Monday, December 3, 2018
Court grants EFCC permission to prosecute Diezani
A federal capital territory (FCT) high court, Apo, has granted the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) leave to arraign Diezani Alison-Madueke, former petroleum minister, and Olajide Omokore, a former chairman of Atlantic Energy Drilling company, on February 25.
Alison-Madueke and Omokore are to be arraigned on five counts bordering on conspiracy and illegal act of accepting and giving gratifications.
The trial judge, Valentine Ashi, granted the EFCC leave, after the prosecution counsel, Faruk Abdullahi, told the court that while investigations were ongoing, the former minister left the country and is currently in the UK.
Ashi also ordered the EFCC to put its house in order.
The suspects are to be arraigned for allegedly accepting and giving a gift of properties described as penthouse 22, Block B, Admiralty Estate, Ikoyi, and penthouse 21, building 5, block C, Banana Island, Lagos.
The EFCC said the alleged offence contravened the provisions of sections 26(1) and 17 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.
The prosecutor, Faruk Abdullahi, told the court that while investigations were ongoing, the former minister left the country and is currently in the United Kingdom.
He also said that upon invitation by the EFCC, Alison-Madueke refused to honour the invitation. He said there is a process in place to ensure she comes back to face trial.
The counsel to the second defendant, Tayo Adeniyo, told the court that his client was not served with the charges and his client was ready to clear his name.
On November 11, the EFCC confirmed that the process to bring back Alison-Madueke from the United Kingdom had begun.
Alison-Madueke, who is being investigated in the UK, had urged the federal government to have her repatriated to Nigeria to face corruption charges against her.