A Westminster Magistrates’ Court in the United Kingdom has restricted the free movement of a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke over an alleged £100,000 bribery offence.
News About Nigeria gathered that the district judge, Michael Snow, who granted Alison-Madueke a £70,000 bail also imposed other terms on her, including an 11 pm to 6 am curfew, an electronic tag to be worn by her at all times.
Alison-Madueke had through her attorney, Mark Bowen, informed the court that she would plead not guilty.
Her next court appearance will be on October 30 at Southwark Crown Court, which deals with serious criminal cases.
It was also gathered that, in August, the UK’s National Crime Agency said it suspected that Alison-Madueke had accepted bribes in return for awarding multi-million-pound oil and gas contracts.
Also, Diezani who was the minister of petroleum resources from 2010 to 2015 during the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan, left Nigeria for the UK few months before Jonathan handed to former president Muhammadu Buhari.
Following, Alison-Madueke’s departure from Nigeria, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, alleged that she stole $2.5bn from the Nigerian government while she was a minister.
However, efforts by the EFCC to arraign her have been unsuccessful as she has not returned to Nigeria since 2015.
Following the UK Court’s order on the former minister, the EFCC revealed that it had commenced an extradition process to bring Diezani back to Nigeria to face trial.
This development was disclosed by the spokesperson for the EFCC, Dele Oyewale who said, “The EFCC welcomes, with keen interest, the arraignment of former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke, at the Westminister’s Court in London, United Kingdom, following alleged bribery allegations.
“Although the charges preferred against her at the London court, are diametrically different from the 13 counts, bordering on money laundering that the EFCC has raised against her, it is instructive to note that criminality is criminality, irrespective of jurisdictional differences. No crime can go unpunished. The money laundering charges for which Madueke is answerable to the EFCC, cover jurisdictions in Dubai, the United Kingdom, the United States of America and Nigeria.
“To bring the former Minister to trial in Nigeria, an arrest warrant has been obtained and extradition proceedings have been initiated. The commission is on course on her trial. She will soon have her day in our courts.”