Court Orders EFCC, DSS To Arrest Diezani Within 72 Hours

A Federal High Court in Abuja has ordered the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Department of State Services (DSS) and other security agencies to arrest Diezani Alison-Madueke, the former minister of petroleum, within 72 hours.

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According to The Cable, the order was issued by Justice Valentine Ashi based on a motion filed by the counsel to the EFCC, Msuur Denga.

Denga had earlier prayed the court to issue a warrant for the former minister’s arrest to enable the anti-graft agency arraign her in court.

The EFCC investigated the former minister along with Jide Omokore, a former Chairman, Atlantic Energy Drilling Company, following a petition dated October 2, 2013, from Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders, CACOL, bordering on money laundering and official corruption.

EFCC said in a statement that investigations into the petition revealed that Mrs Alison-Madueke as supervising minister of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, was found to have engaged in illicit and monumental fraudulent dealings in oil transactions, which she entered into on behalf of the Federal Government.

Mrs Alison-Madueke and Mr Omokore are also alleged to have accepted and given gifts in properties located at Penthouse 22, Block B, Admiralty Estate, Ikoyi, and Penthouse 21, Building 5, Block C, Banana Island, Lagos.

They are to be arraigned on February 25, 2019 on a five-count charge for the offences, which are contrary to Sections 26(1) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.

When the matter came up on Monday the Commission however filed application for warrant of arrest, condition precedent for Mrs Alison-Madueke’s extradition protocol to bring her back home to face trail.

The prosecution told the court that Mrs Alison-Madueke, who is currently in the United Kingdom, jetted out of the country while investigations into the alleged fraudulent acts were ongoing.

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The court today, granted the ex parte motion, and ordered the security agencies to provide Mrs Alison-Madueke within 72 hours, for her to face the charge preferred against her.

“The Inspector General of Police, the Chairman of the EFCC, the Attorney General, the Department of State Services, are hereby ordered in the name of the President, Federal Republic of Nigeria to apprehend and arrest the first defendant and produce her before this court for further directives within 72 hours,” the judge held.

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