Court Orders Final Forfeiture of Diezani’s 56 Houses

Justice Abdulaziz Anka of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos, on Wednesday, October 11, 2017, ordered the final forfeiture of a total of 56 houses belonging to a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke, to the Federal Government.

The properties valued at about $21,982,224 are located in Lagos and Port Harcourt, River State.

The order followed an exparte application filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

The EFCC, in an affidavit in support of the application, stated that Alison-Madueke, who is currently in the United Kingdom where she is also being investigated for money laundering, had acquired the houses between 2011 and 2013 with suspected proceeds of crime. 

The properties, the EFCC also stated in the application, include 29 terraced houses comprising eight four-bedroom penthouse apartments; six three-bedroom apartments; two three-bedroom marionettes; two twin bedroom apartments and one four-bedroom apartment all located at 7, Thurburn Street and 5, Raymond Street, Yaba, Lagos.

The properties valued at N973million were bought through a company named Chapel Properties Limited. 

Others are: 16 four-bedroom terrace at Heritage Court Estate, Omerelu Street, Diobu GRA, Port Harcourt, River States valued at N928 million, which was bought through Blue Nile Estate Limited; 13 three-bedroom apartment with one room maid’s quarter at Mabushi Gardens Estate, Plot 1205, Cadastral Zone B06, Mabushi, Abuja valued at N650 million, which was bought through Azinga Meadows Limited and six flats of three bedroom and one boys’ quarter at Plot 808 (135) Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, Lagos valued at N805 million, which was bought through Vistapoint property Development Limited.

In granting the order, Justice Anka held that none of the respondents-Diezanni, Donald Chidi Amamgbo, Chapel Properties Limited, Blue Nile Estate Limited, Azinga Meadows Limited and Vistapoint Property Development Limited- responded to the applicant’s Motion on Notice for final forfeiture served on them.

The judge further held that “I have gone through the affidavit attached to motion for final forfeiture as well as the submissions of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)’s counsel, Anselem Ozioko. The court has no option considering the incontrovertible evidence filed by the EFCC than to grant the application. The motion for final forfeiture is accordingly granted as prayed. All parties have a right of appeal.”