In the new world of beleaguered former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke, the glamour and freedom that hallmarked her reign under the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan seem like a generation ago. Those privileges have now been replaced by acute paranoia and living incognito. Considered as one of Nigeria’s foremost fugitives, Diezani hasn’t been to Nigeria since 2015.
After many months of shying away from the spotlight which was her orbit for many years, the former minister, who faces charges of corruption was allegedly sighted recently by a Twitter user (@osquare78) in London, “casually strolling, hooded and furtive”, tweeted: “Guess who I just saw in NW, London? Diezani Alison-Madueke. When she noticed I wanted to snap her, she quickly moved very fast away from me. I was gonna come down to ask her abt our yams, but the traffic was moving.”
The so-called sighting opened a floodgate of comments on the social media platform, many wondering if she was no longer cancer-stricken and being held by the UK security agency. Diezani may be the most publicly derided woman in modern-day Nigeria, but you can’t deny that she’s a woman of steel. Despite countless against allegations against her by the EFCC and its huff and puff to extradite her, nothing has happened.
In spite of the UK NCA’s momentary holding in its custody as a “person of interest”, Diezani has continued to live as a free woman in the UK. She had even written to the EFCC to respond to accusations against her. The anti-graft agency felt she was trying to evade justice in the UK. However, last year, the EFCC made a media glitz announcing to the world that it had begun a move to extradite the former petroleum minister. EFCC, how far?
Some have argued that the supposed Diezani walking the street of London might be a look-alike. Even if the individual was Diezani and she was cancer-stricken, does that mean people who have suffered some form of cancer don’t recover and live a happy, healthy and hitch-free life? Some Diezani-obsessed Nigerians need to take a break from their own insane sanity.
Instead of being obsessed with the former minister, Nigerians should please urge the EFCC to expedite action on its extradition efforts. Is the UK government blocking its request?
You may call Diezani names but she made a lot of men and turned their starless nights to bright days. Beyond her two major cronies, Aluko and Omokore, there are so many young briefcase-businessmen who made a kill under her and if permitted then, would have died for her. Alas, life has happened…you only know your true allies when the chips are down.