Diezani probe: Court stops Reps
The investigation of petroleum minister Mrs. Diezani AlisonMadueke over alleged spending of N10 billion on private jet by the House of Representatives suffered a setback yesterday after the minister obtained a court order stopping the process.
The minister allegedly spent N10 billion on hiring and maintenance of an aircraft for private purposes. The court order has now pulled the plug on the investigations, chairman of the House of Representatives committee Rep Solomon AdeolaOlamilekan said yesterday.
According to a copy of the restraining order seen by Daily Trust, Justice Ahmed Mohammed of the Federal High Court gave an ex parte order restraining the lawmakers from requesting the minister to produce any papers, notes or documents before any of its committees “pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice.”
The order was given based on an application by the minister’s counsel Etigwe Uwa.
The committee had scheduled yesterday for the commencement of the public hearing on the allegation where the minister and other stakeholders were billed to appear.
House spokesperson Rep Zakari Mohammed alongside the committee’s chairman, Rep AdeolaOlamilekan, in a press briefing said a court order that was served to the office of the speaker yesterday stopped the commencement of the investigation.
Rep Zakari said “we have been served with a court order, notifying us that they have gone to court.
“The import of this is that for us as legislators, it is our responsibility to expose corruption, but of course this is another demonstration of the frustrations we face from government.”
He said as a law abiding arm of government, “we would tarry a while and take a legal advice about this issue.”
Rep Adeola-Olamilekan said his committee had established the preliminary process for the investigation and obtained critical documents from London and the hanger company in Nigeria about the flights’ details.
The only entities and individual left to furnish the committee with required details include the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), minister of petroleum, Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) and the Nigerian civil Aviation authority (NCAA).