A former governor of Rivers State and Nigeria’s Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi, on Tuesday said he once rejected N1 billion bribe when he served as governor of the oil rich state.
Mr. Amaechi, who spoke in Lagos at a forum convened to discuss the place of social media in Nigeria’s political and socio-economic development, said the social media contributed to the erroneous perception Nigerians have about him.
The minister, who said he rejected the bribe because of his principled stance on corruption, said Nigeria needed to go back to its value system.
“My first confrontation with bribe was with a big contractor in Rivers State. After awarding the contract, he brought a billion naira. I screamed.
“I asked, ‘where did you get the money?’ and he said from what he got (from the contract) and I said ‘look, that means you overquoted the contract’.
“I said ‘the only reason you are giving me N1 billion was because if the contract was N32 billion, you made it N37 billion’.
“I have been special assistant to the governor for two years; speaker, eight years; governor, eight years; minister nearly two years…that’s nearly twenty years.
“So I know Nigerian politics well. Very, very well,” he said.