Asset Forfeiture: Alison-Madueke’s suit against the EFCC will be heard in court on October 23

Diezani Alison-Madueke, the former Minister of Petroleum Resources, has asked a Federal High Court in Abuja to hear her case on October 23, 2023.

In the lawsuit, Alison-Madueke is challenging the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission’s (EFCC) order for the final forfeiture of her confiscated assets.

Justice Inyang Ekwo set the date after Alison-Madueke’s counsel, Benson Igbanoi, and the EFCC’s counsel regularized their processes in the action.

The EFCC intended to hold a public auction of all assets seized as proceeds of crime and ordered by courts to be permanently forfeited to the Federal Government.

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The auction of the confiscated assets, which are likely to include Alison-Madueke’s property, began on January 9.

She allegedly fled to the United Kingdom and resided there after leaving public service as the petroleum minister.

She served as petroleum minister under former President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration from 2010 to 2015.

In her petition, she asked for an extension of time to apply to the court for an order to set aside the EFCC’s public notice to conduct the public sale on her property.

She claimed that the different orders were issued without jurisdiction and that they “ought to be overturned.”
She claimed that she was not given a fair hearing during the proceedings leading up to the orders.

She further claimed that she was not served with the charge sheet and proof of evidence in any of the counts, nor with any other summons in relation to the criminal charges ongoing against her before the court.

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However, in a counter-affidavit testified to by Rufai Zaki, an EFCC detective, he urged the court to dismiss her application.

Contrary to her evidence in the affidavit in support, Zaki stated that the majority of the proceedings that led to the final confiscation of the challenged property “were action in rem, same was heard at various times and determined by this honorable court.”

According to him, the courts ordered the commission to issue a newspaper advertisement seeking parties to show cause why the abovementioned property should not be forfeited to the Federal Government before final judgments were issued.

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