Cancer-stricken and bereft of the radiance with which she was once synonymous, but Nigeria’s immediate past Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, remains defiant in denial, saying she did not use her position to steal Nigeria’s money.
She declared this ‘non-yam-eating’ stance of hers recently during an interview with Ovation and TheBoss Magazine publisher, Dele Momodu, in her London abode.
While answering corruption-related questions during she interview, she was quoted by Momodu saying, “If there is one issue I must pursue in this world it is the biggest lie of this money. How can $20billion disappear just like that? Where did it disappear to? Is it possible that such an amount would not be traceable? This is more painful coming from someone I considered a good friend who should appreciate the gravity of such allegation. I challenge anyone to come forward with facts showing that I stole government or public money. I’ve never stolen Nigeria’s money…”
Alison-Madueke was recently arrested by officials of the National Crime Agency, United Kingdom over suspected money laundering activities.
In June 2008, Alison-Madueke was subject to a Senate probe after it emerged that as Transport Minister she had paid N30.9bn ($263m) to contractors between December 26 and 31, 2007. She is said to be worth over N1bn.
She is also widely accused of reckless spending of government funds.
In October 2009, the Nigeria Senate indicted her and recommended prosecution for the alleged transfer of N1.2bn into the private account of a toll company without due process and in breach of concession agreement.
However, the allegations have never been taken to law, and the former minister had maintained innocence.
Misunderstood, wrongly accused or maybe even summarily tried and convicted by the social and/or print media, VN believes that it’s only sensible to allow a due process of adjudication to take full course and bore unto us a tenable version of truth or truths…
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