Nigeria’s anti-graft agency stated that it discovered at least $615 million of reportedly illegally obtained cash and properties to the West Africa nation’s former oil minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke.
Adding to the “boxes of gold, silver and diamond jewelry, worth several million pounds” discovered at her home, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission distinguished more than a dozen buildings across the country worth more than $500 million which is owned by the former minister, the agency disclosed this in a statement on their website on Wednesday.
According to the statement, they have acquired strong evidence and they will ask federal courts to rule that the assets be surrendered to the government.
Alison-Madueke has earlier denied any corruption and calls to her mobile phone for comments were ignored. Oscar Onwudiwe, a lawyer representing Alison-Madueke, did not answer four calls to his mobile phone or replied to a text message asking for their comments on the issue.
Alison-Madueke was appointed by former Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan in 2011. She was an ex-president of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and served as national oil minister for five years up until her part was defeated in the 2015 elections. She was apprehended in London in the same year on suspicion of bribery and money laundering and was later freed on bail, a representative for the Nigerian government said.
Justice Chuka Obiozor of the Federal High Court in Lagos, has ordained on August 7 for Alison-Madueke to surrender a $38 million property in the Banana Island district, one of the richest areas of the city, stating that it was illegally obtained.
US prosecutors are also trying to retrieve $144 million of assets, including earnings from the sale of a luxury condominium in Manhattan, New York, which they asserted were bought with the profits of bribes paid for Nigerian oil contracts when Alison-Madueke was minister.