A Federal High Court in Abuja yesterday ordered the arrest of a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke, over a pending corruption charge filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) against her.
Justice Bolaji Olajuwon issued the arrest warrant after listening to EFCC’s lawyer, Farouk Abdullah, who made an oral application to that effect.
It was the second time a court in Abuja ordered the ex-minister’s arrest since she left office in 2015 and allegedly fled to the United Kingdom (UK).
A High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), presided over by Justice Valentine Ashi (now late), had, on December 4, 2018, granted a similar order, directing the EFCC, the Nigerian Police Force, the State Security Service (SSS), and all other security agencies to arrest her within 72 hours.
The case was later moved to the Federal High Court in Abuja where the EFCC filed a 13-count of money laundering against Alison-Madueke.
Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu, to whom the case was assigned at the Federal High Court in Abuja, granted the EFCC’s request for the issuance of summons on the ex-minister on July 24, 2020.
The judge rejected EFCC’s subsequent request for the issuance of an arrest warrant against Alison-Maduake, saying the summons earlier issued was sufficient.
She requested for evidence from the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation (OAGF) in the form of a sworn affidavit detailing efforts by the state to ensure the ex-minister attend court as a result of the issuance of the summons.
Justice Ojukwu was, last year, transferred out of the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, following which the case was re-assigned to Justice Olajuwon.
Abdullah told the court yesterday that all efforts by the EFCC to get Alison-Madueke extradited were unsuccessful.
Ruling, Justice Olajuwon granted the application and adjourned the matter indefinitely pending when Alison-Madueke would be brought before the court.