Abubakar Malami, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, has said the United Arab Emirates are yet to officially inform Nigeria about the arrest of his predecessor, Mohammed Bello Adoke.
Malami made this known in a statement issued by Umar Jibrilu Gwandu, his Special Assistant on Media and Public Relations, on Monday in reaction to media reports indicating Adoke’s arrest.
Reports had emerged on Sunday that Adoke was arrested n Dubai, the United Arab Emirates, by the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol). He was said to have been arrested on November 11 upon arrival in the country for a scheduled medical check-up.
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It was learnt that the former AGF may have been arrested based on a warrant of arrest issued by a Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court in Abuja in April 2019. However, following an appeal by Adoke’s legal team, the warrant was declared “null and void and of no effect whatsoever” by the same court in October 2019.
But while the first order was sent to Interpol by the Nigerian Police Force, the vacating order was not transmitted, thereby creating confusion for the multinational force.
However, Malami said he would not comment on the matter until he receives an official communication from the UAE.
The statement read: “My office as the Attorney General Federation and Minister of Justice of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is not in receipt of any formal communication regarding the alleged arrest in line with international conventions, processes and procedures relating to such matter.
“Until such formal communication is received the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice would not comment speculatively in one way or the other over the matter.”
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had charged Adoke and others in 2017 over the controversial OPL 245 deal executed by the federal government in 2011.
The ex-AGF has, however, been on self-exile after he left office in 2015.
But speaking after releasing his new book entitled: “Burden Of Service: Reminiscences of Nigeria’s former Attorney-General”, Adoke said he was prepared to return to the country after attending to his health.