Criminal investigations ongoing in Malabu oil deal —AGF

The Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr Abubakar Malami, on Thursday, disclosed that the controversial Malabu Oil deal has been a hard nut to crack with many complexities, saying that criminal investigations were still ongoing on the matter.

The minister dropped the hint during the investigative hearing organised by the House of Representatives ad hoc committee on alleged corruption, malpractices and breach of due process in the award of OPL 245.

To crack the hard nut, he said that, requests had been made internationally for Mutual Legal Assistance from the United States, Italy and the United Kingdom in the Malabu case.

The minister also told the House panel that investigation was still ongoing and no conclusion was certain, saying that, “the field has not been covered. Investigation is ongoing nationally and internationally and what I say might alter the conclusion of the case.”

According to him, “I took steps to write to the international agencies and governments to consolidate on the available information,” warning that “We have to move with caution by allowing representations to be made.”

The Chairman of the panel, Honourable Razak Atunwa, while addressing the gathering said that “This is a highly controversial allocation of perhaps, the biggest oil bloc in Africa.”

According to him, “There is a lot at stake on this issue and the credibility and revenue for this country is at stake.

“However complex the situation may be, the law is able to deal with it. The House is also able to make enquiries and make recommendation on the matter,” the lawmaker stated.

However, Mohammed Abacha and Otunba Oyewole Fasawe, who are shareholders in Malabu withdrew their earlier submission to the committee and promised a detailed presentation.

Malabu’s lawyer, Mr Abdullahi Haruna, who spoke for Mohammed Abacha and Otunba Oyewole Fasawe, said they had submitted documents to the seventh House, hence, the need for more comprehensive presentation to the committee.