EFCC Goes After Diezani’s N7.1bn Properties in Dubai

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has stumbled on two mansions in Dubai allegedly belonging to a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke.
The anti-graft body, it was gathered, was making efforts to file necessary papers for forfeiture of the said properties to the Federal Government.
The properties, located at E146 Emirates Hill and J5 Emirates Hill, are said to be worth 74,000,000 dirham (N7.1bn).
Emirates Hill, which has been described as the Beverly Hills of the United Arab Emirates, is home to some of the richest men in the world including billionaire Chairman of the Stallion Group, Sunil Vaswani.
Others, who are Diezani’s neighbours, include the immediate past Prime Minister of Pakistan, Nawaz Sharif; a former President of Pakistan, Asif Ali Zardari; and Robert Mugabe junior, the son of the President of Zimbabwe and one of Africa’s longest serving leaders, President, Robert Mugabe.
A source within the EFCC said that the anti-graft agency was already applying for the forfeiture of the properties through the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation.
If the commission is able to clear all legal hurdles and ensure the final forfeiture of the property, it would bring the total amount of cash and assets finally recovered from Diezani to $200m (N70bn).
The agency said it would exploit the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty the Federal Government had recently signed with the government of the UAE.
The agreements, signed by President Muhammadu Buhari, are Agreement on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters, Agreement on Mutual Legal Assistance in Civil and Commercial Matters, Agreement on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons and an Extradition Treaty.
The source stated, “We have informed the UAE authorities that from our investigation, we believe Diezani bought the properties with the proceeds of crime. The whole process is still ongoing but with the MLAT, signed by President Buhari, it has made work a lot easier for us.”
The source explained that before the Federal Government signed the treaty, the UAE law prevented foreign officials from having access to properties in the country without the express permission of its owner.
He added that with the new treaty, the UAE authorities were more cooperative and would readily give information of properties from their Land Registry System.

Author: News Editor

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