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Malabu oil scam: We did not drop charges against Ex AGF, Adoke, EFCC insists

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THE Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC), says it has not dropped charges against Mohammed Adoke, a former Attorney General of the Federation(AGF) and Minister of Justice over his involvement in the Malabu-oil scam.

Dele Oyewale, the EFCC’s spokesperson  stated this in a statement on Friday following media reports that the Commission has dropped charges against the former AGF.

According to the statement, Adoke is still standing trial before two courts in the country.

“The EFCC wishes to make it abundantly clear that, Mr. Adoke is standing trial in two separate courts: Federal High Court, Abuja before Justice Inyang Ekwo in Suit Number: FHC/ABJ/CR/39/2017 and FCT High Court, Gwagwalada before Justice Idris Kutigi in Suit Number: FCT/CR/151/2020,” Oyewale wrote.

According to the statement, Adoke was re-arraigned alongside a businessman, Aliyu Abubakar on seven-count charges of money laundering.

The Commission stated that the re-arraignment was occasioned by the transfer of the case from Justice Binta Nyako to Justice Inyang Ekwo.

The anti-graft agency further noted that Adoke is still facing a separate 42-count charge bordering on the Malabu oil scam before Justice Kutigi.

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However, EFCC noted that there is another subsisting case involving Malabu Oil & Gas Limited, Aliyu Abubakar, and five companies allegedly involved in money laundering charges before Justice Ekwo.

The statement read that the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CR/268/2016 was filed against the accused on Wednesday, July 1, 2020.

It urged media to ignore the International Criminal Police Organisation’s (Interpol) removal of Adeoke’s name from “Wanted Persons’ List”.

The removal according to the Commission, was because the ex AGF has been arrested and is already facing charges in Nigeria.

“A suspect cannot be on a “Wanted Persons’ List” and be facing trial in court at the same time,” the Commission wrote.

The ICIR reported that Adoke was arrested in December 2019 by the Interpol immediately his flight from Dubai, United Arab Emirate (UAE) landed at Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja.

He was later handed over to the Economic Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

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Adoke is facing prosecution over his involvement in the controversial Malabu oil deal. He is being accused of money laundering, abuse of office by the EFCC for granting Oil Prospective License (OPL) 245 to Shell and ENI.

He went on exile shortly after the 2015 general election while the Federal High Court, Abuja dismissed his case based on argument from his counsel, Ozekhome that he was arrested unduly.

Adoke has always argued that whatever action he took while in office was taken based on a presidential directive, thus, cannot be prosecuted.

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Lukman Abolade is an Investigative reporter with The ICIR. Reach out to him via labolade@icirnigeria.org, on twitter @AboladeLAA and FB @Correction94

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