Delta Reps members allege blackmail by Pilot newspaper publisher, say allegations aimed at intimidation, extortion


Two members of House of Representatives, from Delta State Honorable Nicholas Mutu and his colleague Thomas Ereyitomi, have raised concerns about the Editor-in-Chief of the Nigeria Pilot Newspaper, Mr. Dennis Sami, engaging in blackmail and extortion.

The lawmakers dismissed the fabricated allegations against them as a cheap attempt to tarnish their reputation.

In a statement issued by Boma Akpotutari, Senior Special Assistant to Hon. Mutu, he claimed that Sami had been persistently sending messages and making threatening phone calls to the lawmakers over the past month.

Sami had purportedly demanded money from them and threatened to publish unsubstantiated and frivolous allegations if they failed to comply.

One of the allegations is that Mutu has been using fake school certificates throughout his tenure in the House since 1999.

“The lawmakers firmly denied the baseless and unfounded accusations, considering them a failed attempt to discredit them.

“Sami and his editor, Emmanuel Ibeleme, have been bombarding Mutu and Ereyitomi with text messages and letters, insisting that they will publish the allegations.

“The choice of words in these messages is unprofessional and resembles the tactics of notorious blackmailers.

“However, Mutu and Ereyitomi remain undeterred, asserting that all their certificates and documents are genuine and obtained from reputable institutions.

“They urge their accusers to reconsider their actions and stop spreading false allegations and falsehoods with the aim of intimidating and extorting money from them.

“The lawmakers maintain their unwavering stance against offering bribes to prevent the publication of these baseless accusations.
Mutu and Ereyitomi have already explained their side of the story to Sami, and they expect him to carry out his journalistic responsibilities rather than continuing to harass them with calls and messages.

“They emphasize the importance of the media’s role as a watchdog in society but also stress the responsibility to disseminate factual, objective, and credible information to the public.

“The persistent threats by the Nigeria Pilot’s publisher and staff to publish these unsubstantiated allegations over the past month raise doubts about their motives, integrity, and reputation.

“The lawmakers have informed their lawyers about the situation and are prepared to take legal action against this clear case of blackmail and extortion. In a letter dated May 19th, 2023, Mutu’s lawyer, M. J. Numa, SAN, addresses Sami, presenting all the relevant facts regarding the allegations. Numa advises caution, noting that these allegations have already been resolved by competent courts, including the election petitions tribunal and the Federal High Court.

” The issuing authorities of Mutu’s certificates and other relevant stakeholders, including the National Assembly, have authenticated and confirmed their authenticity.

“The Nigeria Police Force has also conducted a thorough investigation and vindicated Mutu, recommending prosecution for the originators of the false allegations.

“The lawyer emphasizes that these allegations are false, malicious, and potentially libelous, aimed at damaging Mutu’s reputation and furthering a campaign of calumny.

“He warns Sami to conduct his investigation professionally and come to the undeniable conclusion that the information being circulated is false and malicious.

“Despite providing sufficient information to enable Sami and his newspaper to draw reasonable conclusions and prevent a baseless publication, the persistent calls and messages from Sami continue.

“This behavior is seen as an attempt to intimidate Mutu into meeting his monetary demands. The lawmakers express their alarm and assert that they will not tolerate this harassment any longer. They are prepared to face Sami and take appropriate action,” he said.

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