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Published On: Sat, Jun 18th, 2016

Sex Scandal: Indicted Rep Threatens to Sue US Govt for Cancelling His Visa

LAGOS JUNE 18TH (URHOBOTODAY)-One of the member of House of Representative accused of attempted rape and soliciting for sex while in official duty in United States, Hon Mark Gbillah representing All Progressive Congress, (APC) Benue state has threatened to institute legal actions against the US Government, the Ambassador and the Marriot Hotel Brand, among others for damages for withdrawing his visa even when the allegation against him and his colleagues were yet to be proved
Gbillah expressed surprise that within some hours of bringing the matter to the attention of the House, the US Government had gone ahead to cancel their visas.
The affected legislators, according to report, include: Mohammed Garba Gololo (APC, Bauchi), Samuel Ikon (PDP, Akwa Ibom) and Mark Gbillah (APC, Benue). They have all denied the allegations.
The legislators were accused of attempted rape and soliciting for sex from prostitutes while on a trip to the United States. The three representatives were among 10 lawmakers invited by the US Government for the programme held between April 7 and 13, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio.
Part of Gbillah’s letter, which was dated June 16, read, “Without conclusive evidence of any sort or contact with any of the accused individuals, the US State Department and US Embassy in Nigeria have less than six days after your letter to the Speaker, gone ahead to revoke the US visas of the accused individuals based on hearsay from the employees of the hotel in Cleveland.
“Affected individuals received correspondence from the US Embassy on Wednesday, June 15, 2016, indicating the denial of their US visas and requesting that they bring their passports with the current US visa to the Embassy.”
The letter was copied to Dogara, the US Secretary of State, Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Cleveland Council of World Affairs, and the President and Chief Executive Officer, Marriott International.
On his part, Ikon claimed that the allegation levelled against him was not only untrue but also a case of mistaken identity.
He stated, “My attention has been drawn to the publication, alleging an act of impropriety against me by the US Mission in Nigeria.
“I wish to state unequivocally that this is false and definitely not me.
“This, to me, is a case of mistaken identity and I have already instituted measures both legally and diplomatically to clear my name and the institution I represent.
Meanwhile, Hon. Gololo had through BBC Hausa service denied the allegation calling on United States government to commence investigation into the matter to unravel the truth behind the act.
He said, “I feel bad about the report because it’s not true. U.S is an advanced country where we have camera and CCTV all over, if it were true, CCTV would have discovered it while I was in U.S. so I challenge the U.S. Government to provide full evidence.
“Some of my supporters have been calling to inform me that such allegation had been levelled against lawmakers from Gamawa in the past so I feel it’s a repetition of the same allegation to tarnish my image but I will defend myself,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara has ordered immediate investigation into the case.
The parliament announced that it had commenced investigations into allegations of improper conduct levelled against three of its members by James Entwistle, the United States Ambassador to Nigeria.
“We are in receipt of a letter from the US ambassador, alleging misconduct by some members of the National Assembly, who attended a training programme in the United States of America,” House spokesman, Abdulrazak Namdas said.
“The leadership of the house has commenced its own part of the investigation. When it is concluded, we will brief Nigerians further on this issue,” he added.
Entwistle brought the incident to the notice of the House via a letter written to Speaker, Yakubu Dogara on June 9.

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