Court orders final forfeiture of N3bn assets ‘linked to Diezani’

Diezani-Alison-Madueke

A Federal High Court in Lagos has issued a final forfeiture against property worth over N3 billion linked to former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke.

Justice Abdulaziz Anka gave the order following an application filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), which claimed that Diezani paid $21,982,224 for the properties, adding that it believed that the funds were proceeds of crime.

The commission had said it traced about 56 houses to the former minister and five others. claimed that Diezani paid $21,982,224 for the properties, adding that it believed that the funds were proceeds of crime.

EFCC alleged that the $21,982,224 paid for the property was proceeds of crime.

The houses located in Lagos, Port Harcourt and Abuja, were said to have been acquired by the ex-minister between 2011 and 2013.

The houses seized included 21 mixed housing units of eight four bedroom penthouse apartment; six buildings of three bedroom apartments; two buildings of three bedrooms apartment and one building of four bedrooms apartment, all ensuite, located at 7 Thurnburn Street and 5 Raymond Street, Yaba. They were all valued at N937 million.

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There were also 16-four bedrooms terrace buildings, located at Heritage Court Estate, Omerelu Street, Diobu GRA, Port-Harcourt, River state, valued at N928 million.

Also forfeited were 13 three-bedroom with one room maid’s quarter situated at Mabushi Gardens Estate, Plot 1205, Cadastral Zone B06, Mabushi, Abuja, valued at N650 million; and six flats of three bedrooms and one boys quarter, located at Plot 808 (135) Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, Lagos, valued at N805 million.

The EFCC said, while Dieziani was serving as a minister, she allegedly paid the sum of $16,441,906 in cash for the property from the proceeds of suspected unlawful activity.

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The forfeiture is the latest of previous ones the former minister has made to the federal government.

On August 7, a federal high court in Lagos had ordered the permanent forfeiture of a $37.5m sky-scrapper on the highbrow Banana Island, Lagos, belonging to her.

The court had also ordered that the sums of $2.7 million and N84.5 million realised as rents on the property should equally be forfeited to the government.