Minutes after the Supreme Court cleared him of corruption conviction, former Deputy National Chairman (South) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Olabode Ibiyinka George, on Friday, thanked God for vindicating him.
He was jailed with five others on October 26, 2009 by Justice Joseph Olubunmi Oyewole of a Lagos High Court over allegation of N85 billion fraud at the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA).
But the Supreme Court on Friday ruled that George was wrongfully convicted.
In a statement entitled ‘Glory to God Almighty’ after the judgement, George said: “I have seen the goodness of the Lord today. The Almighty God in his infinite mercy and the sanctity of his wisdom has reconfirmed the true tenet of the eternal and abiding justice: The innocent may fall, the innocent may stumble, but he will never suffer in vain.
“Truth may live a difficult life. But it will always prevail.
“I am now out of the darkness and shadows of evil. The light of God has shined upon me. I now give praise to the good Lord for his abundant mercy and grace. I thank my dear wife Roli for believing in me and staying the course through thick and thin. I extend my heartfelt appreciation to the leader of our Party, President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan and every member of our great party from the ward level to the highest organ.
“Today, the truth has prevailed. The good Lord has vindicated me. But I hold no grudge, no grievances against any man. I am strengthened in the firmness of the integrity of our Judiciary. I am proud that this nation still has men and women who will never serve the hour to mangle the truth, who will stand for the purity of justice no matter the transient temptings of the moment. There is indeed an abiding moral here: we must never abandon our convictions. We must never surrender our highest principles. We must never serve the hour to distort the truth. The road may be rough. Our challenges may be harsh and bruising. But we must trudge along. We must be constantly guided in the sanctity of the goodness of the Lord.
“Today, I am born anew. Light has now prevailed over darkness. The crucibles of yesterday now remain in the past. I am confronted with a new beginning. My focus, my vision, the total predication of my being is again anchored on service to our dear nation. I have no vaulting ambition. I have no giant dreams or aspirations.
“My fixity is our nation. We must recommit ourselves to selfless service. We must recommit ourselves to rebuilding the broken places. We must eschew bitterness and malignity. We must transcend the narrow podium of ethnicity and tribal prejudice. We must shun the invidious partisan venom that will distort the truth merely to destroy a perceived opponent.
“This nation is greater than all of us. Let us protect it. Let us serve it with all our hearts and with the fear of the Lord.
“I remain a humble patriot without malice. I remain a mariner with a story to tell. I have witnessed the goodness of the Lord”.