By Soni Daniel, Northern Region Editor
ONE day after the Federal Government filed charges against him and eight others, former Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Mohammed Adoke, has said he acted in the overall interest of Nigeria by signing the controversial deal.
He said he signed the deal to save Nigeria from a protracted legal tussle and fine of $2 billion, stressing that he was ready to defend himself on the matter.
The former minister said he came into the deal because of his position as the AGF and did not derive any pecuniary benefit.
Adoke defended everything he did leading to the settlement of the disputes among the parties, saying he committed no wrong in the process.
He also said he was ready to return to Nigeria to defend himself in court any time he was called upon to do so.
In a letter he sent to Vanguard last night, Adoke said: “My attention has been drawn to the charges filed by the EFCC against me and other named individuals and companies in respect of OPL 245 Settlement Agreement involving Malabu Oil & Gas Limited and Shell Nigeria Ultra Deep Limited.
“The charge of aiding the commission of money laundering offences preferred against me has finally confirmed the orchestrated plans to bring me to public disrepute in order to satisfy the whims and caprices of some powerful interests on revenge mission.
“I wish to reiterate that I acted within the actual and ostensible authority of the office I occupied to broker a settlement between Malabu Oil & Gas Limited and Shell Nigeria Ultra Deep Limited in order to ward off the over US$2 billion liability in damages for breach of contract which the country would have been exposed to in the likely event of the success of Shell Nigeria Ultra Deep Limited’s claim before the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID).”