Diezani moved 115m dollar into Fidelity Bank, paid N900m to Belgore, Suleiman

Diezani moved 115m dollar into Fidelity Bank, paid N900m to Belgore, Suleiman
March 14 13:53 2017

A prosecution witness, Timothy Olaobaju, has narrated how former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke, stashed the sum of $115,010,000 in Fidelity bank in alleged questionable circumstances.

Olaobaju also told a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos how 450 million naira each from the money was paid to a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Dele Belgore, and a former Minister of National Planning, Prof. Abubakar Sulaiman, on Diezani’s instructions.

Olaobaju, a staff of the bank, made this revelation while giving evidence before Justice Rilwan Aikawa.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, is currently prosecuting Belgore and Sulaiman on a five count charge bordering on money laundering to the tune of N450m.

Also charged along with the accused persons is the former Petroleum Minister who is said to “still be at large.”

The witness said Belgore and Sulaiman signed separate Receipts of Payment for the same N450m on March 26, 2015.

The court admitted both Receipts of Payment in evidence and marked them as Exhibits 1 and 1A.

Asked by the prosecutor whether any cheque was issued in favour of Belgore and Sulaiman in respect of the fund, the witness answered in the negative.

Asked whether the N450m was credited into any account, the witness said, “To my knowledge, the N450m was not credited into any account.”

For the cross-examination of the witness, Belgore’s lawyer, Chief Ebun Shofunde (SAN), asked for an adjournment, as he said most of what the witness said on Monday were not in the proof of evidence front-loaded and served on the defence counsel.

Sulaiman’s lawyer, Olatunji Ayanlaja (SAN), aligned himself with Shofunde.

The prosecutor said he would grudgingly concede to an adjournment till Tuesday in view of his respect for the defence counsel.

Justice Aikawa, consequently, adjourned the matter till Tuesday for further proceedings.

Justice Aikawa had earlier granted the two accused persons bail on self-recognisance.