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Malabu Oil scam: Malami insists Adoke must be prosecuted

Malabu Oil scam: Malami insists Adoke must be prosecuted

- Minister of justice Abubakar Malami has reacted to a suit filed by ex-AGF Mohammed Adoke against his involvement in the alleged $1.1 billion Malabu oil scam

- Malami urged the Abuja Federal High Court to dismiss the suit challenging the competence of the charges filed against Adoke over his alleged involvement in the scam

- He said said it was a civil suit and can not be used to stop a criminal trial that had been instituted

Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) Abubakar Malami insisted that ex-AGF Mohammed Adoke and others involved in the alleged $1.1 billion Malabu oil scam should subject themselves to the Abuja Federal High Court’s jurisdiction.

The Nation reports that Malami said in his papers that the charges which its validity Adoke was challenging were five counts involving the fraudulent transfer of billions of dollars derived from the Oil Processing Licence 245 deal.

Malami, through the permanent secretary and the solicitor-general of the federation of the federal ministry of justice Dayo Apata filed in response to the suit, a notice of preliminary objection challenging the competence of the suit and the court’s jurisdiction to hear it.

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He also filed a counter-affidavit challenging the merit of the case.

Malami contended in his notice of preliminary objection that the suit was not only competent but that a civil suit such as Adoke’s could not be used to stop a criminal trial that had been instituted.

The four grounds of Malami’s preliminary objection to the suit read: ''The plaintiff has not disclosed any cause of action in the suit. The civil suit cannot be used to stop criminal prosecution already initiated.

“That the plaintiff’s suit as constituted is incompetent. That this honourable court lacks jurisdiction to hear and determine the plaintiff’s suit.”

Thomas Etah of the federal ministry of justice who deposed to the AGF’s counter-affidavit, stated that Adoke’s suit did not disclose any dispute between the former AGF and his successor, since it was EFCC that investigated the case and found it worthy to institute the charges.

Malami described Adoke’s suit as an abuse of court process, as he insisted that contrary to the former AGF’s claim in the suit, the charges initiated against him by the EFCC had nothing to do with “actions authorised by the President”.

The counter-affidavit read in part: ''That from the documents and the processes, the plaintiff did not show any dispute between him and the defendant.

''That the plaintiff’s suit does not disclose any cause of action. That there are allegations of commission of financial crime by the plaintiff.

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''That the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has investigated the activities relating to the said money and has come to the conclusion that a prima facie case has been established against the plaintiff.

''That the EFCC has drafted and filed a five-count charge against the plaintiff. A copy of the charge sheet dated January 30, 2017, the verifying affidavit dated March 2, 2017 together with the proof of evidence and dated March 2, 2017, all of which were filed on March 2, 2017, is hereby attached and numbered as Exhibit HAGF.

''That the charges filed against the plaintiff does not relate to actions authorised by the president to be carried out by the plaintiff. That the plaintiff’s suit is an abuse of court process.''

Meanwhiel, had reported that Itse Sagay called on President Buhari to probe Malami over his role in the controversial reinstatement of a former chairman of the presidential task team on pension reforms, Abdulrasheed Maina.

The chairman of the presidential advisory committee against corruption, made the statement on Tuesday, January 9.

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