Osinbajo given 74 hours to stop ‘undue harassment’ of Adoke

The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has given Acting President Yemi Osinbajo a 74-hour ultimatum to stop the “undue harassment” of Mohammed Adoke, former attorney-general of the federation (AGF).

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has levelled a series of allegations against Adoke who denied all of them.

The anti-graft agency even attempted to extradite Adoke, who is currently abroad, in connection with his role in the Malabu oil deal.

But in a statement on Wednesday, Emmanuel Onwubiko, national coordinator of HURIWA, argued that the ex-minister is being witch-hunted.

“The former minister of justice who has been in Europe for his post master’s degree course has cried out on several occasions that the lives of his immediate family members are threatened by members of the cabal within the presidency because of the ongoing issues relating to the lawful action he took in his capacity as the nation’s chief law officer in the business transaction over oil well involving such parties as Malabu and Shell,” he said in a statement.

“We will for historical purposes present the summary of the matter of Malabu and to show you that in the entire scenario, the immediate past AGF is being wrongfully targeted may be because of his political persuasion or because he was a key kitchen member of the last government headed by the now opposition party- people’s democratic party.

“We note that Adoke himself has written to explain his official role in all of these but the harassment has persisted.

“We hereby give the Acting President Professor Yemi Osinbanjo 74 hours to officially and publicly direct the EFCC to stop the harassment of Adoke or failure which we will approach the UN Human Rights Council with a petition to declare ex-justice minister of Nigeria as an endangered species in Nigeria.

“Why isolate and select Adoke for persistent harassment when the FG hasn’t been able to establish any evidence of wrong doing or show any bribery transaction linking the immediate past AGF?

“The action of invasions of homes of Adoke in Abuja, Kano and Kogi State is illegal and unconstitutional and violates all known laws of civility and human rights.”

Onwubiko also listed the attempts by different administrations to settle the dispute in the controversial deal, making it clear that the Malabu issue predates the administration where Adoke served.

“It is important from the exchange of letters between the presidency, ministry of petroleum resources, SNUD and Malabu, that several meetings were held between President Olusegun Obasanjo, GCFR and SNUD to resolve the dispute,” he said.

“The former president had proposed a middle courses solution to the dispute; whereby the interests of SNUD, Malabu and NNPC would be accommodated on OPL 245, i.e SNUD would be contractor-operator, while NNPC and Malabu would be concessionaire equity right and concessionaire equity interests respectively.

“While it would appear that SNUD was comfortable with the above arrangement. Malabu contended that the solution failed to take cognizance of its membership rights over OPL M245. Malabu asserted that the proposed solution amounted to a unilateral imposition of the back in regime, which did not apply in the circumstance. In general, was of the view that SNUXD was not a position to insist that it must be the contractor on OPL 245 and canvassed the full implementation of the terms of settlement proposals is enclosed as Annexure C.

“We say so because this Malabu matter predates the immediate past government but commenced around 2006 with the then Federal government under chief Olusegun Obasanjo up until it was resolved out of court during the last administration. In all of these the AGF is one of the over 5 key government officials including president Obasanjo, Yadua/Jonathan, Petroleum Minister and then Finance Minister Olusegun Aganga who then headed the Finance Ministry. His predecessor in office under Obasanjo played also his lawful role.”

(THE CABLE)