Dezani must face justice in the UK-Court
London, Nov 1, 2017 (AltAfrika)-A Federal High Court in Lagos, Nigeria says a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Allison-Madueke, must first face justice in the United Kingdom (UK) rather than be extradited home to answer questions in a N500 million criminal charge.
In his ruling on Wednesday, Justice Mohammed Aikawa held that the application by the ex-petroleum minister was not only a misuse of court processes, but a deliberate attempt to evade justice in the UK.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had arraigned a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Dele Belgore and a former Minister of National Planning, Prof. Abubakar Suleiman, on a five count charge bordering on N500 million fraud.
In the ruling Justice Aikawa said “This is not the proper time to join the applicant as a defendant.
The applicant has aroused my curiosity as to why she waited this long before coming up with the application for joinder.
The court lacks the power to interfere with the powers of the AGF. The application for joinder is lacking in merit and same is hereby dismissed.”
The former petroleum resources minister had on Oct. 6, through her lawyer, Mr Onyechi Ikpeazu (SAN), urged the court to compel the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) to extradite her to Nigeria from the United Kingdom to defend the charges against her.
On Oct. 30, defence and prosecuting counsels had argued their various motions before the court, both in support and against the joinder of Allison Madueke.
The judge adjourned the case until Nov. 13 and November 14 for the continuation of trial.