apo Residential House illegally were spurious, contrived and baseless.
He said the EFCC or any other agency were chasing shadows in probing how he bought his house.
He insisted that he did not flout any law.
Mark, who made the clarifications in a statement through his Media Assistant, Paul Mumeh, said if his investigation was about 2019 politics, “no amount of persecution would alter the will of God”.
The ex-Senate President is presently being probed by the EFCC and the Special Presidential Investigation Panel for the Recovery of Public Property.
The statement said: “The property was ‘duly offered for sale, bid for, and purchased like any other person would in line with Federal Government’s Monetisation Policy that was started during the time of President Olusegun Obasanjo.
“I had the right of first refusal. Even if I did not purchase it, someone else would have.
“I am a law-abiding citizen. I did not flout any law.
“Curiously, four houses occupied by the then Presiding Officers of National Assembly were offered to the occupants. All of us, me as the then President of the Senate, Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, the then Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole and his Deputy Bayero Nafada were all given the same offer.
“I am at a loss as to why it is now a subject of contention.”
He said if he was being investigated because of 2019 politics, no one can alter the will of God
The statement added: “If this persecution is about politics, my political party and the 2019 elections, I dare say that only God and Nigerians would decide. No amount of persecution would alter the will of God.
“I had refrained from commenting on this because it is already in the law Court. But they have taken the matter to the court of public opinion.”
“Senator Mark through his lawyer Ken Ikonne in the suit before the Federal High Court, Abuja had said that he followed due process and legally acquired the property from the FCDA on April 27, 2011.
“Senator Mark is also asking the court for a declaration that an order by the Attorney General of the Federation and one Obono Obla of the Presidential Task Force on Recovery of Government Properties compelling him to vacate the aforesaid property without affording him a fair hearing amounted to a denial of his fundamental human rights, unconstitutional and void.
“He recalled that the Federal Executive Council decided to authorise the sale of the properties housing the principal officers of the National Assembly because the general security of the area had been altered/compromised due to the sale of the other houses in the Legislative Quarters to the public.
“Consequent upon which the houses were offered for sale and duly purchased.
“Senator Mark was given the first option of refusal upon which he duly accepted on April 21st 2011 and paid the agreed purchase price to the ad hoc committee on sale of Federal Government houses on April 27, 2011.
credit: The Nation