Politics

MALABU OIL DEAL: It’s not true! No one indicted me over any $1.3bn bribe –Jonathan

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Former President Goodluck Jonathan has suggested that mischief makers must be behind tales that he allegedly received a bribe in the $1.3billion Malabu oil deal.

He vehemently denied on Tuesday any improper conduct, claiming that no International Oil Companies (IOCs), or law enforcement body anywhere in the world, had indicted or charged him for collecting any bribe.

The former president’s reaction was contained in a statement made through his Media Adviser, Ikechukwu Eze in Abuja, wherein he clarified that the transactions for the $1.3bn oil deal which took place between oil giants ENI and Royal Dutch Shell existed before his coming into power as Nigeria’s President on May 6, 2010.

The statement read in part, “We wish to make it clear that former President Jonathan was not accused, indicted or charged for corruptly collecting any money as kickbacks or bribes from ENI by the Italian authorities or any other law enforcement body the world over.

“We make bold to point out that the former President never sent any Abubakar Aliyu, as the innuendoes in the false report suggest, to ENI, the IOCs or any indigenous operator to seek favour or collect any gratification on his behalf.”

Jonathan’s reaction came against the back drop of news report accusing him of sending the Chairman of AA Oil, Abubakar Aliyu, to collect bribe in the $1.3bn Malabu oil deal.

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had not long ago, filed a seven-count charge against the immediate past Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Mohammed Adoke (SAN), Dan Etete, a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Aliyu Abubakar, a businessman and six others over their alleged role in the Malabu oil deal.

The Malabu oil scam refers to the billions of dollars which Shell and ENI paid into a Federal Government account, for OPL 245, and which investigators believe found their way into private pockets.

The anti-graft agency, EFCC, says it is convinced that the public officers listed in the matter have a case to answer. However, prosecution of the alleged oil scam has been on and off for over four years.

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Ebere Ndukwu

Ebere is a lover of investigative journalism, always seeking to unearth the hidden.