Following the ensuing drama after the arrest of Mohammed Bello Adoke, a former Attorney-General of Nigeria, in the United Arab Emirates by Interpol, top officials in the office of the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, are blocking his extradition to the country, SaharaReporters has learnt.
Adoke was arrested on November 11, 2019 in Dubai.
The Interpol had held him following the issuance of a warrant to arrest him by a court.
However, it was reported that he was still being held by the Interpol as they were yet to be served the latest order by Justice D. Z. Zenchi dismissing the arrest order.
Adoke had been on self-exile in the last five years in order to evade investigation, interrogation and prosecution by Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
SaharaReporters had gathered that contrary to reports that Adoke might have travelled from Rwanda or China, the former AGF had been using Ghana as his hideout and travelled to Dubai from there.
Also, Adoke had travelled to Dubai to oversee businesses and contacts when he was arrested by the Interpol, contrary to reports that he went to Dubai for a medical check-up.
Sources confirmed to SaharaReporters that Adoke’s lawyers in Nigeria have been meeting with top officials in the AGF’s office to transmit the latest court order to the Interpol to ensure Adoke was released.
One source said, “Since the arrest, Adoke and his lawyers have embarked on behind-the-door interaction with the Ministry of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation to have Adoke released using the recent vacation order of the FCT high court, which earlier granted the warrant of arrest on Adoke to EFCC.”
Insider sources at the EFCC also informed our correspondent that there was an “ongoing spirited effort by the commission to have charges served on Adoke as ordered by the court and subsequently have him extradited to Nigeria to face charges”.
Contacts in the Ministry of Justice still loyal to Adoke are frustrating the attempt at serving the charges.
It was noted that the ambivalent attitude of the AGF was not giving expected direction and leadership to have proper coordination of the processes.
“The Ministry of justice contacts of Adoke, working from the office of the Director of Public Prosecution, prefers to urgently have Adoke released from arrest by transmitting the order of the court vacating the warrant of arrest and not the charges preferred against Adoke and order of the court to have him served through substituted service,” the source added.
The EFCC and Dubai authorities prefer to have Adoke extradited to Nigeria considering the MLAC agreement on criminal matters between the two countries, including corruption related matters as one involving Adoke.
The Nigerian Government has reportedly reached an agreement with the United Arab Emirates to enable the extradition of corrupt officials hiding stolen funds in Dubai.