By Soni Daniel, Abuja
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission said on Monday that the former Petroleum Minister, Diezani Alison Madueke, is not being tried in the United Kingdom, as being speculated.
The chairman of the EFCC, Mr. Ibrahim Magu, who made the clarification at the news conference to mark his three years in offfice, said that no corruption case had been pressed against the former minister in the United Kingdom and that Nigeria was desirous of extradicting her to face trial at home.
“She is not currently being tried for anything in the UK. There is no prosecution of Diezani going on in the UK. We cannot wait indefinitely for the UK. That is why we want to initiate her extradition and trial in Nigeria,” Magu told journalists in his office.
Turning to the scam on the OML 245, otherwise known as Malabu Oil, Magu disclosed that in an effort to nail the perpetrators of the scam, some Italian prosecutors would be arriving Nigeria very soon to compare notes with the EFCC on the matter, adding that the high profiled suspects in the controversy fraud would face the law.
Magu said, “We are working assiduously to get Malabu trial to a conclusion. For this reason, Italian prosecutors are being awaited next week.”
The chairman also announced the resolve of the agency to go after top Nigerian contractors who collected huge sums of money from the government and its agency for key projects and services but abandoned those projects and disappeared into thin air.
Magu also announced that the commission was on the trail of top Nigerians who looted public treasury to acquire choice property in Dubai and other world capitals, and were desperately trying to dispose of such property so as to evade arrest, prosecution and forfeiture by the EFCC.
“We are going after top Nigerians trying to sell their property in Dubai to evade detection, confiscation and prosecution. We are in touch with Dubai authorities. Those countries are willing to work with us and stop corruption,” he said.
Asked about how he felt not being confirmed as substantive Chairman of the anti-corruption agency after three years, Magu said that he was not perturbed over the situation as long as he was able remain focused and fight corruption and save Nigeria.
“Acting capacity does not hinder me from performing. I’m focused in getting the job done rather than lobbying to be confirmed as chairman. I have worked here for three years and nobody can erase that record. I am not worried about non-confirmation,” Magu boasted.