Posted by Transport & Business Express | 13 August 2012 | 4,365 times
Founding Directors of Newswatch magazine have denied receiving 50 million naira each from controversial businessman, Barrister Jimoh Ibrahim, so as to allow him assume full control of the famous weekly magazine.
“We were always sure he will resort to blackmail,” one of the Newswatch directors told Transport & Business Express over the weekend. “No, he didn’t pay us to take over the company. When we retired, the company paid us our retirement benefits in accordance with what the board approved for us in 2002. How does retirement benefits become paying us off? We will respond to him if makes unfounded allegations,” the Newswatch director added.
The US-based SaharaReporters had on Saturday quoted a source close to Barrister Ibrahim as claiming that “Ray Ekpu, Agbese and the rest of them played into Chief’s hands when they accepted 50 million naira each from him as gifts in order to pave the way for him to assume control.” According to the source, “Chief Ibrahim feels that, after pocketing his huge gifts, the same directors cannot come back now to question how he wants to run a business in which he acquired controlling shares.”
Jimoh Ibrahim had last Wednesday openly cursed Newswatch directors for opposing his unilateral decision to suspend the operations of the magazine. He delivered the curse at his Energy House office in Lagos during a ceremony to celebrate the 19th year anniversary of his company, Global Fleet.
Barrister Ibrahim, who last year bought 51 per cent of the Newswatch shares, had announced the suspension of operations on August 7. His action was however faulted by the founding directors of the magazine, who accused him of having yet to pay the agreed 510 million naira for the purchased shares.
*Photo shows Jimoh Ibrahim
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