Adoke: EFCC Initiated $6m Non-Prosecution Agreement with Suspect

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Gboyega Akinsanmi

Former Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Mohammed Adoke, wednesday disclosed that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) initiated $6 million non-prosecution agreement between the federal government and Tidex Nigeria Limited in 2011.

Adoke, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), also revealed that the anti-graft agency adopted the same method of settlements for Shell Nigeria, Saipem, KBR, Inc. and JGC Corporation among others in 2011.

He made the disclosure in a statement he issued in response to a report by a national daily on Tuesday, noting that the anti-graft agency initiated the $6 million non-prosecution agreement under the chairmanship of Mrs. Farida Waziri.

The report had on Tuesday said the incumbent AGF, Mr. Abubakar Malami, SAN had directed the EFCC to investigate the 2011 non-prosecution agreement executed between the federal government and Tidex Nigeria Limited.

But Adoke, in a statement he personally signed yesterday, noted that the office of the AGF did not initiate these settlements contrary to a report published in a national daily on Tuesday.

He explained that it was the EFCC, under the chairmanship of Waziri that initiated these settlements and nominated Mr. Godwin Obla as the lawyer “to represent their interest in the negotiations that were conducted under auspices of the Office of the AGF.”

He added that it was when the negotiations were concluded “to the satisfaction of all the parties that I signed on behalf of the Federal Government of Nigeria and the then Secretary to the EFCC, Mr. Emmanuel Akomoye, signed on behalf of the EFCC.”

Adoke noted that the copies of the agreements “are in the Office of the AGF and I believe with the EFCC as well,” noting that the process of the non-prosecution settlement did not start from the office of the AGF.

He therefore said a dispassionate investigation into the Tidex Nigeria Limited Non-Prosecution Agreement would reveal that the settlement was at the behest of the EFCC, the Secretary to the EFCC, Mr. Emmanuel Akomaye and EFCC nominated an attorney, Mr. Godwin Obla.

He added that a dispassionate investigation “will also reveal that the penal fines imposed on Tidex Nigeria Limited were duly paid into a federal government designated account with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and that I did not in anyway derive any benefit whatsoever from the transaction.”

Likewise, the former attorney-general disclosed that EFCC adopted the same procedure in respect of all the settlements that were initiated by the EFCC in 2011, mainly those including Shell Nigeria, Saipem, KBR, Inc., and JGC Corporation e.t.c. that infracted the laws of the country.

He thus said: “I reiterate my previous assurances to all concerned Nigerians that while in office, I conducted myself with the utmost decorum and ensured the observance of due process, transparency and accountability in all matters that were brought to my attention.

“This petition is clearly underpinned by the refusal of the office of the AGF to be used during my tenure by the Nigerian shareholders to settle personal disputes with their foreign partners.”