The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has denied throwing his weight behind Vice President Yemi Osinbajo over N90 billion fraud allegations.
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Naija News reports that Timi Frank, a former chieftain of the APC, had accused Osinbajo of collecting N90 billion from the Federal Inland Revenue (FIRS) to fund the 2019 election.
But speaking to newsmen on Friday after a meeting with the Vice President, CAN National President, Rev Supo Ayokunle, described the allegations as baseless.
According to the CAN leader, the church and all Nigerians are proud of the Vice President and would continue to pray for him.
His added, “He has cleared the air that the allegation is baseless and there is no truth in it and that some people are plotting against him and he was ready to provide himself to be cleared.
“If there is an allegation there must be evidence and that it can never happen and will never happen. The church and the entire country will fight for him.”
This statement did not go down well with Timi Frank, who accused CAN President, Ayokunle, of denigrating Christians in Nigeria.
The former APC Chieftain stated that Ayokunle should have heard from both sides before taking a stand in the N90 billion saga.
Some Nigerians also condemned the visit and CAN leader’s comment that seemed to exonerate Osinbajo.
Reacting in a statement on Sunday, Pastor Adebayo Oladeji, spokesman to CAN President, Rev Supo Ayokunle, said Osinbajo described the allegation as “baseless and rubbish”.
It said: “CAN can never endorse corruption and has never exonerated anyone accused of corruption because we are not a court of law. Anyone accused of corruption has to prove his or her innocence with documentary evidence before a court of competent jurisdiction as we all know before his or her innocence can be upheld.
“CAN leadership visited the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo last Friday to hear his side of the story instead of rushing to the press either to condemn him or throw our weight behind him. This we believe, there is no law that is against our action.
“After we had interacted with him and he said that the allegation was baseless and should be treated as rubbish, and not only that, he said that he was going to pursue the matter legally to prove his innocence, we then assured him that if he is proved innocent, then we throw our weight behind him. We thereafter prayed for him and our nation Nigeria. We urged him to continue to serve the nation with clean hands.
“The leadership of CAN has never endorsed corruption. In our earlier visits to President Muhammadu Buhari, we had praised him for fighting war against corruption but urged him to make it comprehensive, sparing no one irrespective of political affiliation.”
“We were there to pray for him and also to let him tell us about the allegations against him whether true or false and he has cleared the air that there was no iota of truth in what some people decided to bring out against him.
“And he was ready to prove himself (innocent) and to go all out with them. If there is an allegation, there must be evidence to prove it. Therefore, he said we should see it as rubbish. It can never happen with him and it has never happened.
“If the allegation was not true and the people who alleged cannot prove it, then, you know that the Church will be very proud of him, and will continue to be proud (of him) and we are praying for him and we are also saying that nobody should toy with the innocent that are faithfully serving us in the nation for whatever reason, the whole of Nigerians we rise together to fight such people,” CAN added.