ABEOKUTA – A former House of Representatives members from Ife Federal Constituency of Osun State, Rotimi Makinde, has engaged in a brawl with the CEO of Ojulowo Omoluabi Empire Holdings Limited, Victor Mark, over a N90 million contact fund.
Mark’s company had been awarded a contract to construct a radio station at the Federal Polytechnic, Damaturu in Yobe State.
It was gathered that Makinde, who was a member of the polytechnic’s governing council, was instrumental to how Ojulowo Omoluabi Empire Holdings was awarded the project in April, 2023.
However, the former lawmaker launched an attack on the CEO of the company, accusing him of relocating to the United Kingdom with the project fund.
In a swift reaction, Mark replied that Makinde had collected N27.9 million of the money meant for the completion of the project, asking him to return same immediately.
Posting the Abeokuta office of the contractor on his Facebook, Makinde said: “My dear brothers and sisters, when you’re dealing with frauds and liars, listen more to what they don’t say than what they do. I can’t but apologize to the owner of this lovely building situated in the heart of Abeokuta. Victor Eniola Mark, the former M.D of Oodua FM, Ile Ife, he ‘Japa’ from this building he claimed to be his own and which he branded Omoluabi House when indeed he lack virtues of Omoluabi.”
In his reaction, the company warned Makinde to refund the sum of N27,930,000 he collected without delivering on the job. Even when only 50 per cent of the contract sum that have been paid.
Speaking through a statement signed by the company’s Executive Director of Operations, Josephine Amadi, the company told Makinde to refund the money within 48 hours or risk jail term, saying he has bank details of how the money was sent into his account.
“It is pertinent to state that Rotimi Makinde requested transfer of funds (to the tune of 27,930,000 naira only) for the purpose of the construction and furnishing of the project in Damaturu, Yobe State and has acknowledged the receipt of these funds.
“Rather than deliver on his side of the contract, Rotimi Makinde has abandoned the job and began to threaten the life of the Group Chairman of the company, while flaunting his affiliation with the ruling party as reason why he is untouchable and has the abilities to make good his threats without being held accountable.
“The company had to look for alternative means of funds as it is name on the contract in order to pursue the project and deliver.
“During this time, amicable resolution, diplomacy and passionate appeals have been made.
“Rather than be honourable, Rotimi Makinde has shown himself to be a dishonourable and wicked blackmailer who threatens to let the world loose should our Chairman go public with the evidence.
“He did not stop at that but also started to contact friends and mutual partners to discredit our Chairman and put forth lies on Facebook.
“He has posted pictures of our Chairman with terrible captions on his Facebook page as well as on those of a callous blogger, with the aim of threatening him to silence.
“At the early stage, the blogger was approached with proof and he deleted his previous post and apologized to our Chairman (evidence of post and apology also exist.
“However, it appears the blogger has now been paid enough to risk jail-term for his paymaster,” the statement read.
It was alleged that Makinde had threatened Mark to “either be silent or attempt to visit Nigeria at the cost of his life,” saying he is using political powers to suppress the truth.
“What Rotimi Makinde has forgotten is that threatening the life of our Chairman and posting his pictures with misleading and defamatory statements only adds to his already existing fraudulent acts which is punishable under the law, no matter how highly placed he thinks he is.
“He has also forgotten that evidence with which he acknowledged receipts of these funds are available and would be tendered to the appropriate authorities in due course.
“It might be necessary to remind him that transfers made by banks are traceable and undeniable and a search of the accounts that were credited will show the movement of funds by him,” it was stated.
It was added that “the funds in question transferred based on his request to two accounts (traceable with evidence) on 31st March, 2023 and 11th April, 2023 among others should be returned within 48hours or risk jail term.
“While the Chairman may have chosen the path of dignity and not engage in his ‘gorilla battle’ or risk his life like he said, important evidence of transfer have been kept and can be prosecuted through legal means from anywhere in the world.
“While the Chairman shall not pursue the threat to life and defamation charges at this point to allow him an opportunity to refund first, Rotimi Makinde should not believe that he will get away with these crimes.
“This is not a legal battle between individuals but among our company, him and the proxies.
“While he will not get away with defamation, we are offering him an opportunity to make amends in order to repair his fraudulent charges first.
“His political stature and affiliation to the ruling power will not stop him from jail when the facts are presented before a court of competent jurisdiction.”
The statement concluded that a follow-up statement that “will distinctly explain the details of the transactions” will be released in due time.
Efforts by our reporter to get the reaction of Hon. Makinde proved futile as his MTN line was unavailable as at the time of filing this report.