Politics

MALABU SCANDAL: EFCC unable to proceed with trial because key defendants missing

EFCC arrests Turaki

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has revealed that the absence of key persons of interest tied to the Malabu Oil scandal, was frustrating the commencement of the trial.

Mohammed Adoke, former Attorney-General of the Federation and ,Minister of Justice, and Dan Etete, former Minister of Petroleum, are among the persons to be arraigned by the EFCC over the $1.3 billion deal involving Shell, ENI and Malabu Oil and Gas Ltd.

Others are Aliyu Abubakar, an oil mogul, and six firms: Malabu Oil & Gas Ltd, Rocky Top Resource Ltd, Imperial Union Ltd, Novel Properties and Development Company Ltd, Group Construction Ltd and MegaTech Engineering Ltd.

EFCC’s lawyer, Johnson Ojogbane, Thursday requested that John Tsoho, a judge of the Federal High Court, Abuja, adjourn their arraignment till February 15, 2018.

Read also: Nigerian govt claims it has recovered $85m from U.K on scandalous Malabu oil deal

Ojogbane told the court, “My lord, my situation has not improved since the last time. The process of securing the defendants to appear before this court has been very cumbersome but it is ongoing. We are hoping that very soon the process will be completed.

“In the circumstance, I am asking for further date to enable us complete the process so that we can have the defendants in court for arraignment.”

The Federal Government had previously told the court that it was working on the extradition of Adoke and Etete to face trial.

Adoke who left the country in 2015, has refused to return, alleging that there was a plot to humiliate and assassinate him because of the powerful persons he offended when he was attorney-general from 2010 to 2015.

This development is coming same day that Abubakar Malami, Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, revealed that the Federal Government had received $85 million from the United Kingdom as part of illicit proceeds from the scandal.

 

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