$40m jewellery beyond Diezani’s income, EFCC insists

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Monday appealed to the Federal High Court in Lagos to order the permanent forfeiture of the 2,149 pieces of jewellery and a customised gold iPhone, valued at $40m, recovered from the Abuja home of a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke.

In an affidavit deposed to by Rufai Zaki, an investigator, the EFCC insisted that the items were beyond Diezani’s “known and provable lawful income.” Zaki recalled that Diezani was appointed the Minister of Petroleum Resources on April 12, 2010. He said findings by the EFCC showed that she started acquiring the jewellery in 2012 from one Bukola Oyewumi of Trinket Box Bespoke Jewellery at Ikeja City Mall, Alausa.

The investigator said the EFCC was in possession of the details of the UBA account through which Diezani received her salary as a minister. “The respondent did not utilise her salary or any part of her legitimate income to acquire the assets sought to be forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria,” Zaki said.

He said a “damning intelligence report” received by the EFCC led to the search of Diezani’s house at No. 10 Fredrick Chiluba Close, Asokoro, Abuja.

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