Three Ondo Senators consider legal action against Dan Orbih over unfounded rice allegation

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Three Senators representing Ondo State in the National Assembly are weighing legal and other actions against the chairman of the Edo State chapter of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Chief Dan Orbih, over what they described as “an unfounded allegation that has embarrassed the people of Ondo State.”

Orbih alleged, Thursday in Benin City on a pidgin English radio programme broadcast on Independent Radio, a private broadcast station, that the Edo State government diverted over 300 bags of rice approved by the federal government for Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), to the house of an Ondo Senator.

The three Ondo State Senators in the National Assembly are, Ajayi Boroffice, Yele Omogunwa and Tayo Alasoadura, representing Ondo North; Ondo South and Ondo Central Senatorial Districts respectively.

One of the Senators said he was still “aghast and astounded by the baseless allegation” and assured that Dan Orbih will be made to produce the evidence of his claim.

“We are studying the matter and are prepared to follow it to its logical conclusion. There are things you do not play politics with. With the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act (FOI Act), we will not have any problem compelling the Edo State PDP chairman to produce the evidence he boasted about on a live radio programme,” he said.

Speaking in pidgin English, Dan Orbih said on the live radio programme: “This thing no be matter wey them take debate. Them carry this rice go give one Senator for Ondo, that one na Internally displaced person? We get record for how them take share this rice among themselves. Them carry this rice on a Sunday go one house before By-pass. On a Sunday, because make people no see wetin them dey do. We have all these records. We know the movements. We know what they were doing. I was just watching them to see whether these people get heart.”

The Senator warned that “if no proof of rice diversion as alleged by Orbih, exists, then Orbih will have us to contend it.”

He stressed: “You cannot wake up in Benin City and start hallucinating about people in Ondo State receiving rice meant for displaced people. We are disappointed in Orbih and have reasons to suspect that he may be mentally unstable as only mentally deranged people can imagine unimaginable things like the PDP fellow. Our integrity is at stake here and will not allow Dan Orbih to get away with his irresponsible attack on Ondo Senators.”

Dan Orbih has since come under fire from the Edo State government, after the radio interview.

In a petition to the state Commissioner of Police, Babatunde Kokumo,  Secretary to the Edo State Government, Osarodion Ogie Esq., asked the police boss to investigate the rice diversion allegation made by Chief Dan Orbih.

“It is instructive to note that that in making  these allegations to the general public, Orbih claimed that he had facts and records to back up his allegations. The purpose of this complaint is to formally bring these weighty and unsubstantiated allegations to your attention and to request a thorough investigation with a view to establishing the veracity or otherwise of same,” the Edo State government said.

It added that “it is  the contention of the Edo State government that Orbih should be called upon to provide evidence of the serious crimes he has accused  the Edo State government of, and to furnish your command with facts, details and proof of the allegations he made in the public domain.”

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