The embattled Senior Advocate of Nigeria Rickey Tarfa admitted to giving Justice Mohammed Yunusa N225,000 today in an affidavit filed at the Federal High Court in Lagos. The money, Mr. Tarfa claims, was for funeral costs of Mr. Yunusa’s father-in-law.
According to the affidavit, “[Mr. Tarfa] did not on 7th January, 2014 bribe Honourable Justice M.N. Yunusa with the sum of N225,000 or any other sum at all.” It continued by stating that, “it was common knowledge in the legal circles that Honourable Justice M.N. Yunusa lost his father-in-law, Alhaji Audi Garba Damasa on the 28th December, 2013 in Maiduguri and travelled there to attend to the funeral rites.”
SaharaReporters released call records showing that Mr. Tarfa and Mr. Yunusa repeatedly had phone and SMS contact in 2015, when the bribe was allegedly made. During the time of the bribe Mr. Yunusa was overseeing legal cases being defended by Mr. Tarfa, all of which he won.
SaharaReporters has also reported that lawyers defending cases from Mr. Tarfa’s firm also won all their cases during the same time period, according to information obtained by our correspondent.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), which is charging Mr. Tarfa, stated in its counter-affidavit that “based on investigations and data analysis of [Mr. Tarfa’s] mobile phones startling revelations about secret, unhealthy communications between the Applicant and judicial officers emerged.”
The EFCC arraigned Mr. Tarfa before the High Court in Lagos last week for obstructing them from arresting Gnanhooue Sourou and Nazaire Odeste, who of his clients.